Tag Archives: Al-Quaeda

13 Hours movie review, and my top 25 posts about the Benghazi cover-up

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi
13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi

I went to see the movie 13 hours on Saturday and found that it dovetailed nicely with all the stories that I had written on this blog about the events in Libya and the subsequent lies and cover-up by the Obama administration.

I was asked to review the movie and post all of the links to the previous stories by my friends Kevin and McKenzie, so that’s what I’m going to do.

So, I am a huge war movie fan, and I read military biography and military history. The most frustrating thing in war movies and books about war is that the go too far down to the level of details, without providing the context. Very frustrating. I don’t want movies to be too much about action and fancy animations. I want to learn something about the strategy and tactics in play. And 13 Hours does not disappoint.

You get a lot of exposure to the real world of espionage, black ops and drones for one thing. They show you the insides of a real CIA station in Libya, tell how it was acquired, and they show what goes on there. You also get to see what diplomats do, and who is responsible for keeping them safe. The battle scenes feature a ton of top down / map-like shots. There are shots of maps with the buildings and who will be deployed where, and for what reason.

Everything is called by its real name, e.g. – a technical is not called “a pickup truck with a heavy weapon”, it’s called a “technical”. An AC-130 gunship is not “air support” it’s an AC-130 gunship. A Predator drone is not a drone, it’s a Predator. An F-16 is not a “fighter jet” it’s an F-16. A QRF is not a “Quick Reaction Force”, it’s a QRF. Too bad for you if you don’t read enough to know what these things are and how they work. Everyone should be interested in these things, because these things matter for national security and foreign policy.

And the actual scenes of shooting is not mindless gunplay like in “Inception” or “The Matrix” – they try to show you the ranges, the cover, the concealment, the lines of sight, suppression, etc. There is realistic confusion about fog of war (FOW) and identifaction: friend of foe (IFF). The fact that this is a true story where the people involved all collaborated on the book and on the movie makes it really something if you like realism. This is how State Department and CIA work in other countries really goes down. If you liked “Act of Valor”, “American Sniper”, “Blackhawk Down”, “Lone Survivor” or the battle scenes in “Rules of Engagement”, then you need to see this movie.

Hillary Clinton look bored about the deaths of 4 Americans who asked for her help
Hillary Clinton look bored about the deaths of 4 Americans who asked for her help

What difference at this point does it make?

All right, now the politics was kept to a minimum in the movie, but I was asked to list out all the posts that I wrote about this.

The list of posts goes back in time from October 22, 2015 to September 13th, 2012 (the day after the terrorist attack):

  1. Hillary Clinton’s State Department ignored 600+ requests for more security in Benghazi
  2. Why did Hillary Clinton blame the Benghazi terrorist attack on an “Internet video”?
  3. All evidence points to Hillary Clinton as source of internet video lie
  4. E-mails: Hillary Clinton’s top aides knew in minutes that Benghazi was a terrorist attack
  5. Clinton confidants were present to “separate” damaging documents before Benghazi probe
  6. E-mails: Susan Rice prepped to lie about Benghazi by White House
  7. Transcripts show that top U.S. military officials briefed Obama on Benghazi terrorist attack
  8. Benghazi liar Susan Rice to be appointed National Security Adviser by grateful Obama
  9. Released e-mails show that State Department edited terrorism out of Benghazi talking points
  10. Obama: editing of talking points to cover-up of Benghazi terrorist attack is a “sideshow”
  11. BBC News covers whistle-blower testimony: “After Benghazi revelations, heads will roll”
  12. What we learned from the Benghazi whistle-blowers
  13. Whistle-blower: State Department cut counterterrorism experts out of Benghazi decisions
  14. Official: We knew Benghazi was a terrorist attack “from the get-go”
  15. Benghazi whistle-blower: assets to protect the embassy were available
  16. Obama administration refused to engage top counter-terrorism resource for Benghazi
  17. Classified cable sent on August 16th warned of vulnerability of Benghazi consulate
  18. Requests for support from Benghazi defenders denied by the Obama administration
  19. White House told that terrorists took credit for Benghazi attack within two hours
  20. Unmanned drone observed Benghazi attack, no help sent for 7 hours
  21. CIA in Libya reported that Benghazi was a terrorist attack in first 24 hours
  22. Obama’s Watergate: State Department falsifies Obama’s Benghazi cover-up
  23. Benghazi attack was a massive failure of Obama’s security policy
  24. UK Independent: “America ‘was warned of embassy attack but did nothing’”
  25. Al Qaeda chief suspect in Libya terrorist attack, Obama flies to Las Vegas fundraiser

And of course the famous Hillary Clinton meltdown when questions about why she blamed a terrorist attack on a YouTube video, and why there was a stand down order to prevent help from being sent.

