Thursday, December 20, 2012

Benghazi Buck Whizzes Past Barack and Hillary...

...and settles on four poor schlubs at the State Department.

First, the State Department Review Board comes out with it's report identifying poor practices at the State Department which led to the poor security and the tragedy at the consulate in Benghazi but fails to identify anybody specific to blame:

Review board raps State Department for poor security in Benghazi
Tuesday, December 18, 2012: The mandatory State Department internal inquiry into the deadly Sept. 11 terror attack on a U.S. diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya, slams bureaucrats for “grossly inadequate” security but says that poor leadership could not be punished under department regulations...

However, the board adds that “findings of unsatisfactory leadership performance by senior officials” in relation to security “should be a potential basis for discipline recommendations” in the future, and recommends changes to department regulations that would make that possible.

The report does not name any of the officials concerned, but an investigation by House Republicans found that Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Charlene Lamb, responsible for diplomatic security in the region, denied repeated requests for additional security in Libya from security officials on the ground.
Then, the next day, four lower level State Department officials dutifully stepped forward to fall their swords:
The senior State Department staffers who resigned included Eric Boswell, the assistant secretary for diplomatic security; Charlene Lamb, a deputy assistant secretary responsible for embassy security; and another unnamed person in the diplomatic security bureau, officials said. Raymond Maxwell, a deputy assistant secretary who oversaw Libya, Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, was identified by the Associated Press as the fourth official to resign.

They were held responsible for failing to act on requests for more guards and better fortifications for the U.S. compound in Benghazi, a city overrun by armed militiamen.

The resignations were a rare step for the State Department and an indication of how seriously top officials consider the lapses, veteran U.S. diplomats said.
Do I necessarily believe the Hillary and/or Barack had anything to do with the poor security practices that led to the massacre?  While I doubt that they had anything directly to do with denying any requests for security, I find it likely that they set a tone where embassies in Muslim countries were supposed to small foot print  outposts with low confrontation potential, and that this filtered down to the layers below them, and resulted in the denial of additional security.

This may explain why Hillary has a headache and can't testify in front of Congress until the furor dies down.

Based on my recent experience with someone fainting in public, I doubt it could occur without the victim being taken to a hospital for at least a cursory medical work up, especially a Secretary of State

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