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Fri Oct 23, 2015, 02:49 PM

 

IGNORING US Destabilization of Libya, GOP Benghazi Hearing Asks Clinton All the WRONG QUESTIONS


"..So, what we need to know is why Stevens was there in the first place, what the CIA was doing, and why there was no - virtually no security around the diplomatic facility, which was just a transitional facility, and because it was a TMF, it wasn't even eligible for an upgrade in security. It didn't come up on the radar screen. And to blame her for that is ridiculous. But to know what her position was on why military force was a good idea is important, particularly since she is going to be the Democratic candidate - she established that last week in the debate. And there's a very good chance she'll be occupying the White House for four to eight years in the near term..."






Former secretary of state and current Democratic hopeful Hillary Clinton underwent a marathon day of testimony Thursday before the House Select Committee probing the 2012 attack in Libya, which killed US Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans. Throughout the hearing, Clinton defended her record on Benghazi in the face of Republican criticism. Republicans say Clinton ignored pre-attack warnings and mishandled its aftermath, even though seven previous congressional probes have found no wrongdoing. Clinton handled Republican questions with a calm demeanor, and afterward panel chair Trey Gowdy, Republican congressmember of South Carolina, admitted the hearing failed to turn up anything new. Melvin Goodman, former CIA and State Department analyst, says the Benghazi hearing has ignored the real issue for Clinton to address: the US bombing of Libya that destabilized the country and set the stage for the fatal 2012 attack. "What was learned was irrelevant," Goodman says. "What was relevant, wasn't discussed."



~snip~


AMY GOODMAN: The Obama administration has been criticized for its handling of the aftermath of the Benghazi attack. The White House initially said the consulate was attacked by protesters denouncing a short American film insulting the Prophet Muhammad. But it later turned out the attack was carried out by well-armed militants. The militants first attacked the diplomatic mission, then a secret CIA annex. Republicans say Clinton ignored pre-attack warnings and mishandled its aftermath. While previous reports have been scathing over security failures and have led to firings at the State Department, none have accused Clinton or other top officials of wrongdoing.

Well, joining us for more is Melvin Goodman, former CIA and State Department analyst, senior fellow at the Center for International Policy and director of the Center's National Security Project. His latest book, National Insecurity: The Cost of American Militarism.

Welcome to Democracy Now!, Mel Goodman. Can you start off by talking about the significance of the hearing yesterday, what was learned, what wasn't learned, and what you think are the key questions to be asked that may have never been asked formally by any of these committees?

MELVIN GOODMAN: Thank you, Amy. What was learned was irrelevant. What was relevant wasn't discussed. And it was those areas that concern me. Why was the CIA operating a base out of Benghazi? Why was the State Department operating a transitional mission facility, a TMF - it wasn't a consulate - in Benghazi? Why was Ambassador Stevens, who was aware of the security situation, in Benghazi in the first place? So, none of these questions have been asked.

And remember, when the plane flew these survivors out of Benghazi to get them back to Tripoli, for every State Department official on that plane, there were five or six CIA employees. And my sources tell me that the CIA was there to buy back weapons that we had given to Gaddafi in the first place. So the question all of this begs - and this is where Hillary Clinton's remarks did concern me - is that we created a disaster in Libya. It was the decision to conduct regime change, the decision to go after Gaddafi, which eventually led to his death. And remember, Hillary Clinton welcomed that news with the words "We came, we saw, he died."

Now, there is a link to what Putin is doing in Syria, because, remember, we had to tell the Russians that we had very limited objectives, a very limited mission in Benghazi, so that they would not veto the UN resolution. And then, essentially, Putin finds out that our mission really was to go after Gaddafi, creating this instability, this discontinuity, this chaos in Libya.

So what really needs to be discussed is, what is the role of military power in the making of foreign policy? Why does Hillary Clinton think that Libya is not a disaster? And why was Hillary Clinton pushing for the military role in Libya in the first place? These are important issues.

As far as the hearings were concerned, she testified off and on for nearly 11 hours. She handled herself extremely well, and she essentially exposed the fact that these were a group of Republican troglodytes doing their best to marginalize her and humiliate her. And they totally failed.