Hillary also lied to the families of the victims, telling the families that she blamed a YouTube video for protests that got out of hand.

To make a long story short, the Benghazi terrorist attack occurred two months before the 2012 re-election of Barack Obama. And that’s why Obama, Hillary Clinton and Susan Rice lied to the American people about it – they did not want the American people to know how poorly their Libya intervention had worked out. An intervention that was strongly supported by easily-influenced moderate, establishment Republicans such as Marco Rubio, by the way. Everyone who voted for the Obama administration in the 2012 elections voted against the 4 Americans who were killed in that terrorist attack. As Secretary of State, Clinton did not prioritize national security. Her focus was on promoting abortion and gay rights abroad.

Searching by tag name

If you want to search the blog by tag, just add tag/<tagName> to the end of the web page address (URL). The list above was generated with: “https://winteryknight.com/tag/Benghazi“. Use a dash for spaces in the tagName. For my other series of posts about Democrat scandals, such as Fast and Furious, just change the tag name: “https://winteryknight.com/tag/Fast-and-Furious“. You can do the same thing with the e-mail scandal, the Clinton Foundation scandal, and all the other scandals of this corrupt Democrat administration.

Former Ron Paul campaign official explains Ron Paul’s views on foreign policy

From Right Wing News, an exclusive interview with a Ron Paul insider who was working for Ron Paul from 1987-2003.

Excerpt:

Ron Paul was opposed to the War in Afghanistan, and to any military reaction to the attacks of 9/11.

He did not want to vote for the resolution. He immediately stated to us staffers, me in particular, that Bush/Cheney were going to use the attacks as a precursor for “invading” Iraq. He engaged in conspiracy theories including perhaps the attacks were coordinated with the CIA, and that the Bush administration might have known about the attacks ahead of time. He expressed no sympathies whatsoever for those who died on 9/11, and pretty much forbade us staffers from engaging in any sort of memorial expressions, or openly asserting pro-military statements in support of the Bush administration.

On the eve of the vote, Ron Paul was still telling us staffers that he was planning to vote “No,” on the resolution, and to be prepared for a seriously negative reaction in the District. Jackie Gloor and I, along with quiet nods of agreement from the other staffers in the District, declared our intentions to Tom Lizardo, our Chief of Staff, and to each other, that if Ron voted No, we would immediately resign.

Ron was “under the spell” of left-anarchist and Lew Rockwell associate Joe Becker at the time, who was our legislative director. Norm Singleton, another Lew Rockwell fanatic agreed with Joe. All other staffers were against Ron, Joe and Norm on this, including Lizardo. At the very last minute Ron switched his stance and voted “Yay,” much to the great relief of Jackie and I. He never explained why, but I strongly suspected that he realized it would have been political suicide; that staunchly conservative Victoria would revolt, and the Republicans there would ensure that he would not receive the nomination for the seat in 2002. Also, as much as I like to think that it was my yelling and screaming at Ron, that I would publicly resign if he voted “No,” I suspect it had a lot more to do with Jackie’s threat, for she WAS Victoria. And if Jackie bolted, all of the Victoria conservatives would immediately turn on Ron, and it wouldn’t be pretty.

If you take anything from this lengthy statement, I would hope that it is this final story about the Afghanistan vote, that the liberal media chooses to completely ignore, because it doesn’t fit their template, is what you will report.

If Ron Paul should be slammed for anything, it’s not some silly remarks he’s made in the past in his Newsletters. It’s over his simply outrageously horrendous views on foreign policy, Israel, and national security for the United States. His near No vote on Afghanistan. That is the big scandal. And that is what should be given 100 times more attention from the liberal media, than this Newsletter deal.

