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Subject: The reason Benghazi is an issue is because of Mitt Romney! or something rss

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Chad
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chaendlmaier wrote:
No interesting debate ever came from one of these and you know it.


Why do you think that is?

Is it the messenger?
The message?
Or do you think there is no potential issue to discuss?
 
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David desJardins
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I have no idea what the Benghazi "issue" is. In the VP debate, the moderator asked whether the failure to anticipate and defend against the Benghazi attacks was a "massive intelligence failure". It seems clear that it was an intelligence failure, but pretty far short of being a "massive" one---as damage to US interests goes, this is pretty low on the scale, and no one could have been surprised that there were threats and risks in Benghazi, that the people there accepted in order to pursue their mission. None of this has anything to do with the White House, the President isn't deciding each day how many Marines to send to each consulate. If we want to criticize on failure to take this risk seriously enough and provide adequate security, then Ryan comes off by far the worst of the four candidates, he's the only one who actively proposed big cuts in funding for this kind of security.

So why is anyone even talking about this? Is there anyone non-rabid who can answer?
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I think it is about whether the either one of or all of the state department, intelligence community, or administration misled the American people about the attacks. Namely, whether it was a planned terrorist attack for 9/11 or arose from the video protests.

It looks like it was a planned terrorist attack. The State Department says there assessment was always that it was a terrorist attack with no video connection. My guess is the intelligence community will catch some grief over it.
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David desJardins
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SpaceGhost wrote:
I think it is about whether the either one of or all of the state department, intelligence community, or administration misled the American people about the attacks. Namely, whether it was a planned terrorist attack for 9/11 or arose from the video protests.


"Misled" usually implies intent. If the administration and/or the intelligence community gave out incorrect information about the attacks, because that's what they believed at the time, and they got better information later, that's not "misleading" anyone, right? That's just them saying what they knew at the time that they knew it.

No one's going to claim the attacks were X if they knew they were Y and they knew that that fact would come out a few hours later. The accusation doesn't make much sense, does it?
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DaviddesJ wrote:
SpaceGhost wrote:
I think it is about whether the either one of or all of the state department, intelligence community, or administration misled the American people about the attacks. Namely, whether it was a planned terrorist attack for 9/11 or arose from the video protests.


"Misled" usually implies intent. If the administration and/or the intelligence community gave out incorrect information about the attacks, because that's what they believed at the time, and they got better information later, that's not "misleading" anyone, right? That's just them saying what they knew at the time that they knew it.

No one's going to claim the attacks were X if they knew they were Y and they knew that that fact would come out a few hours later. The accusation doesn't make much sense, does it?


Part of the issue is that Obama is trying to be diplomartic and not upset Lybia, whilst Romeny thinks (because he understands diplomacy and how to not up set people better) that trying to not upset potential (or indeed current) allies is not what America is about.
 
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Here you are.
 
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David desJardins
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On Oct. 12, 1937, the American consul general in Beirut was shot and killed by a man who had been refused a passport to travel to the United States. J.T. Marriner, 45, was described as "a brilliant member of the United States diplomatic service."

I wonder if they spent the next month arguing about whether it was a terrorist attack and who was responsible for covering up that fact.
 
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David desJardins
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Drew1365 wrote:
Because people are dead, David.

You know, people?

Humans?

Those flesh-covered bipeds?


Just this month, 8 Americans have been killed in Afghanistan. Why aren't we talking about each of them and whether it's the President's fault and how that makes him unfit for re-election?
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DaviddesJ wrote:
Drew1365 wrote:
Because people are dead, David.

You know, people?

Humans?

Those flesh-covered bipeds?


Just this month, 8 Americans have been killed in Afghanistan. Why aren't we talking about each of them and whether it's the President's fault and how that makes him unfit for re-election?


Why limit ourselves to Americans? What about the Pakistanis who are being killed daily, by US drones and by Taliban fighters? And why limit ourselves to War on Terror-related deaths? What about the people who died of fungal meningitis this week?

You forget, David, that in Drew's mind, everything that goes wrong anywhere in the world makes Obama unfit for re-election. But a guy's got to prioritize. And since the economy doesn't seem to be the hobby horse the anti-Obama people can ride to drive him out of office, they're searching high and low for something else, anything else, that will do the trick. It's kind of the spaghetti approach: throw everything at the wall and see what sticks.
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DCAnderson wrote:
I don't think the term "Monday Morning Quarterback" has ever been more apropos to a situation.