AMY GOODMAN: Mel Goodman, the justification at the time, that Gaddafi was going to commit a massacre in Benghazi. Can you take us back to - again, it was September 11th - another September 11th - 2012. I think there is so little talked about, about what actually was happening there, that people don't realize exactly what the context was.

MELVIN GOODMAN: Well, in the wake of Gaddafi's death, there was total chaos in Libya. And essentially, there was a civil war being waged between forces in the western part of the country, based around the capital, Tripoli, and forces in the eastern part of the country, based around Benghazi. And what we have learned, essentially, over the last 34 years of foreign policymaking, that when you use military power in areas that are not stable, you usually create a worse situation. Israel invades Lebanon in 1982, and the creation of Hezbollah takes place. We arm the mujahideen in Afghanistan in the 1980s, and this leads to groups like the Haqqani faction, the Hekmatyar group, and even al-Qaeda. We go into Iraq, there's the Sunni Awakening. Now we're dealing with the Islamic State. So we took a very bad situation, where there was factionalism in Libya, and made it much worse by removing the only person who seemed to hold it together, even though he did it with incredible violence and threat, but Gaddafi was holding that nation, to the extent it was a nation, holding it together. So, we were a major force and a major reason for the instability that took place. We should never have been in Benghazi. All of the other international institutions, both government and nongovernment, had pulled out of Benghazi.




http://www.democracynow.org/2015/10/23/ignoring_us_destabilization_of_libya_gop

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Reply IGNORING US Destabilization of Libya, GOP Benghazi Hearing Asks Clinton All the WRONG QUESTIONS (Original post)
Segami Oct 2015 OP
Segami Oct 2015 #1
sabrina 1 Oct 2015 #14
Myrina Oct 2015 #2
Tierra_y_Libertad Oct 2015 #3
Segami Oct 2015 #4
riderinthestorm Oct 2015 #5
erronis Oct 2015 #13
JDPriestly Oct 2015 #16
kelliekat44 Oct 2015 #19
leveymg Oct 2015 #28
joshcryer Oct 2015 #33
KoKo Oct 2015 #6
JDPriestly Oct 2015 #20
Name removed Oct 2015 #7
dreamnightwind Oct 2015 #8
Thespian2 Oct 2015 #10
Marty McGraw Oct 2015 #11
valerief Oct 2015 #12
JDPriestly Oct 2015 #24
Thespian2 Oct 2015 #9
JaneyVee Oct 2015 #15
Uncle Joe Oct 2015 #18
Comrade Grumpy Oct 2015 #21
NuclearDem Oct 2015 #23
CJCRANE Oct 2015 #35
JDPriestly Oct 2015 #26
Uncle Joe Oct 2015 #17
reddread Oct 2015 #22
leveymg Oct 2015 #37
slipslidingaway Oct 2015 #25
slipslidingaway Oct 2015 #27
leveymg Oct 2015 #29
AgingAmerican Oct 2015 #30
leveymg Oct 2015 #36
Duppers Oct 2015 #31
Turbineguy Oct 2015 #32
heads up Oct 2015 #34

Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 03:01 PM

1. "...In 2012, then-Congressman Dennis Kucinich,

 

"....
a Democrat from Ohio, spoke at a House committee hearing a month after the attack on the U.S. Consulate and CIA annex in Benghazi. He stated, quote, "The security situation did not happen overnight because of a decision made by someone [at] the State Department." He went on to criticize U.S. policy in Libya.


REP. DENNIS KUCINICH: We owe it to the diplomatic corps, who serves our nation, to start at the beginning. And thatís what I shall do. The security threats in Libya, including the unchecked extremist groups who are armed to the teeth, exist because our nation spurred on a civil war, destroying the security and stability of Libya. And, you know, no one defends Gaddafi. Libya was not in a meltdown before the war. In 2003, Gaddafi reconciled with the community of nations by giving up his nationís pursuit of nuclear weapons. At the time, President Bush said Gaddafiís actions made our country and our world safer.

