The puzzle of the Libyan attack cover-up is why the White House tried to distract the mainstream media and rewrite the attack as a “spontaneous demonstrations”.

We were told over and over again that this incident started as a protest against B porno flick that someone poorly overdubbed in Arabic and placed on youtube a couple months back to imply the film was about the prophet Mohammad.

Hello: As my grandson would say: Grandmom, google is your friend.

The coverup was obvious to anyone who read this early Reuters (Africa) report or the readers of Wired that revealed a diplomat/gamer named “VileRat” had seen signs of an impeding attack and signed off saying good bye to his friends at the gaming site.

My question is why the Mainstream media ran with the White House Spin.

Now, I’m just a grandmother and retired doc living in a small town in the rural Philippines but I have read a few Tom Clancy novels, and we do have broadband (between thunderstorms and brownouts). So it didn’t take me long to figure out that this was a major Al Qaeda attack on not just the embassy but on a lot of undercover spooks who were trying to gather information on the bad guys there.

What? You didn’t know that?

The Washington Post finally got around to talking to the local Militia and revealed to the American public this “new information”.

We finally found why the Ambassador was there having meetings with unnamed folks, but the mention of the Turkish diplomat suggests it was about nation building and coordinating with locals. Then, as the WaPo notes, things suddenly changed:

A little more than an hour later, around 9:40 p.m., everything changed.

The compound’s agents were alerted by loud noises, gunfire and explosions near the front gate.

What? No crowds of angry demonstrators?

Yet all this was obvious from that September Reuters (Africa) article I cited above:

* U.S. rescue mission to Benghazi hit by ‘professional’ ambush

* Two diplomats killed at consulate, two at ‘safe’ house fight

* Rescue raid for diplomats dogged by miscommunication

Unfortunately, some of the bad guys also managed to get information on them, including the layout of the embassy and more importantly, the location of the safe house.

A lot of the US press and WH information said things were confused.

But guess what: The consulate was on line. Again, we hear from Congressional testimony that the State Department was monitoring the attack “real time”…

Again, this should not be a big secret. I mean, I can skype my grandkids from our rural Philippine town, and even ten years ago, when I lived in rural Oklahoma, we used a satellite dish to surf the internet. One would expect the State Department to be at least as sophisticated as I am.

But one does have to wonder about this part in the WaPo article:

A little more than an hour later, around 9:40 p.m., everything changed.

The compound’s agents were alerted by loud noises, gunfire and explosions near the front gate.

So no one expected any trouble until the fight started?

Yet, as the gaming community knows, VileRat told gamers the bad guys were planning an attack “90 minutes before it started”, before signing off at about 1 pm EST, which if I calculate things correctly, was 8 pm local time.

VileRat, AKA Sean Smith was one of those killed at the consulate building, along with the Ambassador. Again from the Washington Post article:

One agent, armed with a sidearm and an assault rifle, took Stevens and State Department computer specialist Sean Smith to a safe room inside one of the compound’s two main residences — an area protected by a heavy metal grill and several locks and stocked with medical supplies and water.

So how many folks were protecting the Ambassador at the consulate?

According to the WPost article,  “Five U.S. agents and four local militiamen were providing security”.

Yet despite Smith identifying signs of a possible attack coming, not all of them had heavy weapons on them.

The other agents rushed to equip themselves with long guns, body armor, helmets and ammunition at other buildings. Two tried to make it to the building with Stevens but took fire and were forced to retreat.

Another point is that indeed, there were a lot of folks trying to rescue them:

A six-member quick reaction security team arrived on the scene from its compound across town, the officials said. About 60 Libyan militiamen accompanied the team, and it again tried to secure a perimeter around Stevens’ building, taking turns searching inside. Taking fire, the Libyan forces determined they couldn’t hold the perimeter. An evacuation plan was quickly put in place to retreat to the reaction force’s compound.

So a lot of Libyans risked their lives at the consulate, and later at the “safe house”.

What needs to be recognized is that the Libyan militia included civilians who may not have had a lot of war experience, but were willing to risk their lives to save Americans.

The attack continued when they moved to the “safe house”; alas, this location was known already by the bad guys, who were able to hit it with mortars in the dark (meaning that the mortars had been preplaced).

In other words, this was more than an civilian riot gone bad: and it was even more than an attack against the US Ambassador. It destroyed a major undercover investigation of local Alqaeda infiltration into the militias.

Why do I conclude that? From that early Reuters (Africa) report, where a local militia member complained

Having been told to expect 10 Americans and having found 37, Obeidi did not have enough vehicles to break out, despite having one heavy anti-aircraft gun mounted on a pickup truck.

I mean, why else would so many “unexpected’ American show up at the “safe house”? If even I, a grandmother in an isolated rural town in the Philippines, figured that part out the day after the attack, why did the WH pretend otherwise?

The Diplomad says the State Department won’t be the fall guy, and  Walsh at NatReview says the Spooks won’t either. So one does hope that the full story, both the good and the bad, will be made public.

But a lot of the criticism, about the lack of protection of the Ambassador, is also probably beside the point.

This was a battle, and even a dozen US Marines would have been badly outnumbered. The local help was brave, but inexperienced, given the large number of attackers.

However one wonders if a dozen US Marines with heavy weapons,  and permission from the bureaucrats to kill could have made a difference.

So what would have saved the Ambassador?  A hellfire missle strike at the crowd before they attacked the building, and if bad guys dressed as civilians and their human shields civilians are hurt, well, as Sherman said: War is hell.

Or maybe they should have employed the “Warm and Fuzzy Death Ray”

For over five years the microwave ADS, or Active Denial System (which transmits a searchlight sized beam of energy that makes people downrange feel like their skin is on fire) has been ready for use but has never been used

Yes, the US military has an “experimental” microwave weapon that can used to disable bad guys without killing them, but it hasn’t been used because of political correctness.

generations of exposure to lurid science fiction descriptions of “death rays” has made the defense bureaucrats anxious over the negative public relations potential if something like ADS was actually used. From a publicity perspective, using more lethal “non-lethal-weapons” is preferable to deploying something safer but that could be described, however incorrectly, as a “death ray.”

and yes: I am half joking about this, but nevertheless, when a couple hundred trained militia men attack an embassy, there should be alternatives to hiding in a safe house that doesn’t even have a decent air supply to keep out smoke or poison gas…


Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her entire military experience is a few years treating poison ivy in her National Guard unit, and working as a civilian doc in Africa. She blogs at Finest Kind Clinic and Fishmarket.

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