Friday, January 17, 2014

The Benghazi report

By Mustang Bobby

The Senate Intelligence Committee released their report on the attack on Benghazi. They criticized everyone, including the State Department, the CIA, and the Defense Department, basically saying that Libya was a post-revolutionary mess.

The Republicans are seizing on the conclusion that the attacks were “preventable,” crowing over this as if this seals the end of Hillary Clinton’s hopes for the White House in 2016 because she was the Secretary of State at the time.

I’m no military strategist or anything of the sort, but haven’t we all learned that just about every surprise attack in the history of modern warfare was “preventable”? Didn’t we have clues to the Japanese intentions on Pearl Harbor in 1941, or the Vietcong’s plans for Tet in 1968? Oh, and what about the memo to President Bush in August 2001 that noted “bin Laden determined to strike within U.S.”? Yes, hindsight is great if you’re focusing on someone else’s hind end.

I’m not trying to pull a Benghazi deflection on the Benghazi report; if the attack was preventable and people didn’t do their jobs, then they should be held accountable. And as Bryan at Why Now? points out, there’s also the role that Congress played in not providing adequate funding for the security at the embassy. But then since this report came from the Senate, they are, by necessity, blameless in all of this.

This report will now, as Charlie Pierce notes, deteriorate into a political skunk fight between the bug-eyed on the right (Gohmert, Bachmann, and Steve King), and the infantile obsession the Villagers have for the freak show that heralds a presidential campaign. And none of that is preventable.

(Cross-posted at Bark Bark Woof Woof.)

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