Is that like a Saturday Afternoon Soldier, but with less self sacrifice?
 
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Golux13 wrote:
You forget, David, that in Drew's mind, everything that goes wrong anywhere in the world makes Obama unfit for re-election.


I'm not surprised that the wingnuts are talking a lot about Benghazi. What confuses me is that there is a lot more talk about it in the mainstream media than it seems could possibly be justified.
 
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DaviddesJ wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
You forget, David, that in Drew's mind, everything that goes wrong anywhere in the world makes Obama unfit for re-election.


I'm not surprised that the wingnuts are talking a lot about Benghazi. What confuses me is that there is a lot more talk about it in the mainstream media than it seems could possibly be justified.


Probably because it was a terrorist attack on 9/11.
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SpaceGhost wrote:
DaviddesJ wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
You forget, David, that in Drew's mind, everything that goes wrong anywhere in the world makes Obama unfit for re-election.


I'm not surprised that the wingnuts are talking a lot about Benghazi. What confuses me is that there is a lot more talk about it in the mainstream media than it seems could possibly be justified.


Probably because it was a terrorist attack on 9/11.


So what? Is it beneath you to actually explain?

If I had to guess what you mean, I'd guess you're saying that it has profound symbolic significance and so some people attach great weight to it even though that's far out of proportion to its actual significance.

But for all I know you could be saying something completely different from that.
 
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SpaceGhost wrote:
I think it is about whether the either one of or all of the state department, intelligence community, or administration misled the American people about the attacks. Namely, whether it was a planned terrorist attack for 9/11 or arose from the video protests.

It looks like it was a planned terrorist attack. The State Department says there assessment was always that it was a terrorist attack with no video connection. My guess is the intelligence community will catch some grief over it.


Yep. Much like rabid Clinton-lickers kept trying to make the story about sex instead of him perjuring himself. Even to this day there are large infested pockets of America oozing the same narrative... that a blow job doesn't make him a criminal while studiously ignoring the felony he did commit. This story is similar, Darth Axelrod and his minions are trying to make the narrative about something that isn't what people are upset about. People want to know why the administration lied and misled, not why the State Department didn't have a brigade of Marines in Benghazi.
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DWTripp wrote:
People want to know why the administration lied and misled


What did the administration lie and misle about?
 
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DaviddesJ wrote:
DWTripp wrote:
People want to know why the administration lied and misled


What did the administration lie and misle about?


The basic question is how the attacks at Benghazi were ever linked to the video and associated protests in other countries. This is a big question because there is a pile of evidence from the State Department witnessing the attacks in real time and knowing immediately that there was not an associated protest.

So, the biggest question that most people (and I would include all media outlets here that are covering it, both left and right) is why did UN Ambassador say that it was due to the video six days after the attack. Also, why did the President reference the video, implying a linkage with the attacks, at the UN General Assembly.

I can see how the White House can shield themselves from this by claiming that they got information from a third party (e.g., the Intelligence Community); however, it is unclear how the UN Ambassador comes out of this cleanly since they had evidence during the attack that the two were not linked.

Then, the natural question is, why did she promote the "video" as a reason? Generally, I think that people would just like to know the timeline.
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DaviddesJ wrote:
SpaceGhost wrote:
DaviddesJ wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
You forget, David, that in Drew's mind, everything that goes wrong anywhere in the world makes Obama unfit for re-election.


I'm not surprised that the wingnuts are talking a lot about Benghazi. What confuses me is that there is a lot more talk about it in the mainstream media than it seems could possibly be justified.


Probably because it was a terrorist attack on 9/11.


So what? Is it beneath you to actually explain?

If I had to guess what you mean, I'd guess you're saying that it has profound symbolic significance and so some people attach great weight to it even though that's far out of proportion to its actual significance.

But for all I know you could be saying something completely different from that.


I didn't mean to indicate it was beneath me, it just seems obvious why so many outlets are covering it.

