The Corner

Six Hundred Requests for Help

The conventional wisdom in the mainstream media today is that Hillary Clinton survived the Benghazi hearing and put the matter behind her. Predictable. After all, most of us expected that the media’s preferred narrative of the hearing had been written the day before, with phrases such as “no smoking gun,” “prepared and composed,” and “nothing new” peppered throughout. Of course, a few blank lines would be left in the draft to be filled in later with actual testimony. But the bulk of the text was preordained.

The conventional wisdom is wrong. Clinton was prepared and largely composed, but there were several new things and smoking guns revealed. Not that you’d ever know it from mainstream coverage. And Clinton’s supporters and the mainstream media (the same unbiased reporters who cheered Bernie Sanders’s attempt to drive a stake in her email scandal) will work furiously to make sure these matters are all considered “old news” and that we need to move on.” See Clinton Scandal Playbook, copyright 1991.

But the fact that State Department personnel in Libya made 600 pleas for more security that went unheeded will continue to bob to the surface throughout the presidential election campaign. Six hundred pleas that went unheeded while the Brits judged the place too dangerous and evacuated. Six hundred pleas at the same time the Red Cross closed up shop and scampered. Six hundred pleas when the country was devolving into a terrorist playpen with scores of bombings and assassinations throughout the immediate vicinity. Six hundred pleas in the lead-up to 9/11, 2012.

Not just one plea. Not three. Not even ten, as bad as that would’ve been. Six hundred.

And the pleas weren’t merely ignored. The security at the U.S. facility in Benghazi was actually reduced. Unsurprisingly, Clinton deflects responsibility to others. Again, see Clinton Scandal Playbook, pp. 124–127.

Six hundred. That figure is extraordinary. It’s astonishing. It’s despicable. And it will be repeated at least 600 times during the presidential election cycle. As it should be.

This administration can move heaven and earth for a Bowe Bergdahl. For Christopher Stevens, Sean Smith, Ty Woods, and Glen Doherty, not so much.

Even though we suspect we know the answer, it’s legitimate and essential to repeatedly ask, “Why?” Because mainstream reporters surely won’t. And Clinton has demonstrated she will continue to lie about the “Why?”—just as she did to the families of the fallen. Just as she did to protect President Obama in the run-up to the 2012 election. Just as she’s doing to protect herself in the run-up to 2016.

Six hundred pleas. How incompetent, indifferent, detached, and/or mendacious must one be to ignore them? What other pleas will she ignore as president? Lots more than 600, I’d wager. And whose pleas?

I’m sure you’ve got a pretty good idea.

Peter Kirsanow — Peter N. Kirsanow is an attorney and a member of the United States Commission on Civil Rights.

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