Benghazi Gate

It's not getting a lot of coverage in the liberal blogosphere, but you should be aware that conservatives think the president deliberately ordered military support to "stand down" during the attack on the consulate in Benghazi. Yep. That's right. He told the military and CIA to "stand down" and intentionally allowed four Americans to be killed by evil-doers -- obviously because the president is insane and wouldn't have anything to lose by giving such an order. This president is clearly terrified of attacking and killing terrorists -- just ask Bin Laden, Al-Awlaki and countless other dead terrorists in Afpak and Yemen.

The fact of the matter is, according to an NSC spokesman, the president didn't give that order, nor did anyone in the White House. Secretary Panetta, General Ham and General Dempsey delayed further military intervention because it was unclear what was happening during the attack. U.S. soldiers firing at civilian protesters would've looked pretty bad in the eyes of the world. Besides, where would the soldiers have come from? They're not stationed around the corner, nor can they be beamed in like Star Trek. Anyway, all of this "Benghazi Gate" talk is interesting coming from a group of conservatives who for eight years insisted that it was unpatriotic to undermine the commander-in-chief while troops were in harm's way.

Speaking of those eight years, what about embassy and consulate security under the great protectors Bush and Cheney?

June 14, 2002, U.S. consulate in Karachi, Pakistan
Suicide bomber kills 12 and injures 51.

February 20, 2003, international diplomatic compound in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Truck bomb kills 17.

February 28, 2003, U.S. consulate in Karachi, Pakistan
Gunmen on motorcycles killed two consulate guards.

July 30, 2004, U.S. embassy in Taskkent, Uzbekistan
Suicide bomber kills two.

December 6, 2004, U.S. consulate in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Militants stormed and occupied perimeter wall. Five killed, 10 wounded.

March 2, 2006, U.S. consulate in Karachi, Pakistan
Suicide car bomber killed four, including a U.S. diplomate directly targeted by the assailants.

September 12, 2006, U.S. embassy in Damascus, Syria
Gunmen attacked embassy with grenades, automatic weapons, and a car bomb (though second truck bomb failed to detonate). One killed and 13 wounded.

January 12, 2007, U.S. embassy in Athens, Greece
A rocket-propelled grenade was fired at the embassy building. No one was injured.

July 9, 2008, U.S. consulate in Istanbul, Turkey
Armed men attacked consulate with pistols and shotguns. Three policemen killed.

March 18, 2008, U.S. embassy in Sana'a, Yemen
Mortar attack misses embassy, hits nearby girls' school instead.

September 17, 2008, U.S. embassy in Sana'a, Yemen
Militants dressed as policemen attacked the embassy with RPGs, rifles, grenades and car bombs. Six Yemeni soldiers and seven civilians were killed. Sixteen more were injured.

  • BuffaloBuckeye

    I received a ‘forwarded” (never a good sign) eamil from a friend of mine who is severely conservative as well as evangelical. The subject line was something to the effect of ‘Obama embarrasses the USA in front of the world’, or something akin, with attached photos of mocking floats from the Carnival in Dusseldorf.

    I replied back to him that a) Germans do have an underappreciated sense of humor and that b) these photos were from the 2008 Carnival; well before Obama was elected . To get my friend up do speed, I sent him the graph of the BBC’s recent poll of who Europeans prefer to be elected, Obama or romney.

    He replied back “Of course, they are all socialist or dictatorships!” I ended the exchange by pointing out that at least the clerics in Pakistan back romney..

    Oh, the initial email started out with his proclamation that, “even as conservative as I am, if JFK were running, I’d vote for him, but not this guy (Obama).” I can’t imagine why. Actually, I can.

    • Victor_the_Crab

      Is it because he’s a ni[CLANG]?

      • BuffaloBuckeye

        Don’t want to speculate, but most likely.

  • Robert

    Bob, you left one off the list.


  • nicole
  • GrafZeppelin127

    I really don’t think there’s any point anymore in trying to get conservatives to stop and ask themselves whether it makes sense for Obama to actually do, or want to do, whatever it is they accuse him of doing. Unreasonable people will unreasonably believe that other people will act unreasonably.

    I wrote a diary on Daily Kos about this recently. The impetus was when I read a comment on Facebook by a friend of a friend that Obama, quote, “tried to force veterans to pay for their own war injuries.” It took about 30 seconds to find that this was a reference to a proposal made during the early development of the health care law, which was to have private insurance (instead of the V.A.) cover service-related medical issues for veterans who have private coverage, at no additional cost to the veteran, saving the government money. Veterans groups didn’t like it and the proposal was abandoned. But how do you get from a modest proposal to bill private insurers instead of the V.A. for service-related injuries, to “Obama tried to force veterans to pay for their own war injuries”?

    (There was also a viral email attributing a quote to the President that was actually written by a right-wing “satirist”, which contributed to the spreading of this meme. My point is that the idea is unreasonable to begin with.)

    After some back-and-forth about “framing” with a commenter, who was basically trying to blame the administration for this ridiculous misperception, the commenter tried to argue that it was reasonable for people to think that “Obama tried to force veterans to pay for their own war injuries,” because (1) as a veteran, the commenter was “suspicious of any commander-in-chief who’s not a veteran”; and (2) the fact that the plan existed and was “shot down” by the VFW provided a “kernel of truth” for the misperception.

