As President Barack Obama’s administration sent officials to give statements to media about the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya, an obscure film was the central focus in most of their statements. Did blaming that film lead to other attacks that might not have occurred if administration officials hadn’t rushed to judgment about the attack in Libya?
Was it the actual film that sparked the violence, or was it the repetitive messaging and publicity about the film that sparked violence after Libya?
Obama has steadfastly blamed the film no one really knew about until the attacks occurred in Egypt and Libya and, in subsequent days, on other U.S. interests around the world.
A significant attack 3 days later, on Camp Bastion in Afghanistan, has been downplayed. I’ve tried repeatedly to get media to acknowledge the attack and its significance.
One military analyst said the attack destroyed or put out of action “eight irreplaceable aircraft” and now, U.S. Marines at nearby Camp Freedom “are without effective fixed wing air support.”
The analyst didn’t stop there. He also said the attack was “arguably the worst day in USMC aviation history since Tet in 1968.”
Now the Taliban has released a new video. The video shows young men training for the attack, and they’re wearing uniforms similar to those worn by U.S. forces.
Hot Leak News, a new-media channel at YouTube, published the video with text including this excerpt:
Hours after the attack, the Taliban released a statement saying it had been in retaliation for an American-made anti-Islam film which has caused protest across the Muslim world.
Did we simply provide the Taliban a propaganda talking point by publicizing the film so broadly? This is important because numerous accounts of preexisting security concerns at the Consulate have come forth. Some government officials who aren’t appointees have called the attack a “terrorist attack” that was planned in advance.
Whatever the case, it’s my opinion the alleged Libya coverup isn’t unilateral.
We should be asking hard questions about Camp Bastion where two Marines, including the VMA-211 commanding officer, were killed. Nine other personnel were also wounded, including one contractor.
Were we unprepared for the attack on Camp Bastion despite the significance of the anniversary of 9/11 and the presence of Britain’s Prince Harry?
Congress is holding hearings on Wednesday about the attack in Libya. Questions about Camp Bastion should also be put forth, in the interest of saving American lives.
Meanwhile, it would have been more productive to spend taxpayer money on a robust defense of the First Amendment to the Constitution, with a stance reflecting resolve to not back down on the matter. Until we do that, terrorists will seize any excuse to launch attacks. It's what they do.
(Commentary by Kay B. Day/Oct. 9, 2012)
Related at The US Report