Benghazi: Guest Post by Stan Hatch
With the Benghazi investigation starting, we are forced to think about it again.
Was Benghazi a cover up? It would not be the first time in presidential history. Look at Eisenhower’s denial of the U-2 flights over Russia. He planned them. Or Kennedy’s involvement in the Bay of Pigs. He approved it. Remember the Contra affair. Reagan was ultimately responsible. The US is not alone in this. The Russians denied shooting down the Korean airliner traveling from Alaska to Japan that strayed into Russian air space. The Russians denied there were missiles in Cuba. The Cold War is full of denials.
Other embassies have been attacked with little we could do about it. Tehran in 1979. Beirut in 1983. Our military bases and ships have been attacked. The list goes on. What makes Benghazi different is, if there was a deliberate cover-up, it was done for the sole purpose of winning a national election. The American public deserves better.
Remember Watergate? Nixon, according to the Frost interviews, thought it was OK because he was President. Does Obama think this?
Did covering up Benghazi, if it happened, win Obama big points in winning the election? Undoubtedly. Would he have won anyway? Probably, but he certainly did not know that at the time.
Elections are like wars, I suppose. It only matters who wins. Morals really sink to the depths in wars. WWII is full of examples. But that is war. I hope we do not have to tolerate it in US politics. Taking the high road does not win elections, many would say. One PAC leader for Obama said he would like to run a negative ad after the election so he could say 101% of his ads were negative. Because they work. However, there has to be some line on where to stop in a campaign. Candidates will differ in their interpretation of the facts and what the facts are. That is called debating or lawyering. But trying to manufacture the facts by lying about them is going too far.
I’m reminded of Hillary’s campaign pledge “I’m the one who will take that call at 2:00 AM and will know what to do and will do it.” Maybe she got the call and wanted to respond but Obama overruled her. He would have had to approve any military action. I recall Biden’s statements in the campaign “We did not know.” We’ll see. Maybe that’s according to his first hand knowledge. Lawyers!
Why pursue the truth? We owe it to our diplomats who were killed and those who lost their lives while disobeying orders from the State Department and defending the embassy, against all odds. Had this happened on the battlefield, they would be considered for the Medal of Honor.
We also need to know who was responsible.
Maybe we also need to think about our foreign policy in general. We definitely did not want to get involved in WWII. We held out for a couple years while the hostilities were in full force. However we participated indirectly. We blockaded Japan to oppose its military actions against China. We supplied the British in the fight against Germany. Eventually the Germans reacted by sinking our convoys with their U-boats and Japan attacked us at Pearl Harbor.
We hope that we will not have to increase our military role in the Middle East or other parts of the world. We certainly have domestic problems that need our resources. But it might. The other side does not show many signs of backing down. We need to think with our allies how far we will let this go before we all become more directly involved.