While your points about this being a dangerous part of the world are well taken, the killing of an ambassador is still an outlying event - it hasn't happened in 33 years. Furthermore, it does point to perhaps poor decision making in the State Department. Also, one would think that a random person would know to beef up security on 9/11 (and, yes, you had the right of it -- it does get some emotional boost due to symbolic significance).
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David desJardins
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SpaceGhost wrote:
I can see how the White House can shield themselves from this by claiming that they got information from a third party (e.g., the Intelligence Community); however, it is unclear how the UN Ambassador comes out of this cleanly since they had evidence during the attack that the two were not linked.


What's all of the stuff about "shield" and "cleanly" referring to? Isn't it normal to assume that people are telling the truth about what they believe when they have no incentive to lie?

If anything, I would think that if the people whom you mention had known that there was a premeditated terrorist attack they would have played that up. They probably didn't emphasize that possibility in their state of uncertainty because they didn't want to be accused of exaggeration about things they couldn't prove and that might turn out to be unfounded (hmm, Colin Powell, WMDs, anyone remember that?).
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David desJardins
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SpaceGhost wrote:
While your points about this being a dangerous part of the world are well taken, the killing of an ambassador is still an outlying event - it hasn't happened in 33 years.


But no one seems to be talking about the killing of the ambassador. I agree that seems a sensible subject for discussion. But what people seem to be talking about is whether different people in the administration got the facts right in the uncertain period immediately after the attacks. I just don't see why anyone would care.
 
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DaviddesJ wrote:
SpaceGhost wrote:
I can see how the White House can shield themselves from this by claiming that they got information from a third party (e.g., the Intelligence Community); however, it is unclear how the UN Ambassador comes out of this cleanly since they had evidence during the attack that the two were not linked.


What's all of the stuff about "shield" and "cleanly" referring to? Isn't it normal to assume that people are telling the truth about what they believe when they have no incentive to lie?

If anything, I would think that if the people whom you mention had known that there was a premeditated terrorist attack they would have played that up. They probably didn't emphasize that possibility in their state of uncertainty because they didn't want to be accused of exaggeration about things they couldn't prove and that might turn out to be unfounded (hmm, Colin Powell, WMDs, anyone remember that?).


Generally, I assume politicians are telling a shade of the truth, but never the unvarnished truth.

I think in this case, playing up the attack would have been politically costly for the President. The main takeaway from the DNC was from Biden "GM is alive, and Bin Laden is dead" and from the President "Al Qaeda are on their heels".

An outlying event that is significant, like the killing of an ambassador, directly conflicts -- at least in perception -- that Al Qaeda is on its heels. It appears that the war on terrorism is resurgent (at least to the public).

And, if there was no reason to lie, then if they knew within 24 hours that there was no protest prior to the attack, what was the motivation to link the attack to the video and protests in other countries? Apparently, there is now evidence of Facebook posts on 9/10 stating that an attack would take place on 9/11. Anyway, I think that is the question being asked by the media.
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DaviddesJ wrote:
SpaceGhost wrote:
While your points about this being a dangerous part of the world are well taken, the killing of an ambassador is still an outlying event - it hasn't happened in 33 years.


But no one seems to be talking about the killing of the ambassador. I agree that seems a sensible subject for discussion. But what people seem to be talking about is whether different people in the administration got the facts right in the uncertain period immediately after the attacks. I just don't see why anyone would care.


I think, but could be wrong, is that by so widely disseminating a false story for almost two weeks, it appears that the Administration is trying to avoid any political fallout that would come from labeling this as a terrorist act by an organized branch of a terrorist organization. It gives the appearance of caring more about reelection than being "honest" with the American public.

Normally, I would probably tend to agree with you. But, I think that the Administration pushed a false story for too long, and now it has become an issue with journalists (who could make a career by finding a "cover-up"; especially one that brought down an incumbents reelection campaign). I tended towards your thoughts until more and more media started picking this up; so, apparently, it is important to people.
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SpaceGhost wrote:
I think in this case, playing up the attack would have been politically costly for the President.


I don't think it would even have been better for the President politically if the attacks had been spontaneous. I think everyone in the US understands that the US has terrorist adversaries who can potentially mount organized surprise attacks anywhere in the world, that we can't have infinitely strong defenses everywhere, that retreating into an armored fortress would interfere with the actual diplomatic mission and the purpose of being there, etc. Reminding them that such attacks are probably going to continue to occur from time to time, would seem to build support for the President. We certainly didn't see support for President Bush fall after 9/11.

