Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani said that the September 11 terrorist attack in Benghazi demonstrated that President Obama allowed his political interests to “overwhelm” his duty to protect American citizens.
“The reason this is so important is because you have the president’s politics overwhelming responsible things you would do to protect the lives of Americans and that’s an outrage,” Giuliani told Fox News’ Sean Hannity last night. “I can’t possibly imagine finding out that my ambassador is trapped, a couple of our Americans are trapped, and I don’t send the Marines in. I don’t care if Libya gets insulted. I don’t care if Libya gets angry. I’m not going to rely on Libya to protect my people when in fact there is plenty of evidence in the four months before that Libya wasn’t protecting my people.”
Giuliani was reacting to the latest news about Benghazi, including CBS’s report that Obama never convened the Counterterrorism Security Group, a task force that coordinates responses to terrorist attacks and may have made a difference in the Benghazi assault. As it is, the State Department never requested military intervention and four Americans died over several hours of fighting.
“It is sick,” Giuliani said of Obama’s leadership through this crisis. “I think the president and his administration wanted a big victory in Libya,” he suggested. “They overthrew Gaddafi — a moderate government; turns out a moderate, incompetent government was elected — everything is nice in Libya, he did a great job in Libya, he got bin Laden, al Qaida’s on the run — wow, he did a great job in Libya. So, I think they discounted all this because they didn’t want to put focus on the fact that Libya is a disaster.”
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee found 13 distinct “security threats” to the consulate in the days leading up to the September 11 attack, but the State Department refused to provide more security to U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens. The security officer responsible for the Benghazi consulate, who has been very critical of the State Department’s protection of the Americans there, said that the U.S. government cut security in order to “normalize” operations in Libya.
“All kinds of attacks going on in Benghazi; consulate hit twice; the British consulate attacked; the Red Cross attacked,” Giuliani noted. “Attack after attack after attack. Now you have these new communiques, these new letters that were just found, asking for help from the Libyan government that was turned down. A Libyan police officer who looked like he was casing the consulate the day before the attack.”