There was stunning testimony last week at the Senate Armed Forces Committee meeting regarding the attack on our consulate in Benghazi, Libya. It revealed the lack of leadership by President Obama — or rather the abandonment of his duty during the attack.
Testimony revealed that the attack started at 4:32 p.m. Washington time, just 28 minutes before President Obama was already scheduled to meet with Secretary of Defense Panetta and General Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs.
Panetta stated that they discussed the evolving attack for 20 minutes and the president left the situation “to us.” They described the president as being absent from the process and there was no statement made by the president or the White House until after the attack was over some eight hours later.
When asked, “Did the president ever call you that night to say how are things going?” Panetta said “no.”
When asked, “No one else called you to say ‘How’s it going?’ Panetta said “no.”
Panetta and Dempsey stated they stayed up all night to address the crisis, but could not say whether the president stayed up. However, the president was rested enough to fly to Las Vegas early the next morning for a campaign event — further abandoning the continuing crisis that killed the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans and the need to secure the consulate for investigation purposes and retrieve the bodies.
The designation “Commander and Chief” has meaning. It means that in a time of crisis, the president is the take command of the situation.
On the evening of Sept. 11, 2012, our ambassador and the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi were under attack by armed terrorist. Every country in the world considers an attack on their ambassador as an attack on their home country. Such an attack is never callously disregarded as was done by the president of the United States. Our ambassador was being assassinated and President Obama appears to have gone to bed.
At best, the president’s performance was utterly incompetent. At worst, it was negligent as he was completely disengaged from his responsibilities as “Commander and Chief.” Had any military officer abandoned his post during a terrorist attack, he would have been relieved of duty, court martialed, and sent to prison!
Gary P. Morris