By Barry Rubin
There is something terribly and tragically and importantly symbolic about the Benghazi attack that may be lost in the tidal wave of details about what happened on September 11, 2012, in an incident where four American officials were murdered in a terrorist attack. This point stands at the heart of everything that has happened in American society and intellectual life during the last decade.
--The misblaming, to coin a word, on the video showed terrorist groups that not only can they attack Americans but they can do so without fear of punishment or even of blame! As the House of Representatives' hearings show, the misattribution of responsibility also delayed the FBI's investigation, perhaps conclusively so.
--The standpoint that it is better to let Americans die than to risk offending certain groups. That might seem harsh but when it was decided not to send a rescue mission that was precisely what was happening.
--The perfect symbolism of the president of the United States going to sleep in the face of a crisis, the living embodiment of a 2008 election ad by his opponent about whether he would deal with a crisis that erupted at 3 AM.
--The perfect symbolism of the secretary of state being the one who did that ad and who said, "What difference does it make" regarding the attackers' motives.
--The fact that the cover-up seems to be involved with the administration's need to declare victory over al-Qaida. Not only is that claim untrue but the idea that if al-Qaida is defeated there is no more threat from revolutionary Islamism is the central bad theme of Administration Middle East policy.
- An attempt to retrieve advanced weapons previously provided to Libyan Islamist groups in the war against the Qadhafi dictatorship because they could be turned against America? Well, such weapons were turned against America that day. If so, the situation showed the bankruptcy of the pro-Islamist policy.
- An effort to funnel weapons to the Syrian rebels, in a policy likely to repeat the problems in Libya? If so, the situation showed the bankruptcy of the pro-Islamist policy.
- A policy of negotiating some kind of deals with extreme and anti-American Islamist terrorists? If so, the situation showed the bankruptcy of the pro-Islamist policy.
This article is published on PJMedia.
You can view the hearings here.