Top 10 Attacks on US Embassies in Republican Administrations that Lindsey Graham doesn’t Care about

(By Juan Cole)

The Republicans in Congress keep beating the dead horse of Benghazi. Now they have sprung a briefing memo for Susan Rice, based on CIA talking points. I shows that the briefing hewed to the CIA line of the time, which was that the Benghazi disturbances were copy cats of those in Cairo, all provoked by a Coptic-Republican Islamophobic network that put a phony film on the internet attacking the Prophet Muhammad and underlining that it was made in America. (The CIA version actually has things to recommend it, and an NYT investigation found that it was local groups, not al-Qaeda, behind the Benghazi consulate attack.) The briefing memo is what one would expect and isn’t scandalous. That the Obama administration hadn’t released it earlier is perhaps disappointing. But then, we’ve never gotten to see the Bush era memos on how they planned to do briefings on the lack of WMD in Iraq, or about the Abu Ghraib torture scandal.

Senator Lindsey Graham called the Obama Democrats “scumbags” for not releasing the briefing memo earlier. But he’s never demanded the Bush administration memos on its extensive failures in Iraq and Afghanistan.

It continues to be worthwhile underlining, moreover, that far more embassy attacks occurred under Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush than have under Obama, and that Republican in Congress never investigated Reagan or Bush for their failures. To wit:

1. The US embassy in Athens, Greece, was attacked in 2007.

2. The US embassy in Serbia was burned down early in 2008?

3. The US embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, were attacked in September 2008

4. A suicide bombing at the US consulate in Karachi, Pakistan, in 2006 killed a US diplomat.

5. In 2006, a car bomb was set off outside the US embassy in Damascus.

6. Assailants set off bombs outside the US embassy in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, in 2004, at a time when the Uzbek government was allied with Bush in the ‘war on terror’ and was trying 15 persons it accused of al-Qaeda ties. Bush should have known.

7. The US consulate in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia, was attacked in 2004.

8. Anti-American Iraqis were regularly shelling the Green Zone in Baghdad where the US embassy is, in 2008.

9. In April 1983, radical Shiite suicide bombers blew up the US embassy in Beirut, killing 63. Reagan did nothing to prevent this attack, and his ultimate response to it and a later deadly attack on US Marines in Beirut was to quietly withdraw from Lebanon (he called it “redeploying offshore”). Democrats at the time controlled Congress but they didn’t have endless hearings on how Reagan failed our diplomats by not being prepared, not about whether it was wise for Reagan to shell Lebanese villages from the sea and kill 1,000 people.

10. The American embassy in Kuwait was attacked under Reagan in 1983 by radical members of the Da`wa (Islamic Mission) Party. George W. Bush later presided over the election of one of the bombers to the Iraqi parliament. The Da`wa Party, which has since given up terrorism and become a democratic party, has ruled Iraq since 2005, courtesy of Bush.

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Related video:

The Young Turks: “Attack on US Embassy — Will Bush be Held Responsible?”

11 Responses

  1. The senate has always had, and probably always will have, its share of scurrilous characters. Who ever concocted the canard that the US senate was the world’s greatest deliberative body?

    • “Who ever concocted the canard that the US senate was the world’s greatest deliberative body?”

      I believe that would be the U.S. Senate…

  2. I long for a straight presentation of the situation rather than the kind of smirking, sarcastic delivery given by Rachel Maddow and Cenk Uygur. There is no need for the “what a bunch of fools” delivery and it grates after a short while. Could Walter Cronkite please come out of retirement?

    • Yeah, you might have to actually read, think and use some portion of your brain rather than have someone tell you what to think.

    • It would have to be the Zombie Walter Cronkite, as he died 5 years ago. On the other hand, think of the ratings!! “Your Zombie World News – with Walter Cronkite!”

  3. So how many of these incidents were spun in a way which misdirected the American people and landed an innocent filmmaker in jail? How many of these incidents had the government spokesfolk lying to us about them – not “information later shows they were mistaken” but “information later shows they knew the truth and chose not to use it in their explanations”? Unless all of those above were like that, they are irrelevant to this issue. They are not related. This is not about “Republicans” being inconsistent about when they choose to be outraged. By the way – let’s go ahead and presume that in the past we were lied to and the GOP (or even Democrats) were not outraged in a manner sufficient to our elevated (now) future tastes: does that mean that all further incidents get a pass? Are you REALLY saying that “because they didn’t get what WE think is mad enough in the past they are now not allowed to get mad?” Yeesh. I expected, I dunno, basic reason and intelligence brought here when I read this piece, not juvenile partisan shots using “logic” which would be torn apart in < 30 seconds at even a second-rate debate club's practice session.

    Maybe we do need Zombie Cronkite – he'd be partisan but he'd try harder than the blow-dried brigade and Juicebox Mafia and the current poor crop of partisans feeding the echo chambers on both sides. And he'd deliver news without hyperbole or blatantly obvious (and readily debunked and therefore dismissed) spin.

    That last bit is really the critical part: you do yourself and your cause(s) no service by using such weak structures to frame your dissent or disagreement – nobody educated enough to see the flaws gives you much beyond the time of day once you exhibit such ill-advised constructions. And you lose the middle, keeping only the hyper-partisans and the low-info crowd, both of whom are either incapable or unwilling to unwind any tangles in your presented cords, because they want your words to be true (and in some cases lack the skills to reason).

    • Oh, that’s ridiculous. All the bigger embassy bombings were spun by the incumbent admin for political purposes, especially Beirut. But by the way there is no, zero evidence that the Obama folks departed from Intel briefings in what they briefed. Hadeel Shalchi was in Benghazi that day and she saw anti-film demos. No innocent camera people were put in jail by Obama. Sheesh.

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