It is remarkable how laser focused people tend to be around Libya and Hillary Clinton. The focus is almost exclusively on the Benghazi attack which killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, Sean Smith, Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty.
The Benghazi attack which occurred on Sept 11, 2012, was a symptom of foreign policy failure; the actual cause of the policy failure happened a full year-and-a-half earlier in February 2011.
Part I Link – The Origin Of The Libyan Crisis
Part Two – An Administration Desperate To Catch Up
When Susan Rice skipped a Feb 25, 2011 emergency weekend U.N. Security Council meeting, the Obama administration was compromised in their ability to influence any real outcome in Libya.
Without the U.S. seated at the policy table the U.N. made two strategic resolutions/decisions which were brutally short-sighted.
The first mistake was a resolution banning the sale or transfer of arms or weaponry into Libya during the civil war. On it’s face the ban might sound like a generally good idea; however, in reality it was exceptionally self-defeating. After all, it banned all weapons from entering Libya, including weapons for the opposition – which most thought would be needed for the “rebels” to defend themselves.
The second mistake was criminal charges brought about by the ICC (International Criminal Court) against the Kaddaffi regime. Nothing tells a dictator to double down on his position like telling him you as soon as this is over we will lock you and your family up for life.
Essentially those charges filed by the ICC solidified the certainty that Kaddaffi would never compromise. He was drawn to a bold position that either he would win the civil war, or he would die trying. Losing the war would mean death or a life in prison – one of these was now certain. So what did Kaddaffi have to lose by fighting?
This Security Council resolution highlights the emotional short-sighted outcome of most U.N. determinations. However, historically the U.S. has tempered logic to the 6 nation table of stupidity. But not this time. This time, at the specific direction of President Obama and his policy team, the U.S. did not even participate.
However, while the White House may have been annoyingly quiet, Hillary Clinton certainly was not. This lack of synergy led to multiple instances where Clinton’s publically voiced opinion ran exactly opposite to the Obama administration’s position she was supposedly representing.
The international optic was a completely out of sync with the White House and State Department. Sometimes embarrassingly so.
The U.S. government came under fire today for chartering a rescue boat for Americans stuck in Libya that is too small to cope with the rough Mediterranean sea.
Hundreds of American citizens were finally set to depart Tripoli harbour aboard the Maria Dolores, a small passenger ferry chartered by the U.S., trapped there by rough seas.
At the same time larger Greek and Turkish vessels have transported thousands of their own citizens to safety, crossing the choppy water to mainland Europe. (link)
The State Department was struggling with multiple plates spinning simultaneously. Secretary Clinton was noticeably unprepared to handle the heavy lifting. From the botched messaging, to the failure to evacuate American citizens from Western Libya, we watched as it almost seemed President Obama was enjoying Hillary being overwhelmed.
While Hillary had been trying to fill the February void left by Obama’s silence, another key player was working policy structure behind the scenes.
One of Obama’s little known advisors named Samanta Power began to play a more important role.
Power is the wife of Regulatory Czar Cass Sunstein, in 2001 she was a foreign policy advisor to President Obama along with Denis McDonough and Tom Donilon.
However, Power increasingly held a sway when it came to Libya, and her influence was soon noted with the introduction of the “Responsibility to Protect” Doctrine, or as it became known R2P.
Essentially her approach was to frame the possibility of defeat upon the Libyan Rebels in a similar venue as the historical Rwanda genocide. The potential slaughter of the Libyan Benghazi uprising was framed around a need for Humanitarian Intervention.
Despite the U.N Security Council resolution banning weapon distribution into Libya, the broad outline of a reason for U.S. intervention became visible. NATO would arm the rebellion and NATO would take action to “protect” the Benghazi rebels as Kaddaffi’s army moved ever closer to their weakly held positions.
However, there was one big problem – WE HAD NO IDEA WHO THE REBELS WERE. The administration had no idea what the ideology behind the Benghazi Rebels actually was.
Some analysts believe the administration actually did know, but chose not to recognize the rebels affiliation with al-Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood and arm them anyway.
Others, namely CNN analysts, said there was no real way to identify the ideology and we were just going to have to take a chance on them.
Personally I think there is profoundly enough visible evidence to state the administration ‘had to know’.
Because there were hundreds of on-the-ground reports from the region which accurately identified individually very specific people within the rebels as radical islamists. There is no intellectually honest way to believe the administration did not know they were supporting al-Qaeda affiliates and the Muslim Brotherhood. The signs were just too obvious.
One of the first signs was the very first Kaddaffi politician who defected from the regime and joined the rebellion. Interior Justice Minister, Mustafa Abdel Jalil.
The compounding problem was the massive stockpiles of weapons that were at stake in the equation.
If Kaddaffi fell, decades of weapons built up in hundreds of warehouses were going to be up for grabs. Weapons that included surface-to-air missiles, MANPADS, shoulder fired stinger missiles and tons of mustard gas and WMD.
Kaddaffi had built up massive amounts of arms over a period of three decades as the worlds most notorious international terrorist.
…(to be continued)
In part 3 we will outline how Obama took us into an illegal war, who stole the missiles and where they went, and how Hillary’s specific action led to complete chaos in the region.