As the saying goes, hindsight is 20/20, so I won’t second guess what happened leading up to the death of our US Ambassador and 3 other Americans in a Sept 11th attack on our embassy in Benghazi, Libya.
I won’t second guess, first guess,or third guess because nobody has to guess at the events leading up to this attack and murder. All of those events were readily available to anyone reading the news or their daily security briefings. All it would have taken to avoid this tragedy was for someone in a position of power to show a little foresight and leadership.
Yes, someone in the White House could have and should have shown leadership and stopped this dangerous situation from turning tragic. What kind of leader wouldn’t recognize the danger, or if they did recognize the danger, what kind of leader doesn’t act on that danger? What kind of leader wouldn’t recognize a 9/11 anniversary as a potentially dangerous situation for Americans living in Muslim nations and especially Muslim nations that recently went through a violent revolution.
My answer is the kind of leader we have in President Obama, who refers to this tragic event, with diminished concern, as a “bump in the road.” President Obama is the kind of leader who apparently either doesn’t recognize the true danger, doesn’t want to recognize the true danger, or is simply incapable of leading Americans safely through these dangers.
As you read through this tidbit list of events leading up to the 9/11/12 attack on our Benghazi Embassy, ask yourself at what point would you increase US security beyond the two men assigned to protect two embassy personnel? When would you decide that this is a dangerous situation warranting additional security?
February 2011 – beginning of Libyan revolution against Qaddafi regime.
On February 16, 2011 Libyan protesters clashed with police in an anti-government demonstration inspired by the uprisings that brought down the rulers of Libya’s neighbors, Egypt and Tunisia. Opposition activists, organizing through social media, rallied against the country’s long-time leader, Moammar Gadhafi, in the country’s second-biggest city, Benghazi.
Mid-March 2011 – UN resolution supporting Libyan Rebels
Shortly before midnight, the streets of Libya’s de facto rebel capital, Benghazi, were quiet, nearly deserted.
A few minutes after midnight, tracer bullets and celebratory machine-gun fire were racing into the air from every direction and residents piled into their cars for a massive street party.
In between, the United Nations Security Council voted by 10-0 to not only impose a no-fly zone over eastern Libya but to allow for “all necessary measures” short of an occupation to protect the country’s civilians from Col. Muammar Qaddafi, the dictator who’s ruled Libya for nearly 42 years.
Late March 2011 – President Obama offers special support for Libyan Rebels
(Reuters) – President Barack Obama has signed a secret order authorizing covert U.S. government support for rebel forces seeking to oust Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, government officials told Reuters on Wednesday.
October 2011 – End of Qaddafi regime
Five days after he was sodomized, beaten, and shot in the head, former Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi was finally laid to rest at a “secret location” in the Libyan desert, according to the NTC, the transitional government in Libya. And not a moment too soon. Qaddafi’s body has been on display in a meat cooler in Misrata since Thursday
November 2011 – Transitional Government established in Libya.
TRIPOLI, Libya – Libya’s transitional leaders swore on a Quran to uphold the ideals of the revolution that toppled Muammar Qaddafi as they took their oaths of office Thursday, another key step in the country’s hoped-for march toward democracy.
January 2012 – President Obama appoints Christopher Stevens as US Ambassador to Libya
President Barack Obama on Monday night announced his intent to nominate career Senior Foreign Service member John Christopher Stevens as US ambassador to Libya.
March 2012 – Attitude check
(CBS News) Armed vandals attacked and smashed the headstones of Allied and Italian service members laid to rest in a World War II cemetery in Benghazi and then posted video of their desecration online.
May 2012 – Attack on International Red Cross in Benghazi
BENGHAZI (Reuters) – A rocket-propelled grenade hit the offices of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Libya’s eastern city of Benghazi overnight, leaving a small hole in the side of the building but causing no casualties, an ICRC spokeswoman said on Tuesday.
Benghazi has suffered a series of small attacks since the beginning of the year that have raised concerns over the ruling National Transitional Council’s (NTC) ability to impose its authority and ensure security after last year’s rebellion ended Muammar Gaddafi’s 40-year rule.