But even if you believed otherwise, it still couldn't possibly be better for the President to "lie" or "mislead" for a few days about the attacks, only to have a bunch of stories come out about how the facts are different. That doesn't even seem remotely plausible. Is this really what you think? I wouldn't think anyone but wingnuts could believe it.

Quote:
if they knew within 24 hours that there was no protest prior to the attack


Obviously no one knew such a thing. There are contemporaneous news stories from reporters who claimed to observe the protests. I guess they were lying. But how could anyone in the White House or even the State Department possibly know all of that within 24 hours?? All US personnel have been withdrawn from Benghazi, there's no way to gather any intelligence, there are all sorts of conflicting reports, and what you're really mad about is that everyone in the State Department and the White House didn't instantly know every detail of what had happened? Really??
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Quote:
I think, but could be wrong, is that by so widely disseminating a false story for almost two weeks, it appears that the Administration is trying to avoid any political fallout that would come from labeling this as a terrorist act by an organized branch of a terrorist organization. It gives the appearance of caring more about reelection than being "honest" with the American public.


As above. Obama has invested a lot into the notion that incidents which are clearly terrorism, aren't. He called an attack on US soil where the shooter was yelling and screaming Allah while gunning soldiers down a "domestic" incident. I watched him on The View and even then, after the attacks, he hemmed and hawed.

In addition, to acknowledge this is terrorism would mean he'd have to explain going to Vegas instead of doing his job. Bush took heat (unjustified) for not abandoning the school kids in Florida the instant he was told about the Twin Towers. Obama needed this to not be "terrorism" so his fund-raising activities wouldn't look crass and appear to be demonstrating he prefers to spend time campaigning than doing the job he was hired to do in the first place,

Why does anyone need this explained?
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David desJardins
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SpaceGhost wrote:
I think that the Administration pushed a false story for too long


Do you actually think that? Or is this just one of those, "Well, I don't think it, but reasonable people could think so and so there is the appearance of a possibility of a shade of a doubt" kinds of things?

If you actually, honestly believe that people in the administration or the State Department misrepresented what they knew about the attacks, and when they knew it, I think that's way out in wingnut territory.
 
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SpaceGhost wrote:
DaviddesJ wrote:
SpaceGhost wrote:
I can see how the White House can shield themselves from this by claiming that they got information from a third party (e.g., the Intelligence Community); however, it is unclear how the UN Ambassador comes out of this cleanly since they had evidence during the attack that the two were not linked.


What's all of the stuff about "shield" and "cleanly" referring to? Isn't it normal to assume that people are telling the truth about what they believe when they have no incentive to lie?

If anything, I would think that if the people whom you mention had known that there was a premeditated terrorist attack they would have played that up. They probably didn't emphasize that possibility in their state of uncertainty because they didn't want to be accused of exaggeration about things they couldn't prove and that might turn out to be unfounded (hmm, Colin Powell, WMDs, anyone remember that?).


Generally, I assume politicians are telling a shade of the truth, but never the unvarnished truth.

I think in this case, playing up the attack would have been politically costly for the President. The main takeaway from the DNC was from Biden "GM is alive, and Bin Laden is dead" and from the President "Al Qaeda are on their heels".

An outlying event that is significant, like the killing of an ambassador, directly conflicts -- at least in perception -- that Al Qaeda is on its heels. It appears that the war on terrorism is resurgent (at least to the public).

And, if there was no reason to lie, then if they knew within 24 hours that there was no protest prior to the attack, what was the motivation to link the attack to the video and protests in other countries? Apparently, there is now evidence of Facebook posts on 9/10 stating that an attack would take place on 9/11. Anyway, I think that is the question being asked by the media.


I'm having a lot of trouble finding the mountain of evidence showing that the Administration knew something different from what they said. Most of the claims of that nature are being echoed and re-echoed by conservative and right-wing blogs and Fox News, but I can't find any unvarnished, unspun compilations of the evidence - which would have to include something showing what the administration knew at each point in the aftermath of Benghazi and what they actually said.

I am curious about why the comments in this Atlantic piece - written within the past two weeks - don't apply.
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