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Benghazi-gate
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2644

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Once again, a put down by someone who does not have command of the facts. Security of the perimeter of US embassies is technically the responsibility of the host country. The US government never relies on that. We provide our own security through the Bureau of Diplomatic Security and the Marines Embassy Guard. Go to any Embassy around the world and see who is standing at the door. It will not be the local security forces.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5207

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 11:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A nit is picked, with no acknowledgment of the overall analysis. Gotta love it. So persuasive.
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The responsibility for the protection of US citizens at diplomatic missions around the world is at the heart of this matter. The US properly takes direct responsibility for that protection, but, in this case, we failed. A nit to some perhaps, not to those who died or their loved ones.......or to those of us whose own children are periodically relying on that protection in hostile areas.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now the high road:

Quote:
The responsibility for the protection of US citizens at diplomatic missions around the world is at the heart of this matter. The US properly takes direct responsibility for that protection, but, in this case, we failed.


Since a mastery of policy and history seems well within your grasp, perhaps you can find a Republican who proposed increasing the budgets for security at diplomatic missions in the more dangerous places in the world? Or perhaps similar concerns expressed by Republicans after just one of the multiple attacks on missions during the Bush administration? I'm sure that we are all looking for solutions and not just finger pointing.
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feuser



Joined: 29 Oct 2002
Posts: 1395

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mrgybe wrote:
Once again, a put down by someone who does not have command of the facts. Security of the perimeter of US embassies is technically the responsibility of the host country. The US government never relies on that. We provide our own security through the Bureau of Diplomatic Security and the Marines Embassy Guard. Go to any Embassy around the world and see who is standing at the door. It will not be the local security forces.


If that was your attempt at a put-down, why not pick something you disagree with me about?

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florian - ny22

http://www.windsurfing.kasail.com/
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bard stated that we have a duty to protect US citizens at our embassies. You responded that the protection of those individuals is the duty of the host nation. You are wrong. Making that assertion deflects criticism of the State Department and thus excuses the weak, and ever changing stories coming from that department. Without clearly understanding what happened and who messed up, we are doomed to repeat the same mistakes. I have a personal interest in ensuring that doesn't happen. Disagreeing with the facts is not a put-down. Demeaning Bards's intelligence is.

Since I have your attention........remember when you said there would be no political consequences resulting from the Gosnell case? You were wrong about that too.
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swchandler



Joined: 08 Nov 1993
Posts: 5816

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's interesting how some folks view our physical involvement in other nations and their business, particularly those who boldly support American Exceptionalism. In my view, Florian is right about Benghazi and the mixing of diplomatic and intelligence operations. As many times as Ambassador Stephens apparently requested added defensive police/military support, I'm thinking why in the hell continue to hang out and put yourself at risk and in harms way. In the end, it doesn't surprise me that he and others paid the ultimate price for their activities in a very dangerous and inherently unstable place.

As sad as it is that four Americans died in Libya, what disturbs me more is the call from the right signaling expansion of a much bigger cause for aggression and death. Characters like isobars, perfectly represent an off-the-top interest in military aggression in the world and an untoward expansion of American Exceptionalism. Moreover, calls from Republican folks like Bard and NW30 echoing calls to promote an atmosphere of scandal about what happened in Benghazi signals a wanton pattern of hate dished up to discredit the current administration. I can only hope that that these shrill voices fall on deaf ears. The last thing that we need to do as a nation is promote a policy of war and strife in the world. Needless to say, I hope that saner minds prevail over time.
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mac



Joined: 07 Mar 1999
Posts: 5207

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 3:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is simple to say that every time an American dies, in a war zone, a terrorist attack on a bar, or an attack on an embassy we have failed. Figuring out what might improve things is, of course, a little harder. It entails the same level of taking responsibility that the right is fond of talking about--and avoiding.

Let's look at the facts--which are very inconvenient to the righties narrative. What did the security people in Libya think was necessary to provide for safety? Nordstrom asked for three additional security guards--and was turned down within the Department of State stovepipe. He said afterwards, in testimony to Congress that I have posted here, that three additional security guards would not have mattered, and the attack was beyond anything that he had anticipated.

It is unclear whether military support would have mattered, but it does seem that Stephens turned such support down:

Quote:
CAIRO — In the month before attackers stormed U.S. facilities in Benghazi and killed four Americans, U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens twice turned down offers of security assistance made by the senior U.S. military official in the region in response to concerns that Stevens had raised in a still secret memorandum, two government officials told McClatchy.

