Home
In this issue
April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Feb. 11, 2013/ 1 Adar, 5773

Hillary and the ghosts of Benghazi

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | We may never know exactly what happened in Benghazi, Libya, the night Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed, but it’s becoming increasingly clear that our response was short of optimal.

Even today, there are far more questions than answers. Could Stevens have been saved? Was Washington doing all in its drone-loving power to intervene? And, finally, as now-retired Secretary of State Hillary Clinton fired back to congressional questioners during her recent appearance on Capitol Hill: What difference does it make?

Those words, uttered impatiently with just a soupcon of anger, came in response to Sen. Ron Johnson’s question about what the administration knew and when. Specifically, Johnson (R-Wis.) asked why the administration sent U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice to appear on Sunday talk shows with talking points that we now know were clearly incorrect.

Recall that Rice repeated the operative narrative that the attacks in Benghazi were caused by a spontaneous protest gone awry about an anti-Muhammad video. While there was such a protest at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, nothing of the sort happened in Benghazi. The attacks — two of them six hours apart — were a premeditated assault, now widely referred to as a “terrorist attack by an al-Qaeda affiliate,” which may or may not be confirmable. Isn’t every wannabe terrorist part of an al-Qaeda affiliate these days?

To the point, was the White House’s response deliberately misleading? Or was Rice merely regurgitating what she had been told, using the best available information?

Clinton’s huffy response during testimony that was otherwise measured and cool was likely intended to put a lid on this can of worms:

“With all due respect, the fact is we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest, or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided they’d they go kill some Americans? What difference, at this point, does it make?”

Well, it all makes quite a bit of difference, though inarguably less now than it might have just weeks before the November election. Clinton’s response was so loaded with explosive potential, it’s a mystery why no one on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee attempted to provide an answer. Apparently, Johnson and his Republican colleagues were so hornswoggled by Clinton’s irritation that no one wanted to volunteer.

Most important, obviously, is the possibility that those four American lives might have been saved. More prosaically, it is very possible that President Obama’s reelection might not have been assured had possible incompetence at the highest levels been highlighted sooner rather than . . . now.

Americans got a clearer picture of what transpired last Sept. 11 during testimony Thursday by retiring Defense Secretary Leon Panetta. Appearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Panetta said he personally delivered the news to Obama that the consulate in Benghazi was under attack during a 30-minute briefing that also included Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

The president said, “Do whatever you need to do to be able to protect our people there,” and that was that. He and Panetta didn’t speak again that night — and neither Dempsey nor Panetta spoke to Clinton at all.

Under questioning by Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), Panetta added that the president didn’t ask about military options or deploying assets. “He just left that up to us,” Panetta said.

As chief executive, Obama may have felt he delegated appropriately. Let the military handle it. But he is also the commander in chief. When our ambassador is being attacked, our country is being attacked. Should he have done more? Might he have made a call to Stevens or someone else on the ground? Obama didn’t hesitate to call Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke two days after she was attacked on-air by radio host Rush Limbaugh. As Fluke reported, the president “wanted to make sure that I was okay.”

Two days after would have been too late for Stevens, of course, but one is a real-war theater and the other is merely political. To each his own arena.

To Clinton’s query — conceding the unfair advantage of Monday-morning quarterbacking — it is just and necessary to fill in the holes left gaping in Benghazi. Ultimately, the real truth may be, as one current ambassador put it to me, “Bad things happen in bad places.”

Does it make any difference how or why four Americans were murdered in Libya? My guess is, Ambassador Stevens would say that it does.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Kathleen Parker can be reached by clicking here.

Kathleen Parker Archives

<

© 2013, WPWG

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles

Quantcast