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Sestak, others question Benghazi response
Delaware County Daily Times ^ | October 31, 2012 | Gil Spencer

Posted on 10/31/2012 2:39:42 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife

If you have serious questions about what happened in Benghazi on Sept. 11, you are not alone. Former admiral, congressman and Democrat Joe Sestak has questions, too.

“There are questions the administration needs to answer,” Sestak said Monday morning as Hurricane Sandy rolled into Delco. “Put politics aside, something did go wrong.”

That, of course, is the understatement of the year.

Four Americans are dead, including U.S. ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens. They were killed in a terrorist attack that lasted seven hours and included several desperate calls for help. But no help came.

Why?

Months before the fatal attack, Stevens expressed deep concern about deteriorating security for U.S. personnel inside the African country.

“There were enough indications that security was not very good there at all,” Sestak said. “When you have people ask for more security, you give it to them.”

To Sestak, it is as simple as that. But that didn’t happen either. Why?

Sestak is no novice when it comes to these matters. He worked with the National Security Council in the Clinton White House and was a chief strategist for “Deep Blue,” the Navy’s anti-terrorism unit.

He knows how these tough decisions get made (and not made) at the top of the military and civilian chains of command. He also knows how screwed up things can get in the “fog of war.” He is not one to quickly place blame before all the facts are in. And yet, this debacle has him shaking his head.

“This hasn’t been the most commanding of performances,” is the way he put it to me.

His most pressing question: “Why wasn’t there a military response?”

According to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, it was because the brass in Washington couldn’t get a clear understanding of what was happening on the ground.

“A basic principle,” said Panetta, “is that you don’t deploy forces into harm’s way without knowing what’s going on; without having some real-time information about what’s taking place. And as a result of not having that kind of information, the commander who was on the ground in that area, Gen. (Carter) Ham, Gen. Dempsey and I felt very strongly that we could not put forces at risk in that situation.”

But there was some “real-time information.” There were radio communications, emails and there were drones flying over the site. There were military assets within one or two hours of striking distance of the attack.

None were used.

Then there is the recent statement from President Obama, who said that the first thing he did when notified of the attack was to give a “directive” to “make sure we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to do. I guarantee you everybody in the CIA and military knew the No. 1 priority was making sure our people are safe.”

Was this order from the commander in chief disobeyed?

If that was the No. 1 priority as ordered by the president of the United States, somebody sure failed to accomplish it — or even to try.

Gen. Ham has since been relieved as head of African Command for reasons that have not been made public.

Attempts by the administration to fob this all off on our intelligence agencies are being met with skepticism, if not downright cynicism.

Weeks after the event, White House officials cited intelligence briefings that called the attack “spontaneous” and motivated by an anti-Islamic video.

Sestak, for one, seems to think this a bit too convenient. He finds it hard to believe there wasn’t a “more inclusive assessment” that mentioned “organized jihadists” as the leaders of a planned terrorist attack.

That is, after all, the accepted consensus now.

The president says that an investigation into this “tragedy” is under way and we will get to the bottom of what happened.

But who would know better what happened than the president himself?

And why hasn’t he told us? Was he too distracted by his re-election campaign to perform his day job of protecting American lives?

If he gave a directive to secure the consulate, let’s see it. It must be in writing somewhere. If his orders to protect embassy personnel and secure the consulate weren’t obeyed, who didn’t obey them? And why?

Bing West, author, soldier and former assistant secretary of defense, has already come to one damning conclusion: “For our top leadership, with all the technological and military tools at their disposal, to have done nothing for seven hours was a joint civilian and military failure of initiative and nerve.”

Sestak won’t go that far. But he did say he doesn’t know of any practical reason why some more answers haven’t been given to the American people. It’s been more than six weeks.

For the first two, intentionally or not, this administration misled the country about what happened in Libya that night and it’s still not clear why.

“We need to have a thorough and quick investigation on this,” Sestak said. And yet we’re not getting it. I cannot tell you why it is taking the amount of time they say it will.”

But a reasonable guess is the administration is simply stonewalling until after the election.

“If there is stonewalling, it’s not right,” Sestak said. “I believe in accountability and in transparency.”

On this matter, from this administration, there has been precious little of either.

But this isn’t going away, especially if this president is re-elected next week.

Best case scenario: A tragic embarrassment of misjudgments.

Worst? Criminal malfeasance at the highest level of government. And if that can be shown, Hurricane Sandy will have nothing on Hurricane Benghazi.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Government
KEYWORDS: benghazi; embassymurders; media; obamaappeasement; shadowwars; threatmatrix

1 posted on 10/31/2012 2:39:45 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

If major Democrat players become interested in this, Obama won’t survive even if he wins the election.

Something occurred to me today.

Obama has bluffed his way along his whole presidency. Asked to provide proof he was a naturalized citizen, he provided several versions that were not valid documents. Other than that, he has ignored requests. Asked for documents from his education background, he has refused.

This having worked, he probably thinks he doesn’t need to provide proof of what took place now.

Is this guy ever in store for a rude awakening.

The shuck and jive isn’t going to work this time.

This guy strikes me as a third grader that’s about to get sent to the principal’s office. We’ve all had it with him. It’s time to fess up Mr. Pres__nt Resident.


2 posted on 10/31/2012 2:53:49 AM PDT by DoughtyOne (Pres__ent Resident NBC NRD N3pmCs HCR / no birth C / no req docs / no 3pm calls / he can read)
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To: DoughtyOne

The media will never recover from this most egregious butt cover for their Obama.


