Thursday, December 27, 2012

Back to Benghazi

I had delayed writing more about the Benghazi scandal as the whole topic makes me sick to my stomach, head, heart, toes, and soul. As you all know, State's Accountability Review Board (ARB) report came out a few days ago.

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

The ARB was headed by former Ambassador Pickering, an honorable but very much an inside the beltway man. The report is predictable; it found "performance inadequacies," and was appropriately critical of certain mid-level bureaucratic decisions when it came to security and interpretation of the intelligence.

Yeah, yeah, yawn.

Some key words, however, were missing from the report: words such as "delusional foreign policy," Barack Obama, Leon Panetta, and, oh what's that other name? You know the one "in charge" of State? The invisible SecState. Dang. I can never recall her name. You know the Whitewater fraudster . . . it'll come to me, I am sure.

I am glad also to report that I won my bet with a former colleague on the Benghazi fiasco. I bet him that nobody would be forced to resign: that would be the price of the truce between Foggy Bottom and Chicago. "You don't fire us Foggy Bottom sorts, and we don't go public with how cretinous a foreign policy you Chicagoans have instituted. Deal? Deal."

The initial reports indicated I might have lost the bet, as supposedly four State officials either were forced to resign or dismissed . . . yeah, right. My colleague called to collect on his bet; I delayed paying as I was skeptical of the initial reports. Then  SUDDENLY the truth came out. Nobody had been axed! It was all a three card monte game with no money card on the table.

I will go out further on the limb. Once even the little dust created by the scandal has dissipated, the four bureaucrats asked to take the mini-spear for Chicago will--mark my words--get monetary awards. They will be written up for showing courage and fortitude under difficult circumstances. The senior people will evade all responsibility; ol' whats-her-name will slip out of the building and leave her desk to John "Xmas in Cambodia" Kerry, the dead will be forgotten, the Islamist Morlocks will lick their fingers and get ready for another helping of Eloi.

Move along, there's nothing to see here.

Which way to the US Embassy?


  1. I don't think this is an example of the State Department failing. I think it is larger than that. I believe Washington has become a hive mind that considers itself above and apart from all the laws and regulations they impose on the rest of us. It's not new: Congresspersons' wives since at least the 60s, when I joined the FS, were notorious for exclaiming loudly "do you know who I am?" when they were pulled over driving drunk or wanted to get to the front of an airline waiting line. But it's gotten worse, in large part because the journalists who used to expose this kind of activity have joined the elected elite and are now immune to laws that affect the rest of us. John Kerry harboring his yacht in a neighboring state to avoid Massachusetts state tax is part of the mentality (you've gotta tell us, Dip, what you REALLY think of Kerry as S/S) and so is David Gregory using a 30-round magazine as a prop on Meet the Press (illegal in D.C.). Hillary refusing to testify regarding Benghazi is no different from Obama claiming executive privilege rather than allowing Holder to testify regarding Fast & Furious. They're all above the law, even the head of Diplomatic Security, who is still an employee of State and who will very likely get a bonus. Which reminds me -- remember the bonuses (multi-millions in some cases) paid out to the CEO of failed Freddie and Fannie? More of the same mentality. I really don't know now this can be stopped as it feeds on itself. Gore living in a gigantic house with an enormous carbon footprint and lecturing the rest of us on the need to decrease ours. All the same. And all disgusting.

    1. Excellent points, all of them.

    2. You've got to admit that "I was for it before I was against it" Kerry fits the bill perfectly to continue the misguided, muddled policies of this administration. One can only imagine how many loose threads of the tangled skein of Mid-East policy he'll pull getting us tied up into an epic Gordian Knot that sadly there will be no easy cuts to free us from.


  2. I'd bet money that you are absolutely right. I'm actually amazed that the real terms of the deal surfaced at all, but based on that information alone, you could no doubt collect on your new, improved bet if a way could be found to confirm.

  3. Can Hillary say, 'don't blame me' it was the WH and the CIA running the show in Benghazi? Why are we piling on her? Where was Obama for 7 hours and what did he do (or didn't do)?

    "The ARB tries to ignore “the Annex,” which was a facility apparently under the control of the CIA, but lets slip some intriguing details that raise further questions. Check out the following timeline:

    Plans for the Ambassador’s trip provided for minimal close protection security support and were not shared thoroughly with the Embassy’s country team, who were not fully aware of planned movements off compound.

