“With all due respect, the fact is we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night decided to go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make?” Secretary Clinton
Madam Secretary it makes all the difference for the future security of the United States.
It is very simple to understand; they attacked; we left; they stayed and we lost.
It was not a military failure, nor an Intelligence Community failure.
It was a strategic failure of judgement and political will at the presidential level assisted by his National Security team.
Everything else is second order.
It may take historians some time to grasp what every Marine Infantry Officer knows, and the attackers also know: The US lost a battle in the field against Al-Quada.
To compound the combat debacle, glossed over by our Secretary of State, former CJCS Admiral Mullen was either ignorant of how the Infantry thinks and acts or playing politics when he issued his report and stated:
“On the night of the attacks, Benghazi, Tripoli, and Washington communicated and coordinated effectively with each other. They looped in the military right away, and the interagency response was timely and appropriate. But there simply was not enough time for U.S. military forces to have made a difference.”
The Admiral’s statement is factually wrong if one expands the time available for combat action.
This is true because if the enemy is allowed to set the combat ops tempo then it is even more of a loss because the definition of a loss is simpl.
Al-Quada attacked in Benghazi, we fought, took KIA, and then ran away.
There was plenty of time for U.S military forces to have made a difference.
It was an orchestrated A-Quada force, not a group of thugs “out for a walk” they stayed on the field of battle and the US did not counter-attack.
That is a classic definition of an infantry battle loss.
The enemy after an attack is left in control of the ground, the bad guys know this and Secretary Clinton now in front of the entire country obviously does not.
The implications for tactical and strategic deterrence in using deadly force against the enemies of America has been grievously compromised.
That is the difference it makes.