In 1983, Marxist unrest in the tiny Caribbean Island of Grenada threatened the safety of roughly 1,000 Americans residing there. Many of them were medical students at the island’s medical school. President Ronald Reagan did not hesitate. He dispatched 6,000 U.S. troops to evacuate the Americans and secure the island. Within a week, U.S. objectives were met. The Americans were safe, the Cuban mercenaries were expelled and rule of law was reestablished.
There was a time when being a U.S citizen held significance and carried weight, when two-bit dictators and petty thugs would think twice before harming Americans. In the age of Obama, that time remains but a distant, faded memory. Holding U.S. citizenship now is not only meaningless, it paints a broad target on one’s back. The Benghazi debacle serves to reinforce this view.
The brazen, preplanned September 11, 2012 terror attack against the American consulate in Benghazi needlessly cost the lives of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, the first U.S. ambassador killed in the line of duty since 1979. Obama’s State Department, run by his inept and malevolent secretary of state, is largely to blame. Indecisiveness, bureaucratic bungling and poor intelligence led to a series of mistakes that hampered relief efforts.
The extreme ineptitude demonstrated by the Obama-Clinton duo in protecting Americans during the Benghazi fiasco recently repeated itself in a disturbing incident eerily similar to events unfolding on that hot September night. On July 11, rampaging South Sudanese “soldiers” – savages would be a more appropriate term – attacked a sprawling hotel compound in the capital city of Juba inhabited by Western relief workers, journalists and South Sudanese elites. In the following 24 hours, the Westerners as well as some South Sudanese were forced to endure gang rape and torture. One South Sudanese journalist was shot dead while an American woman was raped by as many as 15 South Sudanese soldiers. Americans were singled out for particular cruelty.
Unbelievably, the carnage could have been prevented. There was a significant United Nations force staffed by Chinese, Ethiopian and Nepalese troops stationed nearby, just a few minutes’ drive away. Minutes after the South Sudanese soldiers forced their way into the Terrain Hotel complex; UN forces as well as the U.S. embassy in Juba were deluged with frantic calls for help. Emails, Facebook messages and texts were inexplicably ignored. One American who succeeded in escaping in the early stages of the assault made his way to the nearby UN compound but his pleas too fell on deaf ears.
UN forces in the area utterly failed to uphold their core mission to protect civilians. The incident at the Terrain Hotel can be added to a lengthy list of similar UN failures. In 1995 Dutch troops under UN command, stationed in the Bosnian city of Srebrenica, presided over the worst post-World War II massacre on European soil. They stood by as 7,000 people were systematically massacred by forces commanded by the Serb war criminal, Radko Mladic. Their culpability for their inaction was confirmed when a Dutch court found Holland civilly liable for at least three of those deaths.
On the Golan Heights, UN troops meant to serve as a buffer between Israeli and Syrian forces, shamefully unraveled at the first sight of Muslim militants approaching their positions during the ongoing Syrian civil war.
In 1957, the Israel Defense Forces withdrew from the Sinai Peninsula after seizing the area during the 1956 Suez war. Their withdrawal however, was conditioned on UN forces taking up strategic buffering positions in Sinai to deter future Egyptian aggression. In May 1967, those UN troops packed up and vacated after the Egyptians ordered them to do so thus precipitating the Six-Day War. There are dozens of additional examples too numerous to note in this piece detailing similar UN failings. These shortcomings are the rule rather than the exception when it comes to UN operations.
The UN said that the instant matter is currently under investigation. Needless to say, I do not have much faith in UN investigations.
The U.S. embassy too failed to adequately protect its citizens. A State Department spokeswoman said that the embassy “was not in a position to intervene.” Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations said that the embassy reached out to South Sudanese officials “who sent a response force to the site to stop the attack.”
Power’s statement is pure hogwash. The South Sudanese arrived some 24 hours later, when the violence had already subsided. In point of fact, the United States was aware of the extreme volatility in the region and had experienced problems in the past. In 2013 and then again 2014 Navy SEALS and Marines were dispatched to South Sudan to evacuate and protect U.S. citizens. And on July 12, just one day following the Terrain compound attack, 40 soldiers from the U.S. Marine Corps’ crisis-response force based out of Morón, Spain were dispatched to South Sudan in an effort to protect the U.S. embassy and American personnel. The salient question is why weren’t they deployed sooner?