Now, during the Arab Spring, uprisings across the Middle East occurred, and Gaddafi made ludicrous threats against Benghazi. Based on those verbal threats, we intervenedóabsent constitutional authority, I might add. We bombed Libya. We destroyed their army. We obliterated their police stations. Lacking any civil authority, armed brigades control security. Al-Qaeda expanded its presence. Weapons are everywhere. Thousands of shoulder-to-air missiles are on the loose. Our military intervention led to greater instability in Libya.

Many of us, Democrats and Republicans alike, made that argument to try to stop the war. Itís not surprising, given the inflated threat and the grandiose expectations inherent in our nation building in Libya, that the State Department was not able to adequately protect our diplomats from this predictable threat. Itís not surprising, and itís also not acceptable. ...

We want to stop the attacks on our embassies? Letís stop trying to overthrow governments. This should not be a partisan issue. Letís avoid the hype. Letís look at the real situation here. Interventions do not make us safer. They do not protect our nations They are themselves a threat to America...."

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Response to Segami (Reply #1)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 05:57 PM

14. "our nation spurred on a civil war, destroying the security and stability of Libya."

Thanks, I wondered when we would get beyond the 'red team' 'blue team' euphoria, on both sides btw, you have to read the 'red team' sites also to see how irrelevant all this is.

Now let's have the hearings we SHOULD have. The illegal, inhumane invasions of nations that are no threat to this country, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Iran, so far avoided by this administration, but it will never be 'off the table' until we start arresting and prosecuting the war criminals who have caused so much disaster to human beings over the past 15 years.

Benghazi, just one of hundreds of thousands of tragedies we caused there.

I opposed it, many people opposed it. I see we were right by the results, which are horrendous.

What those hearings showed was that while they are vying for POLITICAL advantage, all of them are FOR Imperial wars.

I would have stayed tuned if they had asked about the entire awful decision to go there in the first place.

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 03:03 PM

2. K n R

n/t

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 03:09 PM

3. Yep. Lots of posturing, lots of bombast, lots of CYA but little of substance.

 

Little or nothing about the utter stupidity of involving the country in another idiotic middle east civil war.

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Response to Tierra_y_Libertad (Reply #3)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 03:16 PM

4. The clown panel of "Republican troglodytes"

 

"..totally failed.."


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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 03:23 PM

5. Benghazi was a covert CIA station with strong indications it was Petraeus' baby

 

Last edited Fri Oct 23, 2015, 05:00 PM - Edit history (1)

the Rethugs and Dems on that committee know that. There really are valid and important questions about Benghazi but those very real questions will never e answered.

So the entire premise of the hearing was a sham to start with, let alone having to get into the details of what we were doing there (funneling arms to Syrian "rebel" -cough- groups).

Just an unbelievable demonstration of how badly the Rethugs hate Hillary and how much time and $$ they're willing to waste on hating her.

K&R. Great OP

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #5)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 05:50 PM

13. No skin off their ('uglican) backs. They are already bought and paid for. It's the taxpayers

that foot the bill for all their obstruction.

And of course, that's exactly what they want - a dysfunctional government.

Well, functional enough to pay their cronies, DoD contractors, etc...

And the vast majority of the people that pay taxes don't know how they are being robbed and dissed in the process.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #5)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 05:57 PM

16. Thanks. I've been asking these questions, and now, finally from Mel Goodman's testimony and

your post, I am able to answer them.

So Benghazi wasn't even a consulte.

I read in a Columbus, Ohio newspaper around the time of the election in 2012 (vaguely around that time) that Stevens had asked a guard at the facility about the security.

That guard was not an American.

It seems so obvious that Benghazi is to the East of Libya and close to Egypt and Syria, so I wondered whether maybe there was some sort of weapons exchange or something being coordinated there. And then I learned about the CIA station there, and that put up more red flags in my mind.

So now my worst suspicions have been confirmed.

Obama and Hillary and above all, Petraeus, acted too rashly to deal with Ghadafi and Libya correctly. They did not any of them exercise good judgment.

I wonder whether that is the real reason that Petraeus' affair was made public, and he was fired and then prosecuted for something that was enough to prevent him from running for office in the future.

So Hillary is left. But she has shown such poor judgment on foreign affairs, on a number of issues.

This is a very sad situation for our country.

