The Benghazi Speech

I know the Prez is doing a press conference next Wednesday, but he really needs to do a speech about Benghazi.  It needs to be an air-tight, comprehensive speech that will stand up a month, six months, a year from now.  No drip, drip, drip.  He needs to explain exactly what happened, what went wrong, and what’s being done to fix it.  The White House should release documentation to supplement and back up the speech.

He will never have more good will from the American people than he has right now.

Having executed a brilliant campaign, I worry that his people will drift back into their first-term crappy communicating.

He needs to explain why the Africa Command (Africom), established in 2007 under Bush 43, was the only command not to have its own Commanders’ In-Extremis Force (CIF) and  had to rely on help from the European Command, which meant forces that were on a mission to Croatia.

As for the members of the GOP who have been critical of Benghazi, like John McCain and Lindsey Graham, they had to have known that Africom didn’t have a CIF.  I’ve heard John Bolton rant about a lot of things on Fox News — why wasn’t he complaining about this?

CIA in Libya: Eye on the Wrong Ball

From “Ansar al-Sharia’s Role in Benghazi Attacks Still a Mystery,” Eli Lake, The Daily Beast:

“One of the main participants in the Sept. 11 anniversary assault on the U. S. diplomatic mission and Central Intelligence Agency annex in Benghazi is a group formed earlier this year called Ansar al-Sharia, according to the current U. S. intelligence assessment of the attack.

“Before the attack, the U. S. intelligence community didn’t consider Ansar al-Sharia a threat to American interests, and the group wasn’t a priority target for the CIA officers monitoring jihadists in Libya, according to U. S. intelligence officials with knowledge of the investigations into the Benghazi attacks.

“Because Ansar al-Sharia wasn’t designated as a terrorist group or thought to have significant connections to al Qaeda, there were fewer resources deployed to monitor the organization’s members, these officials say.

“Some analysts in the intelligence community disagreed with the official assessment, however.   A public report released in August by the Library of Congress at the direction of a Pentagon organization that focuses on counter-terrorism research concluded that Ansar al-Sharia ‘increasingly embodied al Qaeda’s presence in Libya.’  But this wasn’t the prevailing view.

“One U. S. intelligence contractor working on the investigation into the Benghazi attacks said, ‘We were not focused on these guys.’

Another Bad Guy Gone

On the eve of the 11th anniversary of 9/11, the President isn’t just out there making patriotic speeches, he’s making us safer, protecting us from another day of horror.

The Defense Ministry in Yemen is reporting that Al Qaeda’s No. #2 leader there, Saeed al-Shihri, has been killed in a drone strike.  This is a major blow to the terrorists because Yemen is now Al Qaeda’s most significant hub.

As Joe Biden would say, this is a BFD.

We have an excellent commander in chief — we need to keep him.

What Pakistan Wants

Pakistan’s Parliament is debating what it wants from the U. S. to resume full diplomatic relations, including re-opening of NATO’s supply route to Afghanistan.  What’s Urdu for chutzpah?

They want us to pay to transport our supplies to Afghanistan.  Because, you know, that $20 billion we’ve given them since 9/11 just isn’t enough.

They want us to apologize for  a mistaken attack that killed 24 of their soldiers near the Afghan border last November, a mistake that was partly their fault.  Where’s their apology for hiding bin Laden all those years?

And the big one, the ain’t-gonna-happen one, is that they want us to end our drone strikes against Al Qaeda and the Taliban.  Nothing about their ending sanctuary for terrorists.  The drone strikes are one of the few smart, successful things we are doing in that part of the world.

Our response to this crap?  I think we should go with Richard Armitage’s approach, when he called then-President Musharraf after 9/11 and threatened to bomb Pakistan back to the Stone Age. (We can’t make that threat against Afghanistan, since they are already in the Stone Age).  We can’t be allied with Pakistan when they are providing safe haven and support to our enemies.  The friend of our enemy is our enemy too.