June 2012 – US embassy in Benghazi, Libya. US officials ask Libyan government for increased security.
A bomb went off outside the US embassy offices in the eastern Libyan city of Benghazi Tuesday night, causing minor damage to its main gate.
A US embassy official in Tripoli told BBC that no one was injured in the attack, by unknown assailants.
The US official deplored the attack and asked the Libyan government to increase security around US facilities.
Washington had confirmed a few hours before the attack that a U.S.-operated drone had killed Abu Yahya al-Libi, a Libyan-born cleric and senior al Qaeda operative, in Pakistan.
The U.S. State Department said it had asked Libyan authorities to increase security around U.S. facilities.
“We deplore the attack on our diplomatic mission in Benghazi,” State Department spokesman Mark Toner told a news briefing.
Toner said a local guard reported that an attack was underway against one of the Benghazi compound’s perimeter walls and warned diplomatic staff to take cover.
The bombing will revive concerns about the lack of security in Libya, where last year Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown in an uprising supported by NATO air power.
July 2012 – Libyan elections
Despite violence that left at least several dead, numerous gun battles, allegations of voter fraud, dozens of polling places unable to operate, mass protests, militias running wild, and whole regions still in chaos, Western governments and the United Nations — largely responsible for the recent “regime change” that killed dictator Moammar Gadhafi and thousands of innocent civilians — celebrated political elections in Libya on Saturday, July 7 as a success. Meanwhile, multiple armed factions are still threatening to unleash full-blown civil war amid ongoing battles all across the chaos-stricken nation.
August 27th – State Dept. issues Travel Warning citing potential for political assassinations among the reasons.
Travel Warning U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Bureau of Consular Affairs
August 27, 2012
The Department of State warns U.S. citizens against all but essential travel to Libya. The incidence of violent crime, especially carjacking and robbery, has become a serious problem. In addition, political violence in the form of assassinations and vehicle bombs has increased in both Benghazi and Tripoli.
September 4th – Libyan news notes increased security fears over increase in Islamist groups.
Small-scale crimes, such as carjacking, robberies, and petty theft, and more serious acts of violence such as car bombings and political assassinations, are posing an increasing challenge to the Libyan authorities. There are also increased security fears over apparent increase in Islamists groups and Qadhafi regime loyalists has increased security concerns across Libya, particularly in Tripoli and Benghazi.
September 5th – President Obama receives final daily briefing before 9/11 anniversary
According to the White House schedule President Obama receives last daily briefing Wednesday September 5th with no more daily briefings in the five more days leading up to 9/11 anniversary.
September 10th Early – Inadequate security at US Embassy
Benghazi, awash in guns, has recently witnessed a string of assassinations as well as attacks on international missions, including a bomb said to be planted by another Islamist group that exploded near the United States mission there as recently as June. But a Libyan politician who had breakfast with Mr. Stevens at the mission the morning before he was killed described security, mainly four video cameras and as few as four Libyan guards, as sorely inadequate for an American ambassador in such a tumultuous environment.
September 10th Late – Video posted calling for attacks on Americans
In a video posted late Monday on militant websites, al-Qaida chief Ayman al-Zawahri described his late lieutenant Abu Yahya al-Libi as a “lion of jihad and knowledge.”
The killing of al-Libi, who was Libyan by birth, was the biggest setback to al-Qaida since the death of Osama bin Laden.
Al-Zawahri also urged Libyans — al-Libi was born in the north African country — to attack Americans to avenge the late militant’s death, saying his “blood is calling, urging and inciting you to fight and kill the Crusaders.”
September 11th – US Embassy in Benghazi still operating in “an interim facility” with a reduced level of security compared to formal embassies in permanent facilities.
A senior administration official Wednesday called the Benghazi consulate “an interim facility,” which the State Department began using “before the fall of Qadhafi.” It was staffed Tuesday by Libyan and State Department security officers. The consulate came under fire from heavy machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades at about 10 p.m. local time on Tuesday. By the time the attack ended several hours later, four Americans were dead and three others had been injured.
