This evening I’m choosing to highlight some of what you may not have heard on the evening news. Republicans in Maryland don’t always get a lot of news coverage, but they were handed a golden opportunity for criticism about the Obama Administration and their handling of the Ambassador Chris Stevens murder and other issues around the Middle East.
So let’s look at how some of these challengers are reacting to Middle East tensions, beginning with U.S. Senate hopeful Dan Bongino.
My prayers go out to the families and friends of Ambassador Stevens and the three other Americans who were brutally massacred yesterday in Benghazi. As a Secret Service agent, I saw firsthand the dangers that face our diplomats as they go about the business of spreading the message of freedom and democracy to other nations. I have the greatest respect for these men and women and for those who are called on to protect them. I join all Americans in thanking them for their service to our country.
This tragedy underscores our need for a peace through strength foreign policy, not a chaos through weakness approach. America must forever be vigilant toward the danger posed by those who choose violence over diplomacy, disorder over peace.
That “chaos through weakness” approach seems to be even more apparent as more is learned about the situation. Obviously Dan has a unique perspective on the situation, which is why he was in demand as a news guest after the incident. He was more harsh on Andrew Wilkow’s show on The Blaze’s new cable channel:
Either this was the worst threat assessment done by completely incompetent people or the threat assessment was accurate and was ignored.
Of the Congressional Republican candidates who reacted, some were more brief. For example, Third District candidate Eric Knowles noted on his Facebook page:
Work to preserve our liberties for generations to come – this is the ultimate way we can honor those who lost their lives on this day as well as those who sacrificed so much in the resulting wars.
Also on Facebook, Seventh District aspirant Frank Mirabile took exception to Obama’s statements on the President’s weekly radio address yesterday:
Mr. President where is the issuance of…
“The United States of America WILL NOT tolerate any acts of terrorism issued against American diplomats or those who protect them. Period. We WILL bring upon those who participated in these acts of aggression the true nature of American Justice and Retribution! America will not tolerate terrorist acts of aggression against it’s people.”
Nancy Jacobs, who’s running in the Second District, minced no words: “America needs to be tough.”
As we Americans spent the day reflecting on the horrors of 9/11, a similar incident of mass murder and hate by religious zealots was underway at the U.S. Embassy in Libya. The killing of our Ambassador Christopher Stevens, and three other diplomatic staff by an angry mob in Benghazi is an absolute outrage. Today I feel terrible grief for the families of the victims but also immense anger over the attack.
Our leaders in Washington should be expressing to the world that we will not be terrorized by radical extremists. We cannot afford a mealy mouthed response to this atrocious act. It is critical that America stand strong, shout loud and show, with our actions, it will do everything necessary to protect the safety and security of our people here and overseas. The world must know those who dare to participate in such lawlessness should be aware that the United States has the strength, ability and resolve to fight back if necessary.
It is also critical for America to immediately address with Israeli leadership the continuing threat to Israel by Iraq. Instability in the region is a huge threat to the world and America. Throughout we have stood proud, strong and tough in defense of democracy. We must be ever so clear that America will not start wavering now.
Perhaps it’s fitting that Eighth District hopeful Ken Timmerman, who’s written extensively on the Middle East, also had a diatribe which featured this remark:
It’s time that we face reality: the so-called Arab Spring that the United States aided and abetted has ushered in an Islamist Dark Age descending upon much of the Middle East that endangers Americans, endangers Christians and other religious minorities, and endangers Israel.
It also directly threatens the authentic, pro-freedom forces in these countries that Ambassador Stephens and his colleagues tried bravely to nurture.
Timmerman is one who’s calling for specific action: suspending aid to Libya and other governments in the region until they clean up their acts and bring perpetrators to justice. It’s a start.
The more I hear about how one portion of the media seems to desperately playing defense for their favored candidate, while a collection of foreign sources and domestic alternative media tries to uncover what’s really happened and – more importantly – what led up to it. Missing daily security briefings at a critical foreign policy juncture, as the President has reportedly done, is legitimately a questionable policy issue and Mitt Romney should call President Obama out on it. This point is made by pro-troop group Move America Forward, with spokesman Danny Gonzalez noting:
(MAF) also pointed to the official White House Calendar, which showed no public record of President Obama attending a daily intelligence briefing since September 5th, as further evidence that the administration is not taking foreign policy or national security seriously. Hostile foreign regimes and terrorist groups around the globe have picked up on his nonchalant attitude and have displayed a pattern of further testing his commitment to American national security.
While Romney was condemned in the press for supposedly speaking too soon, it turns out his gut instinct was pretty much on the mark. Did you actually think the mainstream, partisan media would give him a fair shake? Neither did I. And those who were ignored until I mentioned it today finally get a piece of their due as well.