If I could ask the right questions sitting in my living room knowing so little about the facts, how must this situation appear to people in other parts of the world who know all the facts.

This is very bad for our country.

We should not nominate or elect Hillary Clinton or anyone who has supported our foreign policy in the Middle East, India, Pakistan, etc.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #5)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 09:28 PM

19. Truth! And that is why they wouldn't go there. They really don't care about what happened, they

 

already know. They just want to smear Clinton.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #5)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 01:08 AM

28. Benghazi!! is a convenient, bipartisan diversion that like Whitewater cut off lines of investigation

The hearings were really a great success as theater of the absurd. The inconvenient facts -- that Libya and Syria serial regime change was a colossal CIA failure --can't be made to altogether "disappear", but the event can be made to seem so absurd that no "serious person" in Washington wants to pick into the topic any further. That's the purpose of these bipartisan spectacles. Clinton, who is the leading neocon in America, is now cleansed, thanks to the "opposition" Republicans.

It's a formula, or a ritual, really. The ghosts of the Clintons' (and the Bush family's) role in BCCI/Iran-Contra were also exorcised by the Republicans botched Whitewater investigation. Mismanaged Congressional hearings, sabotaged from above, also managed to whitewash the Bush CIA's role in arming both sides in the Iran-Iraq War and in creating terrorist Rightwing death squads in Central America, with the help of Rightwing Democrats, such as the Clintons. The theater of the absurd is how both wings of the spooks stay in power permanently in America.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #5)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 03:40 AM

33. They were trying to track down all the illicit weapons.

It's well known what the station was there for.

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 04:38 PM

6. Sy Hersh reported on where the weapons in Libya went

after Gaddafi's capture and killing. It was in his article about the "Rat Line" and it got little attention because Sy has supposedly been discredited.

In her testimony yesterday Hillary said that Stevens was "buying back Gadaffi's weapons" but it's entirely possible that those weapons were shifted to Syrian Assad opponents and even into the hands of others by the "Rat Line."

Whether Hersh was correct, or not, there are a lot of weapons in the ME that got into the "wrong hands" because the fall of Libya increased the violence in the ME. It's hard to believe the CIA was buying back those weapons and shipping them back to the US for safekeeping.

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Response to KoKo (Reply #6)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 10:41 PM

20. Thanks. The Hersh article is the most coherent and logical explanation in my view, but of

course, I don't know the facts.

It's just provides the best answer I have heard to my questions. Generally,, the media does not ask intelligent questions.

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Response to Segami (Original post)


Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 04:50 PM

8. K & R, can't rec this enough

"What was learned was irrelevant," Goodman says. "What was relevant, wasn't discussed."

Same as it ever was. It sickens me to watch this, and to watch DU members rally to her side as if she's the most incredible republican-eating warrior we've ever had. They completely miss the point, as usual, and by design of the powers that be. Suckers all.

Though it isn't the same (the Republicans are comically inept and only interested in political gain), it reminds me of the Iran - Contra hearings in th 80's. Great crimes were committed by the intersection of U.S. politicians, CIA, and paramilitary assets. They were caught doing their dirty deeds, and a congressional hearing was held. The important questions about what was going on were conveniently not asked, and the principle witness and war criminal, Oliver North, was glorified as he skillfully navigated the faux hearing and presented himself as a tireless defender of the good ol' U.S. of A.

To watch our own members fall for the same rush of patriotism and partisan hero-worship for Hillary's ability to hold up in the hearing is really sad.

Our activities in Libya are a great example of why I cannot support Hillary Clinton, and I hope more Democrats can get their heads out of their anti-republican fervor to see the world-view they are buying into.

Don't be fooled people, this is how people get sucked into the wrong road. Being the best at this game is nothing to be proud of. The whole stinking game is the problem, and it's not a game, it's the destroyed lives of millions of innocents in every corner of the earth as the military industrial complex keeps the world safe for global fossil fuel extraction, destroying our environment and bringing vast wealth to a few greedy industrialists who increase their portfolios as the planet becomes uninhabitable and war breaks out all around.

Please, everyone, we have to be better than this, there is a lot on the line and it's now or never to get things right.

