Tuesday, on “The Lead,” CNN’s Jake Tapper reported that, “As of today, it’s official, the Obama Administration is holding no one responsible for what happened before the deadly attacks on the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya.” This is a fact now that Secretary of State John Kerry has decided to reinstate the four State Department officials put on administrative leave last year over the inexcusable lack of security at our compound. This, despite repeated pleas for additional security from our diplomatic team:
Around that time then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton put four State Department officials on administrative leave. Those four were invited back to work Tuesday, after Secretary of State John Kerry decided that they do not deserve any formal disciplinary action.
A State Department official told CNN that there was no breach of duty for these officials, and that they are not returning to their previous posts
What’s notable about the move is that those decisions to not provide additional security personnel and assets in Libya, is one of the only parts of the Benghazi scandal that Obama administration officials will acknowledge was a real problem.
Tapper then hosted Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz:
Tapper followed up on his CNN report with a biting piece of analysis online:
You can go back and forth on talking points, and whether U.S. military assets were in position to rescue the Americans being attacked in Benghazi. But the continual denials throughout 2011 and 2012 of additional security for Ambassador Chris Stevens and the others there – that part of Benghazi no one with any real knowledge or perspective on the tragedy can refute. …
The independent review of what happened in Benghazi noted that security was “grossly inadequate,” and faulted “systemic failures, and leadership and management deficiencies at senior levels,” though it was not established that anyone “breached his or her duty.”
Note how Tapper intentionally avoids the other controversies surrounding Benghazi and instead wisely remains focused on what is not in dispute: the appalling lack of security. But even though this failure is not in dispute, the Obama administration is still refusing to even fire those responsible for ignoring repeated requests for the additional security that might have made it a lot harder for al-Qaeda affiliates to murder four Americans, including an American ambassador.
Since the night of the fatal attack last September, Tapper has been one of only a handful of mainstream media journalists willing to keep poking and digging into a story that would’ve consumed our media if Obama had an “R” after his name.
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