May 7, 2013

Only 400 Miles To Benghazi

I'm waiting for a movie to be made titled as above. It is 404 miles from Tripoli to Benghazi as the crow flies. And a C-130J loaded with armed soldiers will take that direct course traveling much faster than a crow - over 410 mph.

In less than two hours Stevens and the others could have been rescued in the midst of an eight hour long attack. If jet fighters were sent they could have arrived even faster to provide a CAP capability over the embattled Americans.

From CBS News:
The deputy of slain U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens has told congressional investigators that a team of Special Forces prepared to fly from Tripoli to Benghazi during the Sept. 11, 2012 attacks was forbidden from doing so by U.S. Special Operations Command Africa.

The account from Gregory Hicks is in stark contrast to assertions from the Obama administration, which insisted that nobody was ever told to stand down and that all available resources were utilized. Hicks gave private testimony to congressional investigators last month in advance of his upcoming appearance at a congressional hearing Wednesday.
Who had the authority to force these soldiers to stand down as they were preparing to board the plane? One answer is here and his initials are Barack Hussein Obama.
According to the source, when the attack on the Consulate occurred, a specific chain of command to gain verbal permission to move special-forces in must have occurred. SOCAFRICA commander Lieutenant Col. Gibson would have contacted a desk officer at the time, asking for that permission.

That desk officer would have called Marine Corps Col. George Bristol, then in command of Joint Special Operations Task Force-Trans Sahara. From there, Bristol would have made contact with Rear Admiral Brian Losey, then Commander of Special Operations Command Africa. Losey would have contacted four-star General Carter Ham, commander of U.S. AFRICOM at the time.

“Ham answers directly to the President of the United States,” said the source. It wasn’t a low-level bureaucrat making the call, the source adamantly added.

That call may have been made early in the engagement. Both Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey testified in January that they had no further communication with President Barack Obama after an initial briefing in the early hours of the Benghazi crisis, which continued through the night.


Subvet said...

I don't think Obama intentionally wanted anyone killed, he's just so damned out of his league is the real problem.

The man couldn't pour piss out of a boot if the instructions were stamped on the heel. Yet he says all the nice words off his teleprompter, looks good in a suit and promises the moon with a back fence around it to his core supporters.


We're seeing something that would have appeared impossible at one time, i.e. a Chief Executive more incompetent than Jimmy Carter.

LL said...

Obama wanted a consistent message for his re-election campaign, to wit, he personally crushed al Qaeda and almost single handedly killed bin Laden. It's not unusual for the Nobel Prize winning president to want that sort of message to go out.

And if a few Americans die - well, you can't make an omelet without breaking a few eggs. (What does it matter?)

If there is a message and a theme to come from Benghazi, this is it.

WoFat said...

He is some distance from real life. To him (I think) it's all drama.

sig94 said...

Subvet - that piss boot analogy, can't get it out of my head.

sig94 said...

LL - the only thing is this, why wouldn't he send in the troops to rescue Stevens and appear to the American electorate as a man who is in control rather than a boob? I just think that something else was going on for this snafu to occur so close to the election. He over reached on something else.

sig94 said...

WoFat - he's a tool. And not the sharpest one in the bag.

Woodsterman (Odie) said...

Obama and Clinton committed treason.

Anonymous said...

Looking at the timeline of events in Benghazi it seems Ambassador Stevens was dead within the first hour (the spreadsheet going around on conservative blogs has the the consulate abandoned less than 2 hours after the first shots fired), so loading up planes in Tripoli wouldn't have mattered. The CIA officers who were killed were trying to rescue the consulate staff, and were killed about 2 hours after that. With regard to planes out of Tripoli, that's still cutting it pretty close. Panetta apparently ordered a drone to flyover during that time, so it's not like Washington was completely ignoring it, of course more could have been done. But all this seems like monday-morning-quarterbacking to me.

So the big problem is that the State Dept and CIA were confused over whether it had anything to do with an anti-Muslim video, AND whether requests for more security were ignored. I don't know what to make of the video-- supposedly witnesses say the militants were claiming the video was their impetus, and there were other protests in the Arab world over that video at the time, so it's maybe a reasonable misunderstanding; it is a big leap to claim deliberate cover-up for what looks like a bureaucratic goof.

Far more troubling is the request for more security that went ignored. Perhaps the GOP-controlled congress shouldn't have cut the funding to the State Dept., especially when they were warned it could lead to diplomatic security problems.