CP Opinion

Thursday, Oct 23, 2014

Benghazi Baloney

November 6, 2012|1:20 pm

The mystery surrounding the 9/11 terror attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi continues to deepen. One of the more recent revelations in the ever unfolding story about the attack involves the suspicious departure of General Carter Ham, commander of AFRICOM. Allegations have been made that as the general was mobilizing a rapid response force to come to the aid of the besieged consulate, he was told to stand down. (That siege, as we all know, resulted in the death of America's Libyan ambassador and three others, including two Navy Seals.) According to reports, General Ham told those telling him to stand down to take a hike. His job was to protect American lives and he had no intention of standing by while a terrorist attack was underway in his area of command. For this "insubordination," he was purportedly relieved of his command.

These revelations, if true, are disturbing to say the least and raise yet more questions about exactly what the Obama administration knew about the threat to our consulate in Benghazi, when they knew it, and why they failed to act in time to prevent this tragedy from occurring. The idea that American personnel serving abroad would be abandoned in a moment of mortal need for political reasons is nothing short of reprehensible.

To be sure, a military intervention in Benghazi would have undercut the narrative put forth by the Administration that Al-Qaeda was as dead as Osama Bin Laden and that thanks to the courage and decisiveness of Barack Hussein Obama, Americans have little or nothing to fear from this now defunct terrorist organization. This narrative has been central to Mr. Obama's reelection campaign. Doubtless that's why the Administration pedaled the myth that the attack was a spontaneous reaction to a video mocking the prophet Mohammed, a myth that has now been clearly been debunked.

But protecting the President's political career isn't the job of our men and women in uniform. They have pledged their lives to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. They live by a creed that says no soldier will ever leave a fallen comrade behind. They expect that their commanders above them – the Commander in Chief most of all – will have their backs when it counts, but in this instance a general may have been asked to act in a way that directly contradicted the creed by which he and his soldiers have pledged to live and die. And now the question that begs for an answer is: Was General Ham asked to betray the Soldier's creed in the service of one man's political ambitions?

For now, these allegations are just that – unsubstantiated allegations. All that's known for sure is that General Ham is scheduled to relinquish command of AFRICOM and plans to retire. The real story is not likely to be fully known until the election is over – and that's the goal of the O-Team's filibuster. Nevertheless, the truth needs to be made known. The American people are entitled to know if they can trust their government to keep them safe, and whether their security, and that of their fellow citizens, is negotiable for political gain.

True to form, President Obama is feigning umbrage that anyone would dare question the integrity of his administration's response to the Benghazi attack. That line of response is just not acceptable for the president who pledged to preside over the most transparent administration in history. Until the President and his Secretary of State give the American people a clear and comprehensive account of what really happened in Benghazi and why, the American people's trust in them will continue to be undermined. It's hard to trust someone who doesn't respect you enough to tell you the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Sadly, when it comes to Benghazi, all we've gotten from the President and his minions thus far is a bunch of baloney.

Ken Connor is Chairman of the Center for a Just Society in Washington, DC and a nationally recognized trial lawyer who represented Governor Jeb Bush in the Terri Schiavo case. Connor was formerly President of the Family Research Council, Chairman of the Board of CareNet, and Vice Chairman of Americans United for Life. For more articles and resources from Mr. Connor and the Center for a Just Society, go to www.ajustsociety.org. Your feedback is welcome; please email info@ajustsociety.org.
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