Mike Kueber's Blog

November 2, 2012

Benghazi

Filed under: Issues,Media,Politics — Mike Kueber @ 7:49 am
Tags: , , ,

While driving to and from Ohio (pre-Sandy), I had the opportunity to listen to a lot of conservative radio shows, and their focus was predominantly on the 9/11 attack on Benghazi and the killing of four Americans.  To use a term from my youth, coverage was “wall-to-wall,” and the talk-show hosts were almost apoplectic.  But when I went on-line to read what other media outlets thought about this scandal, there was almost nothing outside of Fox News.  Even when Charles Woods, the father of one of the killed Americans, went public with his belief that his son Tyrone died after rescuing several Americans because some politicians ordered him to be abandoned, the mainstream media ignored the story.  As one of the conservative pundits pointed out, this treatment was in stark contrast to the generous media treatment of loony Cindy Sheehan while she was stalking Bush-43. 

Like the talk-show hosts, I am struck by the mainstream media’s willingness to buy the Obama administration’s claim that it is investigating the Benghazi debacle and will provide a report as soon the election is over.  It’s a good thing Woodward & Bernstein didn’t afford the Nixon administration a similar courtesy. 

Although Fox News appears to be the only media outlet actively investigating Benghazi, I am heartened that conservative columnists at the Washington Post are beginning to weigh-in, too.  Jennifer Rubin of the Right Turn blog provides the most clarion call:  

  • The Benghazi debacle has three parts: how we neglected security while al-Qaeda was building a presence in Libya; whether the administration tried to mislead the public as to the nature of the attack; and now whether the administration denied pleas for help from operatives on the ground at the consulate.  So how about it, Mr. President — who called off a rescue and why? President Obama, a little more than a week before the election, won’t tell Americans what happened. Well, why should he — the press doesn’t hound him, the liberal elite still rushes to his defense, and his White House attack dogs bark “Politics!” whenever legitimate questions are asked.
  • Meanwhile, the father of slain SEAL Tyrone Woods is furious with the administration, demanding to know why his son wasn’t saved when “apparently even the State Department had a live stream and was aware of their calls for help. My son wasn’t even there. He was at a safe house about a mile away. He got the distress call; he heard them crying for help; that’s why he and Glen risked their lives to go that extra mile just to take care of the situation. And I’m sure that wasn’t the only one received that distress call — you know, ‘Come save our lives.’”
  • Did Defense Secretary Leon Panetta take it upon himself to call off any rescue effort? (He told the press on Thursday that the Pentagon lacked clear information as to what was going on.) Where was the president and did he or some other official take it upon himself to deny help to the trapped Americans?  This is an appalling tale of, at the very least, gross incompetency and utter lack of transparency. The media, including those who continue to carry Obama’s political water, should be demanding Obama answer questions, before the election.

As Sean Hannity has subsequently pointed out, the Obama administration was quick to put out Situation Room photos after the killing of Osama and the handling of Hurricane Sandy, but not so quick to show Situation Room photos of those involved in the handling of the Benghazi attack.  Didn’t someone say that success has a multitude of fathers while failure is an orphan?   

Washington Post columnist David Ignatius has also provided some pressure for the Obama administration to come clean:   

  • The attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi has become a political football in the presidential campaign, with all the grandstanding and misinformation that entails. But Fox News has raised questions about the attack that deserve a clearer answer from the Obama administration.  Fox’s Jennifer Griffin reported Friday that CIA officers in Benghazi had been told to “stand down” when they wanted to deploy from their base at the annex to repel the attack on the consulate, about a mile away. Fox also reported that the officers requested military support when the annex came under fire that night but that their request had been denied.  The Benghazi tragedy was amplified by Charles Woods, the father of slain CIA contractor Tyrone Woods. He told Fox’s Sean Hannity that White House officials who didn’t authorize military strikes to save the embattled CIA annex were “cowards” and “are guilty of murdering my son.”

The mainstream media handling of Benghazi is further proof that this formerly proud institution has been reduced to “carrying water for Obama.”  How sad.

p.s., although the White House ignored Fox News investigation of this scandal, it apparently listened to the criticism from Ignatious and today provided him with a detailed timeline that rebuts key elements of the Fox reports.

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