On May 20, 2010, Mexican President Felipe Calderon was invited by the Administration and Democrats to address a joint session of Congress. In his speech he ripped Arizona’s new law, commonly known as SB1070, which was written to potentially add muscle to the Federal law in clamping down on illegal immigrants. Aside from the audacity of a foreign head of state coming into this country and criticizing our laws, most grievous was the standing and cheering of House and Senate Democrats and White House officials, including Attorney General Eric Holder and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano – two officials who earlier confessed to not even reading the law. The law which had not yet been implemented, Calderon claimed, might cause racial profiling.
On August 13, 2012, Jon Hammar, the 27-year-old former Marine from Palmetto Bay, Florida, was arrested by Mexican officials as he crossed between Brownsville, Texas and Matamoros, Mexico on bogus charges after declaring an antique shotgun, a family heirloom, which U.S. Customs had cleared and provided the proper documentation for Mexican customs. He was immediately imprisoned in the notoriously dangerous CEDES prison for almost five months, run by a drug cartel and chained to a bed, before his release just before Christmas.
I suspect all American citizens would hope that our State Department would intercede when they are arrested and imprisoned under questionable charges. If that failed to produce results, one would further hope that our President would pick up the telephone and call Mexican President Calderon or after December 1 to newly elected Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, who began his six-year term on that date. Such calls with Mexican officials seem not only to have never taken place but no public statements were forthcoming from the White House or State Department. One might expect at least a statement saying how pleased that Hammar had finally been released and critical of the injustice of his Mexican imprisonment.
I now see that anything that interferes with the President’s narrative is at least never the recipient of any comment and at worse never criticized. Thus, a foreign head of state can come into our own Congress and criticize a law that might racially profile a person while millions have crossed the border illegally and applaud such criticism because he is reliant on the Hispanic vote for his re-election. But when a U.S. citizen enters Mexico legally and is imprisoned on trumped-up charges, the Administration remains mute, never finding fault with the nation that is the major contributor of the illegal population in this country.
The day after the November elections I wrote about the disappointment and disheartenment at the results of the presidential election. One of the glowing, biggest disappointments I had then was the silence by the Administration and the spin in which surrogates had used to provide cover for the attacks in Benghazi and the murder of four Americans. I had expected that Congress would vigorously pursue attempts to get the entire real story surrounding Benghazi and the Administration’s actions or lack of actions but also expected the Administration would employ some of the same tactics seen during the Watergate fiasco. That strategy would be to stall testimony that might render it a presidential cover up until another crisis would present itself or be created to capture the headlines. I surmised that the new crisis would take center stage, either real, like the national debt and sequestration, or manufactured for some unexpected and unanticipated event.
How naive was I! Obama in his re-election victory speech talked about reaching across the aisle to solve problems and of the need for finding common ground. But immediately he began another campaign to increase “fair share” taxes on the rich, totally intransigent to any attempts to find common ground with absolutely no recommendations for any cuts to a bloated Federal government. Obama’s blame game of Republican intransigence is alive and well, aided and abetted by a liberal press that has dropped their coverage of Benghazi in favor of covering their support of his rhetoric. I suspect this was always the game plan and the prime reason that Obama never devoted any time to working on a solution that he knew should have been pursued prior to the November election. But why work today on something that can be called a crisis tomorrow. It was the crisis on which he could launch his next campaign for more taxation.
It was so obvious, like the nose on one’s face, that the fiscal cliff would be the new crisis, already loaming on the horizon. Additionally, unexpected and unanticipated, the Gaza rocket attacks on Israel, the actions of the new Egyptian dictator, the Syrian rebellion, and the Michigan legislature and governor’s approval of the right-to-work state law further robbed the spotlight of Benghazi from liberal press coverage.
And then came December 14 at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut with the murder of 20 young students and 6 educators. This was a horrible tragedy and words can never adequately express the anger and sorrow of any murder and particularly those of our innocent youth. But with this tragedy the Administration had yet another diversion, one they didn’t need to hype, for the media would do it for Obama.
And yet another crisis is just over the horizon. The next will be Federal debt limit debates in which Obama will be campaigning to increase another one to two trillion dollars. And the supportive news media will give audience to those professing that the President should again have the last word, totally oblivious to the tragedy of Benghazi that occurred four months ago and the many unanswered questions surrounding the event.
Perhaps there is no cover up. Perhaps the failure of providing enhanced security on the anniversary of September 11 was the result of incompetency on the part of the Administration and State Department. Perhaps Ambassador Rice’s assertions of the attack were simply rather stupid interpretations of known facts. Perhaps the attempts to lay blame on a video leading to a non-existing demonstration in Benghazi was not politically motivated.
