Tag Archives: Libya

Hero of the Week Award: September 14, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

14 Sep

Hero of the Week

This week’s tragic events in Benghazi, Libya once again demonstrated the kind of powerful leadership we have in the Obama administration. With exceedingly difficult and painful news to deliver, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivered a strong, passionate statement to the press after it was learned that Ambassador Chris Stevens and three aides were killed. She struck the perfect balance of respect for the dead, determination for justice, and a call for clear heads to prevail in the face of confusing and tragic events. She and the President avoided the opportunity for political grandstanding in a tough election year, focusing instead on providing the kind of leadership and clear foreign policy our country needs.

This is an attack that should shock the conscience of people of all faiths around the world. We condemn in the strongest terms this senseless act of violence, and we send our prayers to the families, friends, and colleagues of those we’ve lost. […] Today, many Americans are asking – indeed, I asked myself – how could this happen? How could this happen in a country we helped liberate, in a city we helped save from destruction? This question reflects just how complicated and, at times, how confounding the world can be.But we must be clear-eyed, even in our grief. This was an attack by a small and savage group – not the people or Government of Libya.

It was the kind of statement that serves as a model and should be used to teach public speaking and diplomacy. How good was it? Sen. John McCain (R – Angry Lawn), hardly a fan of anyone named Clinton or Obama, had this to say:

Just watched an excellent and moving statement by Sec. Clinton — just the right message and tone.

Here is wishing Secretary of State Clinton a very speedy recovery from her blood clots and our best wishes for a Happy New Year!

 

What has the world come to when I agree with Sen. McCain. You can watch the whole statement on YouTube.

Honorable mention this week goes to Australian football player Jake Ball who became one of the rare public sports figures to come out as gay. Despite his reservations and fear of being removed from the team, he decided that someone needed to be the first. To his pleasant surprise, his team has been very supportive and the macho homophobic language in the locker room has reduced to zero.

Mitt Romney: Exploiting Death For Political Gain

12 Sep

I’m Mitt Romney, and I approved this exploitative lie…for now.

I am disgusted and revolted by Romney’s behavior in the wake of the loss of four lives in Benghazi, Libya. U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed by a terrorist attack on the consulate in Benghazi. This attack, like a protest yesterday in Cairo, was apparently prompted by a YouTube video defaming the prophet Mohammed — a video made by infamous Quran burner and homophobic activist Terry Jones. State Department officials responded to the Cairo protests condemning violence and religious intolerance.

Romney, in typical form, dived in without the facts. Showing no presidential character whatsoever, he politicized the deaths of four Americans in a baseless attack on the President.

I’m outraged by the attacks on American diplomatic missions in Libya and Egypt and by the death of an American consulate worker in Benghazi. It’s disgraceful that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.

Bad form! Bad form Mr. Romney. Have you no decency? Have you no respect for the families of those that have died? Your pathological narcissism knows no bounds! Even John Boehner avoided making a political statement over these tragic deaths. What does that say about how vile your behavior is?

Of course, your statement is also blatantly false, but your allergy to the truth is by now legendary. As a candidate, you have held half a dozen positions on Libya, a near record even for your dissembling campaign. Oh, the famous Romney shuffle: jump the gun, avoid the facts, blame the President, change your position, hold a press conference, find a flunky to issue a rebuttal to yourself, avoid the facts, blame the President. Dancing like that every day, it’s amazing you can still find time to put your feet in your mouth.

Wednesday Word of the Week, May 4

4 May

An eye for an eye and we all go blind.

Today’s word is: RETRIBUTION.

the dispensing or receiving of reward or punishment especially in the hereafter – Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary

So Osama bin Laden is dead. That is a simple fact and the complex culmination of thirty years of terrorist activity, initially funded by the Reagan administration as part of the Cold War opposition to Soviet forces in Afghanistan.

The reactions are mixed, ranging from the jubilant to the regretful. In all cases, however, there is a strong theme of “he had it coming.” Is this the tone we want to set as a nation?

The September 11 attacks were horrific acts of terrorism against this country. They were, in all likelihood, at least partly planned by bin Laden. That being the case, his apprehension, trial, and appropriate punishment was a desirable goal. A certain inarticulate rage at the man as a symbol of the attacks also makes sense, as an individual or collective response. It does not make sense as a matter of policy.

Military action has many viable justifications; it is also often messy and uncertain. But as the capture of Saddam Hussein proved, it can result in the capture – rather than the death – of a target. This action resulted (perhaps necessarily, perhaps not) in the death of the quarry, forever ending the opportunity to even attempt to resolve any open questions about the organization he led. Sadly, the death has resulted in President Obama practicing his “Mission Accomplished” moment, however more articulate he may have been.

The cause of securing our country is not complete. But tonight, we are once again reminded that America can do whatever we set our mind to. That is the story of our history…

This is our aspiration as a nation? The death of one man, however notorious? The villain is dead, and we have exacted our VENGEANCE.

punishment inflicted in retaliation for an injury or offense – Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary

For one day, perhaps one week, many in our nation will celebrate this vengeance, feeling justified. Ding dong, the terrorist is dead. Let there be a joyous celebration!

But we exacted our vengeance on Saddam Hussein and are still embroiled in Iraq. There is no reason to believe that this death will expedite our extrication from Afghanistan. And what of Libya? Perhaps we can host a tailgater when Gaddafi goes the way of the other miscreants, but what else will we gain?

The terrorists despise us more for killing their leaders. The military is spread just as thin, fighting what is now an even more ambiguous war. We’ve satisfied our blood lust and expiated a bit of unresolved national sorrow and rage. What of the greatness that we aspire to? How have we demonstrated that?

A quotation from Martin Luther King, Jr. has permeated the Internet since Sunday:

Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.

It is often paired (frequently without attribution) with an introduction supposedly tweeted by Jessica Dovey:

I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy.

These are aspirations. These are noble sentiments. Death, especially violent death, is not a cause for celebration. A truly noble people may thirst for vengeance, but collectively, with the wisdom of history and combined conscience, they will seek instead,

the principle or ideal of just dealing or right action; conformity to this principle or ideal – Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary

JUSTICE

P.S. – For an excellent overview of the killing, our national reaction, and the misleading media narrative, I recommend Glenn Greenwald’s excellent pieces at Salon.com. As always, he asks hard questions and only provides answers of which he can be certain.

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