The Benghazi Debacle

I wrote the below in response to a post (and subsequent comments) written by former CIA Officer, Nada Bakos.  I generally agree with her on this issue because I don’t think the CIA had much, if any, situational awareness regarding the Benghazi attacks until several days after the fact.  It is a complicated story and I think the details of what really happened are going to shock people both Left, Right, and Center.  Currently, Brandon Webb and I are working on a book about the Benghazi Consulate attack.  It will take a deep historical look at Libya and North Africa as a whole before moving forward.  Remember the Barbary War, America’s first war on terror?  We will also get deep inside contemporary Libya and the history of Gaddafi’s terrorist attacks and American covert operations in Libya before moving on to the Civil War and the activity of Private Military Corporations inside the country.  Perhaps most importantly, the book will detail as closely as possible the minute by minute of what happened during the 9/11/12 Consulate attack and give readers some insight into the parties involved.  We hope to have the book done sometime this month, maybe early January so look for it here and on Amazon around that time.  For now, you can see my take on the media frenzy surrounding this incident:

I don’t know this for a fact, but I strongly believe that after the Consulate attack that the CIA and State Dept. honestly believed that it was the result of that Anti-Islam video on youtube.  I don’t think they could conceive of any other reason.  I heard this through the grapevine as well, that the video was to blame.  I knew this wasn’t true of course because of the nature of the attack.  It was obviously planned, almost like something the NVA would do when attacking a FOB in Vietnam.  However, the egg heads in our government (many of them anyway) couldn’t or wouldn’t make that connection.  Also, that is not a reason for the attack and without a reason they really don’t have any talking points to bring to the public.  You can imagine Obama giving a press conference, “Well, we got attacked.  It was deliberate and pre-planned, but we have no idea why it happened…”  Yeah, that wouldn’t go over well.

So they ran with it.  I was on the phone with a tv producer a day after the attack and she was asking me about these violent protests getting out of hand.  I told her there was no way it was just a protest, it was a planned raid.  I hung up the phone and a few hours later they were saying it was a planned attack in the main stream media.  In the days after the attack I think the CIA got some better situational awareness and started to realize what was going on.  I’ll tell you this much, General Petraeus had decided to resign not long after the attack, it was that bad.  Then someone helped him out the door, but not on his terms.

Meanwhile, the government had painted themselves into this narrative that the attack was about this anti-Islam video.  Since when does our government ever admit they made a mistake and that they were wrong?  No one was held accountable for 9/11/01 which was on America soil and was much more devastating.  I don’t like it, but it is unrealistic to expect that the Paragon of Truth that is the White House will reverse course, during an election cycle no less, and admit that they made mistakes.

Did the Consulate have shit security?  I’m sure.  But so do many US government installations, including military bases I’ve been on like Benning, Bragg, ect…  (I also spent time on FOB Chapman in Afghanistan where a suicide bomber killed seven CIA employees) where security would be extremely easy to penetrate.  This year a couple activists got right up to the walls of a uranium enrichment facility in Tennessee.  In the aftermath of a devastating attack, 20/20 hindsight will always lead us to say that there should have been more security.

However, security is not the issue here.  The administration bunging the PR piece about the youtube video is not the issue.  There are much more powerful forces at play here but everyone is too caught up in their partisan particularisms to see that.


Filed under News, Weapons and Tactics, Writing

2 responses to “The Benghazi Debacle

  1. Chris

    This gov’t will never admit they lied about this attack. Spineless and stupid. Can’t wait to see what you and Brandon write about it. No doubt, you’ll be spot on.

  2. 1. Looking forward to what you come up with.
    2. Will purchase your book.
    3. In my experience, these violent, unexpected incidents are followed by bunches of visiting fireman. Second guessing people who are facing extremely difficult situations is problematic.
    4. Usually the agenda involves covering some superior a level or two removed.
    5. As infantry, generally my superiors were pleased when situations didn’t spin into chaos and disaster.
    6. Have a few questions to throw into the mix.
    7. Apparently General Ham was relieved in Stuttgart after his number two back channeled DC that Ham was attempting some sort of relief or rescue of the Benghazi people. Against orders. What gives?
    8. Do US forces need CBA to enter Libya at this time?
    9. Story on arms shipments from Benghazi to Iskenderun, Turkey.
    10. Did the relief of RADM Gaouette have anything to do with this mess? Seems unlikely as the Stennis was not in position to effect events. Also, Gaouette assured a mutual friend that the business was stupid, if not inconsequential. Still, he was a player in some other recent events….
    11. Was one of the US buildings being used to interrogate AQ detainees?
    12. What was the size of the staff? Were they Government employees or contractors.
    13. Was the mission intelligence, weapons recovery and remediation, weapons recovery and transshipment? All of the above?
    14. An unexpected bonus Monday: was revealed that Susan Rice got in Samantha Powers’ bad books back in 1994. Rice, then a State Department flunkey, wondered aloud about the effect the Rwandan genocide would have on the upcoming congressional elections. Okay to think but not to speak aloud in those circles. Showed a predilection for dealing with political consequences that probably is reflected in recent actions.
    15. Anyway, lots of questions. No answers.
    16. Condolences on the loss of your friends. God speed them and comfort their families.
    V/R JWest

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