However, if these suppositions bear any resemblance of fact, why has the Administration and State Department continued to remain mute on providing the details? For an Administration formerly professing it would set the standard for transparency, why has it continually demonstrated its lack of honesty and openness?
Absent any formal statements from our President and Secretary of State, it gives rise to speculation that the Administration does not want their actions and reasoning made known to the public. And without such statements we are left to either blindly accept this absence or speculate.
During the campaign, the narrative was advanced that “Osama Bin Laden is dead, and General Motors is alive.” Further, the assertion was that al-Qaeda had been driven into the ground sufficiently with only a few “remnants” of the radical Islamic terrorist organization remaining. However, remnants typically don’t grow and spread as the attack and murders at Benghazi demonstrated. To sustain the created narrative, it was paramount that another alternate justification for the attacks be pursued.
My own speculative beliefs are assumptive of the following:
- The Administration and State Department erroneously believed the Muslim world was increasingly supportive of the President and hence promoted the theory that al-Qaeda was reduced to a minimal threat.
- That belief manifested itself in the lack of concern for security in the American embassies in Muslim states, and hence rejection of expanded military security at potential hotspots. Beefing up security would signal that the narrative was in error.
- When the actual attack began, someone in the re-election campaign expressed concern that the action would run counter to the narrative and potentially backfire in the President’s face.
- The search began for something on which to blame the attacks and an obscure video was remembered or found to present the best available foil.
- U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice was either summoned or volunteered to present the talking points of 1) a spontaneous demonstration that became violent, and 2) the cause for the spontaneous demonstration was the video.
- As the actual facts became clearer through the reports of some honest reporters, the Administration began using the “no comment, it’s being investigated by the FBI” rhetoric.
- The strategy of the re-election campaign then prompted the President to avoid any reference to the attacks until after the election when another crisis could take the forefront of the news cycle.
- The fiscal cliff was that crisis and the President’s adherence to his single and repeated demand for taxes on the wealthy and his resistance to propose any meaningful tax cuts is the ploy to keep Benghazi off the news and further rob the spotlight of Benghazi from liberal press coverage. The unexpected and unanticipated Gaza rocket attacks on Israel, the Egyptian dictator’s actions, the Syrian rebellion, and the Michigan right-to-work state law and finally the Sandy Hook murders were further news stories that could distract news people. Truly icing on the cake.
- The strategy of the Administration was to break the back of the Republican Party on the tax issue. As the President emerged victorious with his “tax the rich” campaign, attempts by Republicans to pursue further investigation of Benghazi would then allow the Democrats to claim he is the victim of petty politics.
- And should the Republicans pursue Benghazi, as they well should, the strategy will then morph into the Watergate stall, likely with claims of executive privilege to forestall any meaningful appearances before Congress.
It appeared that finally Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be testifying before both House and Senate committees later this month, answering questions regarding the sequence of events prior to the attacks, and how State hopes to prevent future similar such incidents. I doubt that anything new will come out of her testimony but a simple recap of everything already on the record. Likely the silence buried deep in our newspaper by the main stream media is hoped by the Administration to remain there.
However, the significant questions that Congress needs to ask U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice under oath are 1) who specifically either directed her to give the video interviews on five networks, or, 2) did she volunteer to give the interviews, 3) who provided her the talking points she presented, and, 4) did she accept the talking points at face value or question their validity. Again, I expect nothing significant to come of her testimony, should it ever happen.
I don’t personally believe that the President or the Administration in advance knowingly suspected the potential of four American being murdered. There was at the very least an absence of good judgment in not anticipating the prospects of trouble on or around September 11 and thereby directing enhanced security at those embassies. I do however believe the Administration was so politically married to their narrative that they felt any deviation would dilute the power of its message and acceptance and contribute potentially to the President’s defeat. Rather than an honest admission of error they, like Richard Nixon, have thus engaged in covering up the mistakes in hopes that over time, with the able assistance of main stream media, they will evaporate like a morning fog.
If you were truly without blame in the shoes of the President, wouldn’t you seek to banish or refute the suspicions surrounding Benghazi? With his silence of four months it portrays the impression that he is covering up the errors of his Administration. But expect the President to attempt to make the debt ceiling and gun control the leading stories in the national news. The big question for me is will Congress have the resolve, commitment and persistence to not be distracted and truly seek the truth of Benghazi.