The report on the Benghazi attack attracted attention today for two reason, the first being that failures were identified and no one in particular was singled out for responsibility, the second being that resignations began within hours of the public getting the news.
Important parts of this investigation, and the changes that result, or do not result, must be followed closely by the media and the public.
When a serious incident such as the Benghazi attack occurs, and lives are lost, the public has a right to expect (among other things ) that the Government will take all necessary steps to ensure that we do not repeat any mistakes or allow any identified failures to re occur.
The fact that several state Department officials resigned as a result of the report release (as well they should have), is not enough. Those that fell on their swords have one more obligation to those that died â€“ take other culpable employees with them, and loudly identify any issues not yet uncovered.
The public needs to know that identified incompetence, â€œlack of leadershipâ€ and failure of those in areas of responsibility, are met with appropriate corrective measures.
Reports siting facts that â€œno intentional misconduct was foundâ€ while â€œlack of leadership and responsivenessâ€ was, should bring no satisfaction to the taxpayer, when such conduct contributed to the death of US citizens. The fact that the report concluded that the failures did not rise to meet the definition of dereliction of duty, is not good news either.
Regardless of the fact that the report avoids specific blame, and the fact that the narrative seems to have been written by a civil service labor attorney, the Federal Government still needs to deal with the reality that the failure of leaders and managers within the Department of State, ( whether they can be fired, or not, still needs to be addressed by having these people removed from the position they held on the day of the attack.
Definitive action such as this, is the only guarantee that those who put themselves in harmâ€™s on behalf of the taxpayer, can be sure that a Government employee who fails others, gets no other opportunity to cause harm. Those holding some of the responsibility, whether it be due to their lack of judgment, skill or backbone, need to be in the same barrel that goes over the falls with the supervisors.
Aschmails Tweets at https://twitter.com/bridgeforsale