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #8)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 05:03 PM

10. Excellent response

Yea, it does remind me of Iran-Contra and that smirking bastard North...but, once again, not an actual hearing meant to find answers...an exercise in what is wrong with the USA...

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #8)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 05:10 PM

11. ( ._.)

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #8)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 05:28 PM

12. +1000

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #8)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 11:11 PM

24. I second your statement.

"Our activities in Libya are a great example of why I cannot support Hillary Clinton, and I hope more Democrats can get their heads out of their anti-republican fervor to see the world-view they are buying into."

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 04:57 PM

9. Thanks,

Good post...lots of real questions about government action...never to be answered...

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 05:57 PM

15. We were assisting allies in removing Qaddafi and...

 

Allowing for free elections. We were also removing weapons from falling into the wrong hands. What is happening in Libya was inevitable. We can't have genocidal dictators controlling and threatening allies.

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Response to JaneyVee (Reply #15)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 06:20 PM

18. What was Hillary's excuse for supporting the military coup in Honduras?

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Response to JaneyVee (Reply #15)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 10:48 PM

21. Neo-imperialist apologia, in the service of a partisan agenda. n/t

 

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #21)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 11:08 PM

23. Coming from you, that's utterly laughable.

 

Especially given how much you've sung the praises of Putin's crusade against ISIS--which even the Russians themselves have admitted is bullshit--as cover for crushing a popular revolt against the dictator who hosts their only Mediterranean naval base.

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Response to NuclearDem (Reply #23)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 06:16 AM

35. A popular revolt supported by 1000s of foreign jihadis?

Just like the popular revolt in Libya supported by nine months of foreign air strikes and outside special forces?

It's all fun and games when it involves faraway countries, but the chaos is getting closer and closer to home.

Europe is being overwhelmed by migrants, and they'll be coming to America's shores too soon.

I would be all for it if it really was to spread democracy, but (whatever the stated intention) that isn't result.

Instead we're literally seeing religious extremism expand exponentially before our very eyes.

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Response to JaneyVee (Reply #15)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 11:14 PM

26. Did you read the Seymour Hersh article?

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 06:19 PM

17. Kicked and recommended.

Thanks for the thread, Segami.

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 10:48 PM

22. top constituency of the 2016 election (if not all)?

 

What is The National Security State?

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Response to reddread (Reply #22)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 10:26 AM

37. The permanent government: the Pentagon, intel agencies, foreign policy mandarins. Not elected, but

needs one of their own in the Oval Office. Someone who has been read in and is ruthless enough to carry out the mission without flinching at the casualties. Someone like G.H.W. Bush, Henry Kissinger or one of their brighter students, like Hillary Clinton.

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Fri Oct 23, 2015, 11:12 PM

25. knr! We removed a dictator and helped the country to hold elections ...

all is well.

Pay no attention to the destabilization, they held elections, just look at Iraq as an example.

We may not like dictators, but maybe sometimes they are better than what follows.





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Response to Segami (Original post)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 01:05 AM

27. kick nt

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 01:16 AM

29. This is the most rational, meaningful thread about these hearings on DU. Perhaps the only one.

The best of what DU was, and still is. The rest is just the cheap seats in the cheering section, which is what the Party Rightwing always wanted this place to be.

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 01:20 AM

30. The intent is to harangue her

 

They want to instill a sort of 'Clinton fatigue' on the public by having these mindless hearings. Watch them cobble together a 'damning' video from her testimony. It's what they do.

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Response to AgingAmerican (Reply #30)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 10:21 AM

36. The result is to immunize her of consequences from her serial ME policy failures.

Last edited Sat Oct 24, 2015, 04:28 PM - Edit history (1)

Whether that was the intent, I don't know. But, the process is familiar and goes back to Whitewater. Rinse, and repeat.

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 02:47 AM

31. K & R

recommendation for ENLIGHTENING thread.

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 03:35 AM

32. There was no way they could explore that aspect.

General Ripper was right about one thing, especially with regard to conservatives: "......They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought....."

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Response to Segami (Original post)

Sat Oct 24, 2015, 05:22 AM

34. really good post, thank you

 

Right on point. It's so easy to get swayed into the bull shit. I like to think I'm pretty resistant, but not enough obviously!

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