The Benghazi consulate had “lock-and-key” security, not the same level of defenses as a formal embassy, an intelligence source told POLITICO. That means it had no bulletproof glass, reinforced doors or other features common to embassies. The intelligence source contrasted it with the American embassy in Cairo, Egypt – “a permanent facility, which is a lot easier to defend.” The Cairo embassy also was attacked Tuesday.
September 11th – US Embassy in Benghazi attacked killing four Americans
The US ambassador to Libya and three other American staffers died on Tuesday night in an attack on the US consulate in the eastern city of Benghazi, US officials have said.
An armed mob attacked and set fire to the consulate building during a protest against an amateur film deemed offensive to Islam’s prophet, Muhammad, after similar protests in Egypt’s capital.
The two incidents came on the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 al-Qaeda attacks in the US.
The US government confirmed that Ambassador Chris Stevens and information technology officer Sean Smith, in addition to two unnamed personnel, died in the attack. Libyan security source told Al Jazeera that Stevens died from smoke inhalation.
September 12th – News of the rape and murder of Ambassador Stevens surfaces
Sources said that “the U.S. ambassador to Libya was raped sexually before killing by gunmen who stormed the embassy building in Benghazi last night to protest against the film is offensive to the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh),” The sources said that “Ambassador was killed and representation of his body in a manner similar to what happened with Gaddafi ahead kill him. ” has reported: kill the U.S. ambassador in Libya Christopher Stevens and three Americans in an attack on Tuesday evening 09/11/2012 the U.S. consulate in Benghazi
Google Translation of www.tayyar.org
September 13th – President Obama sends in the Marines…to Tripoli…because there are no Americans alive in Benghazi.
President Obama condemned the killings, promised to bring the assailants to justice and ordered tighter security at all American diplomatic installations. The administration also sent 50 Marines to the Libyan capital, Tripoli, to help with security at the American Embassy there, ordered all nonemergency personnel to leave Libya and warned Americans not to travel there.
Obama administration officials and regional officials scrambled to sort out conflicting reports about the attack and the motivation of the attackers. A senior Obama administration officials told reporters during a conference call that “it was clearly a complex attack,” but offered no details.
September 15th – US Embassy attack is attributed to al Qaeda
Benghazi, Libya – The attack on the US consulate in Benghazi that killed four Americans and ten Libyans was the work of “experienced masterminds” that had been planned well in advance, the Libyan president says.
“I think this was al-Qaeda,” President Mohamed al-Magarief told Al Jazeera on Friday, in his first interview with foreign media since the violence three days earlier.
“If you take into account the weapons used like RPGs and other heavy weapons, it proves that it was pre-planned,” he said. “It’s a dirty act of revenge that has nothing to do with religion.”
His comments to Al Jazeera marked the first time his government has openly attributed acts of violence to religious extremists.
So at what point did you decide to increase US security? Was it when we first located US Citizens in the Embassy? Was it after the spring bombing at the embassy? Was it in the weeks leading up to the 9/11 anniversary? Was it Sept 10th after the release of a video calling for death to Americans? Or did you wait to send in the Marines, like President Obama, until after our ambassador was raped and then killed with the the other three Americans?
When I heard about the attacks on our embassy in Libya I was dumfounded to hear that all four Americans at the embassy had died. I was not dumfounded that they had died in the attack, I was dumfounded that the casualty list was just four Americans dead, rather than something like 20 Marines wounded and 4 Americans dead. I wondered, especially on 9/11, why there was no US security for the four Americans?
It was heartbreaking to hear that they were dead, it was angering to hear the way they were killed and I was ashamed that our leaders didn’t see fit to protect them from such a clear an present danger. How could President Obama apologize to the world for the amateur movie that didn’t cause this violence, yet not apologize to Ambassador Steven’s family for failing to protect a person he appointed to his dangerous position, I don’t think President Obama is at fault causing the violence, but he is at fault for not providing the leadership necessary to protect these Americans. One more reason President Obama is not fit for the office he holds.