The black flag of Benghazi

al qaeda black flagThe fruit of President Obama’s foreign policy leadership may well be exemplified by a black flag which currently stands aloft outside a Benghazi hospital. The visceral symbol of Ansar al-Sharia is now boasting claim of its presence again. Ansar al-Sharia, the militia group largely held responsible for the deaths of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and the three fellow Americans, is making a comeback into Libyan society, according to The Washington Post

Last week the hospital finally reopened its doors, but only after a security force made up of Ansar al-Sharia alumni and neighborhood fighters took up position outside. Ansar al-Sharia’s black flag flies above the main entrance. Two of its tan gun trucks — their identifying stickers replaced with a new title, ‘The Selmani Youth Forum,” — stand outside.

Stunningly, notorious militia groups have resurfaced at Benghazi checkpoints and hospitals, as security  “forces.”  In a vacuum of leadership, Ansar al-Sharia and the militia, Rafallah al-Sahati — a militia involved in the Sep. 11, 2012 incident — have reappeared according to The Washington Post. The presence of such militias in the Benghazi region is a visible sign of the Obama administration’s inability or unwillingness to bring to justice those responsible for the September massacre, in my opinion. This past Sunday, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) appeared on NBC’s Meet The Press in search of Benghazi answers. McCain directly asked moderator David Gregory:

I am asking you, do you care whether four Americans died? And shouldn’t people be held accountable for the fact that four Americans died? …We don’t even know who the people were who were evacuated from the consulate the day after the (Benghazi) attack.

According to The Washington Post, months earlier Rafallah al-Sahati’s “commanders bragged about the militia’s role on the rescue team that assisted the American evacuation from the mission on the night of the attack.” Further, “it has changed its name to ‘Libyan Shield 3’ because it now falls under the command of the Defense Ministry, said one of the group’s fighters, Basit Mohamed.”

Katherine Trunk is a contributor to The Brenner Brief. Twitter: @KatherineTrunk

Katherine Trunk is a contributor to The Brenner Brief. Twitter: @KatherineTrunk

President Obama’s Cabinet and administration should reveal what they know about Rafallah al-Sahati’s actions during the time surrounding the September attack. A closed special hearing should be held to gather information with regard to those evacuated from the attack to further obtain accountability . Those responsible for the September attack should be apprehended, detained, and punished for their actions.

It is unthinkable that a militia responsible for the four American deaths, such as Ansar al-Sharia, would be commanding  checkpoints and securing Benghazi hospitals. The vacuum of leadership in Benghazi is reflective of a larger vacuum of leadership on the part of President Barack Obama. Feeble leadership breeds danger, and brute power becomes awakened when weakness is perceived. Benghazi perpetrators masquerading as guardians of Libyan society begs a response.

Benghazi’s new standard bearers of civility have blood on their hands. President Obama repeatedly apologized for a tasteless, fictional video. Oddly, President Obama’s curiosity remains steadfastly silent with regard to securing justice for his countrymen lost on Sep. 11, 2012.

Justice is not a prerogative, but an imperative.

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Comments

  1. Reblogged this on World Chaos.

  2. Katherine.
    Love it! ‘The vacuum of leadership in Benghazi is reflective of a larger vacuum of leadership on the part of president Barack Obama.’

    Great article!

  3. I am convinced that the American people will never know what happened at Benghazi until it is pried from the clenched fist of the Obama administration. This is more than an absence of leadership, it is an active cover-up without regard to the lives of citizens serving our country in Libya. We know the administration lied about the cause of the violence, but we do not know why.

  4. Exactly how badly do you wish to terminate the killers of the Ambassador in Bengazi. Enough to start another war, one with Lybia? We could, I suppose send in a division of troops. Or we could fly in several B1 or B52 bombers with 20,000 lb bombs and lay waste to several square miles of Bengazi. How much does the President care about those 4 men, well, how much does he care about those killed in Afganistan and Iraq, and on the roads in the U. S., or in Newtown, Conn. or the kids killed by guns supplied to the bad guys by strawbuyers. What was he doing the night the Ambassador was killed. Well he did talk to Panetta for a half hour, and told him to do what it took. Personally if I did that I would step back and let the man do his job and stay out of his way. Does it make any difference that more than half of our embassies in the world are known to not be properly secured and that congress hasn’t alloted the monies to cure that problem. Lastly to what degree do you wish the U. S. to take out be assassins tomorrow night instead of next week or next month or next year. What risks, what do you wish to gamble and how many more men do you wish to lose to satisfy your need for vengence.

    • Would you not agree that those responsible for killing a U.S. Ambassador and his 3 colleagues, be brought to justice? I did not use terms “terminate” or “vengeance”, but the aspect of this issue which is missing, and that is – Justice. It is scandalous that those responsible for the lives of a beloved Ambassador, -indeed one who loved the people of Libya very much, and that of his peers- aren’t detained, punished, imprisoned… Your letter ties in other events which are separate from this unique and horrible foreign tragedy. The other point of your letter mentions half an hour phone call re: Pres. Obama and Leon Panetta. The President and Panetta were in contact initially on a separate matter. The fact that the President did not follow up and check to see if developments were improving for the embattled Ambassador and his countrymen, speaks volumes. Truly it is tragic in more ways than one when an Ambassador, and his colleagues display more dedication to one another than the President seems to have for them. Sincerely, Katherine

  5. David doesn’t get it. Making typical straw man arguments and irrelevant points he ignores the primary issue of the Benghazi disaster. That issue is what was the Obama administration doing? Not one place in this article is there mention of divisions of troops, B! or B52 bombers, Afghanistan, Iraq, traffic deaths, schools shootings or gun purchases. Neither is there any mention in the article of congressional funding or the timing of holding the killers responsible. Vengeance and justice are distinctly different, but to someone intent on changing the subject that doesn’t matter. The deal is that the American people were told a ready made lie about the killings on 9/11 (it was a film) and there has been no explanation as to why the lie was told, or what was being done to protect our citizens in Libya. One valid pint is made in David’s reply when he states that the President told Panetta to “do what it took.” Panetta did – nothing which one may presume was what the President thought should be done. Why was nothing done except to concoct a cover-up story and offer a lie for the truth? If the administration didn’t know what was gong on then that is a valid answer – we don’t know but are investigating. This is miles from the “it was a film” lie that was repeatedly presented to the people of this nation. For Panetta to say we didn’t have enough intelligence to take action or that we could not get armed assistance in place in the 7-8 hours of the attack are just examples of more lies to cover up the truth – a truth that may someday be told.

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