Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Defenders of Benghazi Are All-Knowing, and Have the Military, and Every Little Detail, Figured Out

In response to Meghashyam Mali's Hill article on the Robert Gates defense of Obama's Benghazi response, claiming critics have a “cartoonish” view of U.S. military capabilities, leftists keep making a variant of this argument:
Nobody from the other bases could have gotten there in time to do anything.
Each attack was only about 20 minutes. And they were 7+ hours apart. Nobody from the other bases could have gotten there in time to do anything.
How do you — how does anybody (!) — know that?!?!

This is hindsight, pure'n'simple (and hardly accurate hindsight at that).

How about a building on fire? Do firefighters conduct an in-depth study before they send their men in?! Do they know precisely how long the fire will last or how long they have to save people inside?


you receive a call from Benghazi, what, 5 (10?) minutes after the attack has begun — How do you know, how does Obama know, how does Hillary know, how would Bush know, how would Cheney know, how does the special forces commander know, how do the Pentagon generals know, how does anybody know… how long the attack will last, and/or how long those poor souls in Libya will hold out?

Is it 20 minutes? Is it 7 hours? Is it 2 days? Is it a week? Is it ten days (the Alamo)? Is it 20 seconds?

The purpose of military, especially the special forces — any of their members would tell you (as well as Robert Gates) this — is to put themselves in harm's way when the call comes, and hit fast'n'hard — that's what they signed up for and that's what they train for.

Then we are told as follows:
And if we sent few more people and if we lost more lives due to that … if we sent another dozen or two people there against thousands, could we avoid the incident or we would have lost few more brave soldiers?
And it is conservatives who allegedly have a cartoonish view of the military?!

Yes, in typical Hollywood fashion, the bad guys, just because they are so bright and because they snarl so much, and because those evil genius' evil minds have everything so well planned out, they succeed in almost effortlessly wiping out an entire platoon, an entire company, of baby-faced teen-agers in uniform, as if the American soldiers were nigh-defenseless children…

When the call comes, 5 minutes after the attack — the military will tell you (as well as Monsieur Gates, or BHO, or either Clinton) — that is the exact moment that you start reacting! You send the choppers into the air, you send the planes towards the target (with — naturally — all options open, including the one to call the raid off as they approach the city when the Marines or what have you are — what? — within say 15 miles of their target).

Sorry, but the option to stay put, hundreds of miles from Benghazi, is indefensible.

Update: Reader Radegunda points out that two of the reasons given by the Obama defenders cancel each other out:
Here are two excuses that were given:
1. We couldn't go into an uncertain situation.
2. We would have gotten there too late to make a difference.
Those two lines are mutually exclusive.
And neither is plausible on its own.
Mike Dd adds:

Then why did over 700 retired Special Oprations servicemen send a letter to the congress requesting an investigation? These people are told a lot of things 'off the record' by their buddies still in the thick of it, they know what is going on....and they do not have a cartoonish few of the military.

Gates said: “To send some small number of special forces or other troops in without knowing what the environment is, without knowing what the threat is, without having any intelligence in terms of what is actually going on on the ground, I think, would have been very dangerous,”

There was a drone flying overhead for most of the attack...and when you don't know what is going on...you either send in a small recon force of a probing force. The assertion that they did not know what was going on during an ATTACK means that you do SOMETHING to find out what is going on, not sit and wait to see what is going to happen next. The sum of the difficulties with this incident is that there seems to have been a failure to take any action followed by the whole storyline about some utube video that has proven false.