The White House’s tangled web • Fred Johnson
The White House narrative for the election was supposed to go something like this: Thanks to Obama’s tough policies and actions, al-Qaeda has been defeated. Thanks to Obama’s apology tours in the Middle-East and the Arab Spring, the U.S. is now loved by the Arab countries.
The coordinated and heavily armed attack on our Libyan embassy on Sept. 11, killing four Americans including our Ambassador showed that al-Qaeda is as strong and dangerous as ever. The Obama administration first denied that terrorist were involved. They blamed the attack on a movie produced by an American. UN Ambassador Susan Rice was sent to Sunday news shows claiming the attack was a “spontaneous outbreak” of violence provoked by a “hateful” movie denigrating Muslim prophet Muhammad. President Obama even blamed the movie when he spoke at the United Nations two weeks after the attack.
However, the Congressional investigation of the attack has revealed that the White House had been informed on day one that al-Qaeda terrorists were responsible for the murders of U.S. Ambassador Stevens. They also learned that Ambassador Stevens asked for more security and the request was denied.
Now the White House blames our intelligence agencies for giving them false information and Joe Biden claimed in the Vice Presidential debate that the request for more security did not reach the White House. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, blames the confusion on the “fog of war.”
There are many questions for the Congressional investigators, such as; in the months before the attack why did Washington reduce security in Benghazi; despite pleas for reinforcements from the folks on the ground? Who told the White House the false information that it was a spontaneous demonstration? Why did President Obama blame the movie in his UN speech two weeks after the attack when it was known on day one that it was an al-Qaeda attack? Was the White House unaware of the request for more security as Joe Biden claims? Why was CNN the first to enter the embassy compound within days after the attack while it took weeks for the FBI to secure the compound? Why was President Obama’s immediate response to the attack to jet off to Las Vegas for a fundraiser?
As Sir Walter Scott put it; “Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!”
Printed in the October 18, 2012 edition