The ugly truth is that the same people who are accusing the administration of not providing sufficient security for the American consulate in Benghazi have voted to cut the State Department budget, which includes financing for diplomatic security. The most self-righteous critics don’t seem to get the hypocrisy, or maybe they do and figure that if they hurl enough doubts and complaints at the administration, they will deflect attention from their own poor judgments on the State Department’s needs.
The New York Times really should have paid attention to the House hearing on Benghazi last Wednesday. If it had, the Times would have learned that State itself did not consider any budget cut votes to have had any impact on the assault.
Wait — someone at the Times did pay attention to that hearing. They even acknowledge that security requests from Benghazi were turned down by State officials in Washington. That story then presents the State officials’ take on why they denied the security requests, without mentioning that Assistant Secretary of State Charlene Lamb acknowledged that budgetary concerns played no part in her decision to deny request after request.
The editorial pays some lip service to the cover-up that followed the attack, but check out its URL:
“Republicans have no shame.” Nice balanced URL ya got there.
Late in the editorial the Times gives Vice President Biden’s view — “We didn’t know they wanted more security” — without acknowledging the spin and walkback the White House put on that last week, hanging Secretary of State Clinton out on her own.
The editorial ends with this howler:
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has appointed a panel of outside experts to investigate. More spending on security improvements will certainly help, but there will still be threats and risks. America’s diplomats must be protected, but they cannot do their jobs and interact with the world if they operate only behind fortress walls. There will always have to be a balance. Ambassador Stevens knew that.
We don’t know what Ambassador Stevens knew. He requested more security, was denied, he authored a memo outlining the growing security challenges in Benghazi, and is now dead. Hillary Clinton is an expert at playing out a scandal string longer than should be humanly possible. Secretary of State Clinton’s “outside experts” will not report to the American people before the election. As the Times knows, the FBI itself could not even access the sacked compound until three weeks after the attack, finding a compound that by then had been contaminated. The “outside experts” are an exercise in using the veneer of action to kick the can past Nov. 6.
Why doesn’t the Times note any of that?
Because it shamelessly doesn’t want to.