This is why Benghazi matters

Few bloggers have grasped foreign policy and the significance of world events like Richard Fernandez.

In his latest PJ Media piece, he lays out a brilliant argument that shows exactly why Benghazi is perhaps the most significant foreign policy event of the Obama presidency.  And it’s not something the Administration is proud of.

Fernandez notes that after Sept. 11, 2012, pretty much all of America’s foreign policy – our “Smart DiplomacyTM ” – is now in complete disarray: the “Arab Spring” in Libya and Egypt; the resurgence of al-Qaeda in Africa and the Middle East; Israel/Palestine negotiations; Iran; Syria; the Russia/Ukraine conflict.  This is his take:

“Suppose Benghazi was the night when the administration’s secret policy fell apart. In one devastating attack Obama — and Hillary — realized they had been double-crossed and their whole theory had been a dream. In an instant it was plain they could not control the jihad from the inside.

That setback, by itself, was not necessarily a bad thing. Commanders in chief can make mistakes so why couldn’t Hillary and Obama just admit they had this theory but it didn’t work in practice and just learn from it?

Because they had pursued the policy secretly and possibly illegally. Because of 2012. Because like Hirohito, Obama could do no wrong, so there was nothing but to protect the Throne of Heaven from the accusation of fallibility and the guilt of cover-up. So they lied.

… And now he’s living with the consequences of having to pursue a strategic assumption he knows is wrong but does not dare denounce.”

Hirohito, of course, was the Emperor of Japan during the Second World War.  After the disastrous battle of Midway, the Emperor ordered his military to never speak publicly about the battle.  He also ordered all news and propaganda agencies to report a victory over the American forces at Midway.  Emperor Hirohito may have been able to orchestrate a successful coverup of his nation’s embarrassing defeat, but his propagandists were ultimately powerless to hide the fact that Japan’s navy had been significantly crippled, and its original strategies for defeating the Americans were all but useless.  The Japanese people knew something had happened, because Japan never recovered its offensive momentum, and spent the rest of the war in retreat.

Is Benghazi the Obama Administration’s version of The Battle of Midway?  If the United States spends the next two and a half years on the run from Russia, al-Qaeda, and Iran, the world will be a much more unstable and dangerous place.  But Obama has already won his Nobel Peace Prize, and both he and Hillary Clinton have massive egos and political legacies to protect.  Sadly, this might be the number one policy objective for a lame duck Obama Administration.

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