According to President Obama’s narrative, the murder of four Americans in Libya is a story of “senseless violence” provoked by an anti-Islam video. According to his Praetorian Guards in the media, the story is how Mitt Romney rudely criticized Obama’s foreign policy.
Here’s the real story: The murder of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others is the most important terrorist attack on American civilians since 9/11. And it happened on the 11th anniversary of that day of infamy, on Obama’s watch.
There were no Marines on guard, and there are reports that the Benghazi embassy had been warned of an Al Qaeda assault, yet there were no precautions. It is likely the organized attackers, some carrying rocket-propelled grenades, had inside information about a “safe house,” where they killed two of the Americans.
Obama, after offering condolences and vowing to find those responsible, flew off to a campaign event in Vegas.
If that were all, it would be reason enough to doubt his competency and character. But it’s not all.
The crisis, including riots at our embassies in 20 countries, is the full flowering of a policy predicated on appeasement and apology. To borrow a phrase, the Obama chickens are coming home to roost.
The essence of his doomed approach is revealed in Obama’s refusal to meet with the prime minister of Israel while finding time to meet with the Muslim Brotherhood president of Egypt. The choice raises a fundamental question: Whose side are you on, Mr. President?
To ask is to concede despair. Starting with his Cairo speech in 2009, Obama promised a “new beginning” in our relations with Muslims. Had the comment been a marketing tool for a new administration, it would have been understandable. But the speech was far from benign. It foretold the ruinous path he would follow.
In Cairo, Obama insisted that, after 9/11, America “acted contrary to our ideals,” by using torture — a libel against his own country and the warriors who defend it. Under the Obama “ideals,” we follow a “kill or release” protocol, blasting terrorist leaders with drones while freeing all others without interrogation. So death is now more humane than waterboarding.
He suggested in Cairo that Americans harbor bigotry against Muslims, saying, “We cannot disguise hostility towards any religion behind the pretense of liberalism.” That, too, was a slander, and the policy corollary is that he says nothing about the slaughter of Christians in Arab lands.
He misstated Mideast history to draw a moral equivalency between Israelis and Palestinians. His portrayal of a “humanitarian crisis” in Gaza was spun of whole cloth, as was his claim that Israeli settlement activity “violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace.” As a result, there have been no direct negotiations during his term.
On Iran, he talked as if the mad mullahs and the US are equally responsible for the 30-year rupture, even though Iran was at that moment helping to kill our soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. He said, “No single nation should pick and choose which nations hold nuclear weapons,” a tip-off to his feckless policy.
The central idea of that speech is that America and Israel are largely to blame for radical Islam. The same instinct drips from the statement issued by Obama’s Cairo representative last Tuesday.
Utterly craven, the statement “condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims — as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions . . . we firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others.”
Deciphering the childish gibberish leads to the conclusion that free speech is OK only until Muslim feelings are hurt. Then we surrender our values to the mob.
In its cockeyed defense, the White House offered conflicting claims: one, that the statement came before the riots began; two, that we should, Obama said, “cut folks a little bit of slack” when they fear for their lives.
Let’s see — there was no riot, but they feared for their lives?
In fact, the embassy reaffirmed the apology twice while the riots raged.
After the statement was online for nearly 10 hours, Mitt Romney called it disgraceful and the White House quickly disavowed it. Until then, the apology for free speech was the sole response from the White House to the day’s events.
And why not? It is perfectly consistent with the last four years.
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Michael Goodwin is a Fox News contributor and New York Post columnist.