    Stevens decision to go to Benghazi had nothing to do with his traditional State Department role. That’s why it was not fully coordinated with the country team. He was engaged in supporting a White House led intelligence activity to provide support to Syrian rebels with the help of Turkey. That’s why Sean Smith was sent out a week in advance. This was not a spontaneous, sudden visit. It was planned. "

    You may read the rest here:

  4. I increasingly find myself incredulous with our leadership. I keep hearing about the cleverness, brilliance and competency of these people. But the flu? Hillary won’t submit to constitutionally mandated oversight because of a doctor’s excuse? I would have been embarrassed to try that gambit in junior high. The sad fact is that she is only in prominence because she rode the coattails of Bill -he who parsed what the meaning of the word 'is' is. God only knows what a soul-destroying journey that must have been, so yeah, she deserves pity. But head of State, hell no. Hey, I try to get some perspective by reading history and, it is to be sure, replete with fiascos and jokers. America always managed to muddle thru. Maybe this time is no different. Nonetheless I keep getting the feeling that the wheel has turned, we are in a depression, and I am my great grandfather ranting with visceral hatred about Roosevelt. Roosevelt turned out OK , so maybe Obama and his crew will measure up too… Sorry for the rant.. drunk again.

    1. SidVic
      You assume Hillary had a soul to lose at that point.

  5. SidVic: Hillary, flu? Concussion? Try Betty Ford drying out treatment.

    1. Now that you mention it, does fit the facts. Not to worry John "do-you-know-who-I-am?" Kerry will straighten it all out.

  6. We are allowing obfuscation of the basic issues, and they allow known questions to be answered by Name(s)
    1) who proposed use of the consulate that had inadequate security without the security being installed first? a name
    2) who signed off on the use of the consulate that did not have adequate security? a name
    3) who knew of the attack and had assets to respond but did not in violation of the UCMJ and Ambassador equaling a 4star and such? all of the names (excuses or maybe even legit reasons like secret orders can come after we have the names)(this *might* come to dozens of officers who need to be cashiered)
    4) who had access to Rice's talking points between the time it can be proved it did not mention any movie but did mention Al Qaeda and what she claims to have received. all the names, might have to start at firing them all to get any to talk but that is OK, likely everybody in they room knows who really changed it but as long as there are no repercussions the Code of Silence remains intact.
    5) who decided that the Turk's official did not need to be questioned? name(s)

    Since the problems posited by these are public, the names should be too. maybe some of the backstory is too sensitive (Turkish issues and the specific secret orders for example) but the failures are obvious and public, and the names of the people who failed are secret.
    There is no chance of effective AAR without pressure on those names, and no chance of pressure as long as the names remain secret.

    1. The consulate didn't have adequate security because it wasn't a consulate.
      State Department handed out the rubber swords because they make it easier to get underlings to fall on them.
      Hillary doesn't have a rubber sword - too high a profile so the ruse would never work.
      State took a too active role in the CIA gun running operation moving Libya weapons to Syria via Turkey.
      CIA participants in the fiasco have scurried for the shadows - hence those rescued from the so called 'consulate' are nowhere to be found.
      That leaves State holding the bag - I mean attempting to maintain the charade.
      Hillary is trying to wait and stall long enough to be replaced so any questioning can be sidetracked without being burdened by responsibilities and obligations of the Sec. of State office.
      Forget about Obama. Think of him as the ring leader or circus clown - push comes to shove and he will orchestrate a circular firing squad of all those involved. And, from safety of cover (provided by the willing and complicit media) shout out: Ready. Aim. Fire.
      Anyone expecting the Republicans to uncover the truth? Reid will never let an investigation go forward in the Senate. Expecting the House Republican leadership to lead the charge? Think about Fast & Furious for a while and get back to me on that one.

  7. Hey, but the DOS is improving, did you notice? Our Embassy got run out of the Central African Republic (with very little MSM notice), and -- as far as we know -- none of our guys got killed!

    Another foreign policy success for Obama and Clinton!


  8. I have thouroughly enjoyed your blog entries (entreaties?)regarding Benghazi et al. As I was shopping at my local China product dump (Walmart) I spied this little morsel: Hillary has brain cancer!?! (From the Star) Fact of feint? Consider the "Check-out line" media broke the Edwards lovechild news before everyone. I am just saying...

  9. Where's Hillary? In Argentina. Or some other country where she can get Tom Cruise-level lack of media attention to her lap band surgery & a good old fashioned face lift. She'll attribute her new look to her terrible bout with the flu, resulting in dramatic weight loss.

    Just kidding of course. I'm sure she's recuperating at home (where is that, by the way?) with charming, dutiful Bill by her side.

    Back to Benghazi. It really struck me how perfect Hillary looked - the very day after the attack, was it not? - with Dear Leader at the White House. Perfectly coiffed, perfectly made up, in a perfectly tailored navy pantsuit, with perfect pearls. No plastic hair clips or scrunchies. Huh. How bout that.

  10. Diplomad,

    According to this article, the family of Glen Doherty has received no compensation from the US Gov't since he was a contractor.

    I understand the legal fiction that brings these men to their duties. What did State and other agencies, especially the ones with no names, do to protect the families of these contractors in the event of death?

    Most consumer life insurance specifically denies payment in the event of an Act of War.

    What was the situation back in the 80's, and what can you discuss about the current situation?