3 posted on 10/31/2012 3:05:07 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I do think the U. S. public is hip to what has been going on, and is getting very tired of it.

Newspaper endorsements aren’t really worth the paper they’re written on these days. I wonder why. /s


4 posted on 10/31/2012 3:08:46 AM PDT by DoughtyOne (Pres__ent Resident NBC NRD N3pmCs HCR / no birth C / no req docs / no 3pm calls / he can read)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

threatmatrix in the keyword section will bring up all of the Benghazi articles. If I happened to miss one or two, please add threatmatrix to the keywords if you don't see it there. Or feel free to use the banner and link where you think it might be appropriate. Thank you.

This link is also on my profile page.

5 posted on 10/31/2012 3:26:24 AM PDT by MestaMachine (obama kills and none dare call it treason)
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To: DoughtyOne

Hillary & Hussein have been busily pointing fingers at each other (couched in nice phrases, of course); and must surely now be asking themselves just when will the fickle public GET OVER Benghazi. REMEMBER BENGHAZI!!


6 posted on 10/31/2012 3:40:08 AM PDT by Twinkie (REMEMBER BENGHAZI !!!!)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Crawl back under your rock, Admiral. We got this one.

God save us from the Perfuned Princes.


7 posted on 10/31/2012 3:41:22 AM PDT by SargeK
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To: SargeK

They RE-ELECTED SESTAK??? geesh.


8 posted on 10/31/2012 4:08:06 AM PDT by Ann Archy ( ABORTION...the HUMAN Sacrifice to the god of Convenience.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Sestak is scum. If his mouth is moving, he’s cooking something islamist.


9 posted on 10/31/2012 4:11:45 AM PDT by Hardraade (http://junipersec.wordpress.com (I will fear no muslim))
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To: Hardraade

The author, Gil Spencer, makes up for it.


10 posted on 10/31/2012 4:21:54 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: DoughtyOne

Interesting. A lot of Delaware County loves Sestak (who overstepped, ran for the Senate and was defeated by Toomey, thank God). If he’s questioning the administration response on Benghazi, Delco could go red.


11 posted on 10/31/2012 4:38:06 AM PDT by SueRae (See it? Hell, I can TASTE November from my house!)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

12 posted on 10/31/2012 4:42:44 AM PDT by Diogenesis (Vi veri veniversum vivus vici)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

What Benghazi response?
There was no response. That’s the problem.
Nobody in the chain of cammand from the bottom to the top would make the decision to save Americans.
Why does a feet-on-the-ground operational decision have to be made at the top level. It should be made at the lowest level necessary to get the job done. Every person in the chain of command should have the ability and authority to make a decision to save Americans lives. Abandoning this concept turns our military men in the field into the type of soldiers that we have beaten every time for this very reason. Our men have always been trained to take charge if the man above them is removed. Whay has this changed?


13 posted on 10/31/2012 4:45:05 AM PDT by BuffaloJack (Children, pets, and slaves get taken care of. Free Men take care of themselves.)
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To: BuffaloJack

What Benghazi response?
There was no response. That’s the problem.
Nobody in the chain of command from the bottom to the top would make the decision to save Americans.
Why does a feet-on-the-ground operational decision have to be made at the top level? It should be made at the lowest level necessary to get the job done. Every person in the chain of command should have the ability and authority to make a decision to save Americans lives. Abandoning this concept turns our military men in the field into the type of soldiers that we have beaten every time for this very reason. Our men have always been trained to take charge if the man above them is removed. Why has this changed?


14 posted on 10/31/2012 4:47:36 AM PDT by BuffaloJack (Children, pets, and slaves get taken care of. Free Men take care of themselves.)
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Comment #15 Removed by Moderator

To: Servant of the Cross

Bump!


16 posted on 10/31/2012 5:35:34 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

I hope people in Delaware County still read the Daily Times. This is a pretty hard hitting article and more like it may turn DelCo red again. This is needed for a Romney win in PA.


17 posted on 10/31/2012 5:46:28 AM PDT by ConservativeInPA (In a previous life I was ...)
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To: fatima; Fresh Wind; st.eqed; xsmommy; House Atreides; Nowhere Man; South Hawthorne; brityank; ...

PA Ping!

If you want on/off the PA Ping List, please freepmail me.

If you see posts of interest to Pennsylvanians, please ping me.

Thanks!


18 posted on 10/31/2012 5:58:21 AM PDT by randita
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Since when was General Ham ‘On the Ground’ in that area?

Everything I have read says he was in Germany, at his Command Location.

I am pretty sure if Ham had ‘been on the ground in Libya/Bengazhi’, this would have ended in an entirely different manner.


19 posted on 10/31/2012 6:29:15 AM PDT by ridesthemiles
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To: ridesthemiles

Hmm, I thought he was actually in DC;/


20 posted on 10/31/2012 7:23:51 AM PDT by Hanna548 (s)
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To: Twinkie

Yes, I agree with you there. Remember Benghazi.


21 posted on 10/31/2012 10:54:07 AM PDT by DoughtyOne (Pres__ent Resident NBC NRD N3pmCs HCR / no birth C / no req docs / no 3pm calls / he can read)
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To: SueRae

Great...


22 posted on 10/31/2012 10:54:35 AM PDT by DoughtyOne (Pres__ent Resident NBC NRD N3pmCs HCR / no birth C / no req docs / no 3pm calls / he can read)
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