Why Stevens, who died of smoke inhalation in the first of two attacks that took place late Sept. 11 and early Sept. 12, 2012, would turn down the offers remains unclear. The deteriorating security situation in Benghazi had been the subject of a meeting that embassy officials held Aug. 15, where they concluded they could not defend the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi. The next day, the embassy drafted a cable outlining the dire circumstances and saying it would spell out what it needed in a separate cable.

“In light of the uncertain security environment, US Mission Benghazi will submit specific requests to US Embassy Tripoli for additional physical security upgrades and staffing needs by separate cover,” said the cable, which was first reported by Fox News.

Read more here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/05/14/191235/amb-stevens-twice-said-no-to-military.html#storylink=cpy


I raised this line of reasoning, and the question about Republicans response to security, because there is a vast world view difference between conservatives and moderates about how to project American power successfully in the world. There are now nearly 1000 military bases throughout the world, with perhaps 250,000 military personnel. Traditionally Republicans have responded to every "failure" to keep military personnel safe with spending more money on the military, while Democrats have suggested that additional diplomatic efforts might be required. Certainly this stems to some degree from world view--but with the military budget about $700 billion, and the Department of State's budget about $12 billion, another possibility comes to mind. Keeping contracts flowing to the military generates far more campaign contributions, mostly to Republicans, than worrying about security at the much smaller number of diplomatic installations.

Oh, but that has changed with the new Republicans from the Tea Party, hasn't it? Not if Senate Republicans prevail with their approach in the immigration bill:


Quote:
Keenan Steiner and Peter Olsen-Phillips, Sunlight Foundation

Posted: Saturday, July 6, 2013, 9:43 AM

A Washington Post report about the goodies for defense contractors in the the immigration bill that the Senate passed last week sent us digging through some of our favorite databases for clues. Just what inspired the lawmakers to make the unusual move of explicitly designating the expensive equipment the government should buy with the $4.5 billion the bill authorizes for beefed up border security.

The bill’s unusually specific language means four defense contractors will not have to deal with the uncertainties associated with the standard bidding process for federal contracts. While it won't be known until late July if these companies will report lobbying on the Senate bill (that's when their quarterly lobbying reports are due), Influence Explorer data reveals that all are serious players on K Street and major contributors of campaign cash. Here's the lowdown.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/news/nation_world/Immigration_bill_loaded_with_goodies_for_defense_contractors.html#GsH0uF50gFFREzvu.99


No bid contract goodies in there for Northrop Grumann, United Technologies, Textron (think Bell helicopters) and EADS North America. If I were only a little more cynical, I might ask how many of these contractors are based in Virginia--or in the portfolio's of our fervid conservatives. But I will leave that for others.

In my opinion, the sad truth about the conservative approach that sees America projecting its power with military might rather than economic might and inspiration, is that it doesn't work. The lessons of Vietnam and of Iraq are largely lost on both the military and the right. In both Afghanistan and Iraq, we have been bogged down in a difficult war of attrition, as we were in Vietnam. Yet even with the lessons of three of our past wars that showed the limitations of the strongest military in the world, we continue to project military power as our first option and the one with the most resources.

If someone on the right can come up with a single thing that the Republican party has done to help security in the embassies in those difficult countries, I would be happy to hear it.
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feuser



Joined: 29 Oct 2002
Posts: 1395

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mrgybe wrote:
Bard stated that we have a duty to protect US citizens at our embassies. You responded that the protection of those individuals is the duty of the host nation. You are wrong. Making that assertion deflects criticism of the State Department and thus excuses the weak, and ever changing stories coming from that department. Without clearly understanding what happened and who messed up, we are doomed to repeat the same mistakes. I have a personal interest in ensuring that doesn't happen. Disagreeing with the facts is not a put-down. Demeaning Bards's intelligence is.

Since I have your attention........remember when you said there would be no political consequences resulting from the Gosnell case? You were wrong about that too.


My point hasn't penetrated your bulwark of pre-formed opinions one inch. Go re-read what Bard and I wrote in response or google Vienna Convention. Or don't, but do not attempt to lecture me.

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florian - ny22

http://www.windsurfing.kasail.com/
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mrgybe



Joined: 01 Jul 2008
Posts: 2644

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is it just attempted lectures that are banned?
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