Earlier today, after seeing pictures of U.S. Ambassador to Libya J. Christopher Stevens' dead body being carried through the streets of Benghazi, I expressed my disgust with the current administration's response and very strongly condemned the President for his lack of leadership during this tragic time for our country. While I do not apologize for my positions, I admit that due to their brevity they did not appropriately convey my feelings on the matter. If any apology is owed to anyone, it is to the families of those affected by these heinous acts, who had their loved ones ripped away from them by an angry mob. I will now take the opportunity to extrapolate on my opinion.
Yesterday, at some point, an angry mob assembled outside of the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, Egypt angry over some amateurish video made by an American citizen which insults the leader of the Islamic faith. In response to this mob, the U.S. Embassy in Cairo released this statement:
"The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims – as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. Today, the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Americans are honoring our patriots and those who serve our nation as the fitting response to the enemies of democracy. Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.”
There are those that say this is tantamount to an apology by U.S. Administration officials, released to appease the gathering mobs around the Embassy in Cairo. I agree. I cannot confirm, but have been told by reliable sources, that the Embassy again stood firm by its previous statement once Americans across the country expressed outrage at the apology. To be fair, these words did not come out of the President's mouth. However, it remained the official position of the U.S. Government for some time, and neither the President nor the State Department repudiated these remarks until much later, after the violence had already gotten well out of hand.
To understand the damage caused by such an act of appeasement, one has to look no further than twelve years ago. In late 2000, just prior to President Clinton leaving office, Islamic extremists attacked the U.S.S. Cole, an American warship which was docked in Yemen, a country in the Middle East. Despite this unmistakable act of war, President Clinton did nothing. When President George W. Bush took office in early 2001, again no action was taken in response to the attack upon the U.S.S. Cole which killed 17 American service men and women, and wounded 39 other Americans. Shortly after the attack, al Qaeda publicly acknowledged responsibility for this attack. To this date, no one has ever been held responsible for this attack nor the murder of our brothers and sisters. At some point, a judge did freeze some assets of Sudan and the U.S. received some $13 million dollars from those assets. So we made Sudan pay for the ship, but we never had justice for the unnecessary loss of life.
This non-response was seen as weakness on the part of the United States by the terrorists that would see our friends and family dead. That this emboldened those same terrorists in their future designs is indisputable. So much so, that just shy of one year later, over 3,000 Americans fell further victims to this horrible perversion of the Islamic faith. Which brings me back to yesterday, the eleven year anniversary of one of the darkest days in our nation's history.
This apology for the actions of someone else, who is not associated with the U.S. Government, emboldened the angry mob outside of our Embassy in Cairo. Meanwhile, another angry mob formed outside of the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Armed with crude homemade bombs and rocket propelled grenades, our embassies came under attack. Meanwhile, our President remained silent.
Rather than redirecting American assets in the region to provide reinforcement and protection to the heroic men and women who risk their lives to perform a service to their country, the President decided to leave their fate in the hands of a handful a U.S. Marines and the security forces of both Libya and Egypt. While the protestors in Egypt continued their attack upon our Embassy, Egyptian security forces were seen standing by while protestors scaled the walls, ripped down and burned the U.S. flag and replaced it with a banner widely recognized as a symbol of Islamic jihad.
Meanwhile, the angry mob in Libya also began to compromise the security of our U.S. Consulate there. At least one U.S. State Department employee was murdered during this initial attack. In response, many of those inside were transported to a supposed “safe house” nearby to wait out the violence. It has been reported that members of the Libyan security force, who were aware of the location of the “safe house,” were seen pointing out the location to members of the mob. The “safe house” then came under attack, with the members of the angry mob storming the house. In the melee, Ambassador Stevens and two others were murdered by that mob.
There are pictures circulating which shows the limp, dead body of Ambassador Stevens being carried through the streets of Benghazi with at least one purportedly showing Libyans citizens attempting to carry the Ambassador to a hospital. The only thing clear about these images is that Ambassador Stevens was already dead. At any rate, this is not the first instance of a dead American being paraded through the streets of an Islamic country who's citizens had killed him in vengeance for American beliefs and values.
There are now rumors circulating that this was no spontaneous act of violence, that it was a planned attack upon the United States by her enemies which was designed to occur on the anniversary of that fateful day in 2001. I tend to believe this. Despite these rumors, no one can dispute that it was apparent that this was a very dangerous situation early yesterday. That our President took little or no action to protect these people, who served our country and were attacked on American soil, is an outrage. It is despicable that instead of focusing his full attention upon the attacks, our President was campaigning for re-election.
His non-response was seen as an act of cowardice, not only by his opponents at home, but also by our common enemies abroad. This emboldened the angry mob to grow and become progressively more violent. The key point that I wish for you to take from this is that these people, our brothers and sisters, did not have to die. Had our President responded with more resolution and conviction, these atrocities could have been prevented. I hear we will be sending unmanned drones to Libya, presumably for protection of our assets there and as a deterrent to those that would incite further violence. Gee, wouldn't that have been a great idea yesterday before our Ambassador was murdered and his dead body paraded through the streets?
I worry what the future holds for us, now that the weakness of the current administration has been exposed? I pray that the suffering has reached its climax, but if the U.S.S. Cole is any indication, we have good reason to worry. There are those that would have you believe it all happened at once and there was nothing the President could do. This is absolutely false. These heinous acts occurred over the course of many hours and progressively got worse. Had our President acted immediately when the first State Department employee was murdered, the other three deaths could have been prevented. Our President has a sacred duty to protect those that serve our nation abroad. He has failed in that duty.
Our enemies do not respect weakness. They know only one language, force. They respect only strength. Unfortunately, our government displayed neither of these traits yesterday. Now, because of our government's internationally perceived weakness, we are all in danger of further attacks. When I saw those images of Ambassador Stevens, I wept for his family and my country. Now, we must pray for God's protection. We are going to need it. I fear our President will continue his policies of appeasement which will further put us all in danger.
I will repeat here my fervent prayers for our nation and those directly affected by these heinous acts:
May God bless the United States and the families of those innocent victims of this horrible tragedy. I pray that our leaders be granted the wisdom to take the appropriate action to secure our people and interests around the globe. I pray that He brings peace to the families affected and that they know their loved ones are not forgotten and are true American heroes. Amen, So mote it be.