    Which is, of course, ridiculous. (1) is a subjective bias that has no basis in fact, viz., there is no reason to believe that a commander-in-chief who is not a veteran would tend, by virtue of not being a veteran, to be unfair, cruel or abusive to veterans; and (2) the existence of a “plan” that was “shot down” does not by itself justify a belief in a completely imaginary, fictitious, made-up “plan” no matter how ridiculous, just because the made-up “plan” shares the same subject matter with the real one. Let’s say there was a proposal to spend [X] dollars to improve our national parks, and issue special temporary work permits for high school students who want to volunteer to help clean up and maintain the parks. Would it be reasonable to believe, based on this, that “Obama wants to enslave teenagers and force them at gunpoint to clean up government property!!!”

    And then there’s (3), which is that there is simply no reason why any president would want to “force veterans to pay for their own war injuries.” What possible benefit could any president possibly believe he could get by doing that? What constituency could he possibly believe that would benefit? What possible good, for him or anyone else, political or otherwise, could he possibly believe that would do? It makes ABSOLUTELY NO SENSE.

    Like I’ve said many times before, when you want to believe something badly enough, everything “proves” it. It’s when the initial desired belief is completely unreasonable that we start to go off the rails. I think “conservatives” stopped asking themselves whether their beliefs make sense a long time ago. They prefer this comforting, emotionally-satisfying fiction.

    • Brutlyhonest

      Unreasonable people will unreasonably believe that other people will act unreasonably.

      Bingo. The right knows that there is absolutely nothing they wouldn’t do to gain political power, so they expect the left to be the same. They conveniently ignore the fact that when Dems are in power, they are trying to govern; similarly Dems will compromise with a R President in order to govern.

      The people who brought us Iran/Contra (and essentially got away with it while Sainting the man in charge), naturally see deceit and subterfuge everywhere; it’s what they’d do.

      Their hypocrisy, particularly with support for veterans and their families, is never-ending. Can you imagine the poutrage if a theme of a DNC convention had been to ridicule purple heart recipients?

      I’ve been trying to find the words to adequately express my utter disgust with these chickenshit chickenhawks, but words fail me.

    • IrishGrrrl

      Wholeheartedly agree. The pre-existing idea among Conservatives that the President is evil makes any and all theories about his behavior, no matter how stupid or ugly, possible. They are predisposed to think that way, therefore they will think that way. Until you get rid of the predisposition, it’s not worth the time to change their minds. However, it is worth the time to debunk these lies insofar as it might affect the vote of a non-predisposed but ill informed/naive voter. If a lot of people and some of them in authority (Faux News for example) repeats the lie enough, the naive will believe it. So we’re obligated to counter their crap for the sake of the naive/ill informed. And in regards the predisposition, to get rid of such a thing would require miracles that produced by the one thing they trust more than anything else….their old, white man god (or his youthful version). Too bad the baby Jeebus can’t come down and clear all this sh*t up.

    • Treading_Water

      “Wizard’s First Rule: people are stupid.” Richard and Kahlan frowned even more. “People are stupid; given proper motivation, almost anyone will believe almost anything. Because people are stupid, they will believe a lie because they want to believe it’s true, or because they are afraid it might be true. People’s heads are full of knowledge, facts, and beliefs, and most of it is false, yet they think it all true. People are stupid; they can only rarely tell the difference between a lie and the truth, and yet they are confident they can, and so are all the easier to fool.”

      Wizard’s First Rule, Terry Goodkind.

      Also known as the FOX news business model.

  • 1933john

    What we have here is a Pseudo-October-Surprise.

  • gobrooklyn

    Obama’s critics have been desperately seeking his Katrina, Watergate and 9/11. Its no wonder they make shit up all the time.

  • missliberties

    Fox News reporting has debunked this claim if you look at Media Matters, but like Rev. Wright they have been focused on this story like a laser. The goal as I have said is to rile up the base so they are angry enought to get out and vote.

    Remember when Michelle Bachman insisted that the Census Workers were Obama’s Army coming to take you away? We are in that area of disbelief, but it works on some.

  • missliberties

    What the right is riling up the troops with lies to get them to the polls.

    They think ‘blaming the video’ equals blaming Christians. They are defending the felon that made this video because he was a coptic Christian.

    This is directly from Michelle Bachman supporters who have a problem with reality in the first place.

    This is all about getting feet to the voting booth.

  • Run2Live


  • GOVCHRIS1988

    There’s a word for this Bob, DESPERATE!!!! Come on, we knew they would not let this go, even after that assripping the President gave Romney during the second debate. They have lost on the one issue that Republicans have dominated, unfairly I might add, the issue of Foreign Policy. They have a Presidential ticket that has to be the most bereft of foreign policy experience in decades. Even Democrats, including the Obama/Biden ticket four years ago, didn’t lack this much in foreign policy as the Romney/Ryan ticket does. They can’t build those people up, so they are doing what they always do, do everything possible to tear down the Democratic candidates.

  • ArrogantDemon

    Because when it’s their major fuckups, they don’t want to be judge or take responsibility, when its a democrat, especially when it’s Obama, who takes responsibility, its not enough, they want blood.

    Most of all, they’re the biggest hypocrites ever, with no sense of introspection

    • missliberties

      They are telling lies to get people out to vote. This riles up the Christian base that is so important to their GOTV efforts.

    • bphoon

      …with no sense of introspection

      Or irony, for that matter.