This election’s “October surprise” may turn out to be the truth about something that happened in September.
Remember the rush by the Obama administration to blame the deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, on a reaction to a movie trailer offensive to Muslims? Well, like everything else in the Obama administration, that story had an expiration date. Here’s ABC News’ Jonathan Karl explaining:
For those who can’t/won’t watch the video, here’s the relevant section from Karl, citing a “senior State Department official”:
At the time [of the Benghazi killings], as you recall, we were told it was a protest that went bad and became an attack. Now we are told there was no protest going on outside that embassy. The first indication that they heard anything outside the walls of the … consulate compound was an explosion from gunfire.
Read that again: “There was no protest going on outside that embassy.” It’s not that the protest isn’t what led to the murders of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans; it’s long been suspected that the alleged protest was used as a diversion, created or merely convenient, by the terrorists who wanted to kill Stevens. Rather, there was no protest to begin with.
This is a damning revelation for Obama, who repeatedly invoked the video in his public remarks about the attack. It’s all the more so because Obama’s response to Mitt Romney’s statement about the attack in Benghazi and same-day protest in Cairo, Egypt, was that the Republican has “a tendency to shoot first and aim later.”
Kind of like blaming a non-existent protest based on an obscure movie for sparking the death of our ambassador, Mr. President?
Combine this news with another story reported this week for the first time:
A U.S. security officer twice asked his State Department superiors for more security agents for the American mission in Benghazi months before an attack that killed the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans, but he got no response.
The officer, Eric Nordstrom, who was based in Tripoli until about two months before the September attack, said a State Department official, Charlene Lamb, wanted to keep the number of U.S. security personnel in Benghazi “artificially low,” according to a memo summarizing his comments to a congressional committee that was obtained by Reuters.
The consequences of this action, quite obviously, were most grave and tragic for Stevens, the other three Americans killed, and their families.
But these stories also ought to have serious ramifications in the presidential election. A president who is touting his competence and foreign-policy success has a lot of explaining to do about incompetence and a tragedy overseas.
– By Kyle Wingfield