You know the scandal is tightening when everyone enters denial mode. The CIA spokesman has said, “No one at any level in the CIA told anybody not to help those in need; claims to the contrary are simply inaccurate. ”
The White House is denying that Obama had anything to do with denying any requests for aid. “Neither the president nor anyone in the White House denied any requests for assistance in Benghazi,” National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor told Yahoo News by email.
A local reporter committed the unpardonable sin of asking His Highness about the denial of aid. Obama immediately went into the “We are still finding out what happened mode.” That’s also known as “I knew nothing” mode and it’s what you say when you want to claim that you never had anything to do with it.
This performance should be familiar from the Gary Condit press circuit.
Obama’s version of “I know nothing” is, “The minute I found out what was happening, I gave three very clear directives. Number one, make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to.” That sounds assertive, but it’s actually fairly ambiguous. On paper, the ground level evacuation was covered by securing and whatever we need to do.
Former Assistant Defense Secretary Bing West has pointed out that if Obama had given an order then there would be a paper trail. But we know how much issues the most transparent administration since Kaiser Wilhelm has giving up information.
The specific question that Obama is avoiding is who gave the order not to send in a gunship.
Defense Secretary Panetta and General Dempsey have so far taken “credit” for denying aid claiming that they didn’t have enough intel to put people on the ground. But as has already been indicated, there were already gunships there and either moving in or ready to move in.
Blackfive quotes a retired Delta operator as follows;
The security officer had a laser on the target that was firing and repeatedly requested back-up support from a Specter gunship, which is commonly used by U.S. Special Operations forces to provide support to Special Operations teams on the ground involved in intense firefights. The fighting at the CIA annex went on for more than four hours — enough time for any planes based in Sigonella Air base, just 480 miles away, to arrive. Fox News has also learned that two separate Tier One Special operations forces were told to wait, among them Delta Force operators.
Having spent a good bit of time nursing a GLD (ground Laser Designator) in several garden spots around the world, something from the report jumped out at me.
One of the former SEALs was actively painting the target. That means that Specter WAS ON STATION! Probably an AC130U. A ground laser designator is not a briefing pointer laser. You do not “paint” a target until the weapons system/designator is synched; which means that the AC130 was on station.
Only two places could have called off the attack at that point; the WH situation command (based on POTUS direction) or AFRICOM commander based on information directly from the target area.
If the AC130 never left Sigonella (as Penetta says) that means that the Predator that was filming the whole thing was armed.
If that SEAL was actively “painting” a target; something was on station to engage! And the decision to stand down goes directly to POTUS!
So we go right back to Obama. And let’s parse those denials, and remember that we are dealing with people who have creative definitions of “it” and “sex”. They certainly have creative definitions of denials of assistance. They could have provided some assistance by calling in to the Libyan government for support while refusing armed intervention. If they choose to define armed intervention as not being assistance, but something else, then their denials stand.
From here we go to the Rush Limbaugh interview with a retired Special Forces Lieutenant Colonel and Special Operations planner via Right Scoop.
Here’s the important part
So no one in the White House can deny that — well, they can deny it, but the fact is the protocol says someone marched their happy little ass up to the senior guy standing next to POTUS and said, “Sir, ambassador in Libya is in peril.” And if he was missing, that is even a higher precedence. And then the chain would have also gone out automatically to the geographic combatant commander, AFRICOM, and he would have then turned to his special operations commander and said, “I want the In-Extremis Force, you know, strip ready in five minutes.” And evidently they were strip ready in Sigonella and they would have the assets to penetrate the airspace, you know, an MC-130 papa, which is a C-130 specially equipped with electronic countermeasures. They didn’t need permission to enter Libyan airspace, okay?
I’m giving you a lot of Inside Baseball stuff, and maybe putting myself in a little peril by doing it, but the In-Extremis Force, they would have been chomping at the bit to do this. It was turned down, POTUS, at his five p.m. Eastern time meeting with the principals, that’s when he put the kibosh on everything. It was a conscious act. It has to be because, you know, the In-Extremis Force is required to be prepared to do In-Extremis non-combatant evacuation operations for its geographic responsibility, the entire continent of Africa. So there’s always somebody ready to go, and the aircraft are always prepared to go.
Everyone is giving very formal denials and redirecting the question into investigation territory. But if indeed a rescue was underway and was shut down, then that is the question that needs to be asked as directly as possible.
Panetta and Dempsey and Ham have taken part of the fall. Panetta knows that a big part of his job is the willingness to take responsibility for his boss’ actions. But his denial has to do with a lack of intel and the intel wasn’t lacking. That was never the issue. It was the politics and the optics of it.
Obama wanted the locals to deal with it. Anything else would ruin the image of the Arab Spring and our Islamist allies. And so the locals dealt with it. And four Americans died.