I think Paul’s comments on World War 2, which I didn’t excerpt here, are pretty disturbing as well. I guess I just don’t believe that he knows enough about national security and counter-terrorism to be President. If I asked him questions like “who is FARC?” or “who is the Quds force?” or “How is Iran working with the Mexican drug cartels?” or “How is Iran working with Hugo Chavez?” then all I’ll get in response is Libertarian rhetoric.

Ron Paul doesn’t know a thing about national security or Islamic terrorism, he can’t quote any specifics at all about who terrorists are, what they’ve done, what they want to do, etc.. It’s like asking a witch doctor to explain modern medicine. You’ll only get conspiracy theories and unverifiable assertions – never any details. Everything Ron Paul asserts about how unilateral disarming would do this, or unilateral withdrawal would do that is really nothing more than his uninformed personal ideology. If you asked him to prove out any of his views on foreign policy, you would just get more excitable old crank rhetoric – devoid of data and history.

The best way to engage a libertarian who thinks that Ron Paul conspiracy theory diplomacy would work is to bring up a specific example when actual counter-terrorism produced results. For example, when KSM was waterboarded and gave up intelligence on the 9/11-style attack on Los Angeles, or when enhanced interrogation techniques led to the location of Osama Bin Laden. You can also point out how Clinton’s policies of appeasement emboldened terrorists to commit actual terrorist attacks against American assets. And how Bush’s invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan did actually dissuade terrorist attacks from occurring. And how large-scale attacks resumed under Obama, e.g. – the NYC subway bomb, the NYC Times Square bomb, the attempted assassination of the Saudi ambassador in New York, etc., to name a few. This is kryptonite to a fever-swamp libertarian who forms his foreign policy reading dead economists from the 1800s – prior to the invention of nuclear weapons.

Like this:

How to defeat Ron Paul in 2012
How to defeat Ron Paul in 2012

We can’t put someone like Ron Paul in charge of national security. It would be like putting a witch doctor in as the Surgeon General. Conspiracy theories are not good foreign policy. The antidote is to talk about the way things work in the real world.

Libertarian: a person who thinks waterboarding a terrorist to prevent a 9/11 attack is “cruel”, but who thinks aborting 50 million unborn babies since 1973 is “just”. Just understand what libertarianism is, and the scope in which it is useful, and don’t apply it to areas where it doesn’t apply.

CIA Director Leon Panetta confirms that waterboarding led to Osama Bin Laden

CIA Director Leon Panetta confirms that waterboarding / enhanced interrogation techniques led to Osama Bin Laden, in this MSNBC interview by Brian Williams.

Excerpt:

Brian Williams: I’d like to ask you about the sourcing on the intel that ultimately led to this successful attack. Can you confirm that it was as a result of waterboarding that we learned what we needed to learn to go after Bin Laden?

Leon Panetta: You know, Brian, in the intelligence business you work from a lot of sources of information, and that was true here. We had a multiple series of sources that provided information with regards to this situation. Clearly, some of it came from detainees and the interrogation of detainees, but we also had information from other sources as well. So it’s a little difficult to say it was due just to one source of information that we got.

Williams: Turned around the other way, are you denying that waterboarding was in part among the tactics used to extract the intelligence that led to this successful mission?

Panetta: No, I think some of the detainees clearly were — you know, they used these enhanced interrogation techniques against some of these detainees. But I’m also saying that the debate about whether we would have gotten the same information through other approaches I think is always going to be an open question.

Williams: So, final point, one final time: enhanced interrogation techniques, which has always been kind of a handy euphemism in these post-9/11 years, that includes waterboarding.

Panetta: That’s correct.

This is the waterboarding that Obama opposed. Obama opposed enhanced interrogations. Obama opposed military tribunals. Obama opposed CIA prisons. Obama opposed Guantanamo Bay. Obama opposes counter-terrorism in general.

And don’t forget how waterboarding prevented a similar 9/11-style attack on Los Angeles.

Excerpt:

The Central Intelligence Agency told CNSNews.com today that it stands by the assertion made in a May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that the use of “enhanced techniques” of interrogation on al Qaeda leader Khalid Sheik Mohammed (KSM) — including the use of waterboarding — caused KSM to reveal information that allowed the U.S. government to thwart a planned attack on Los Angeles.

Before he was waterboarded, when KSM was asked about planned attacks on the United States, he ominously told his CIA interrogators, “Soon, you will know.”

According to the previously classified May 30, 2005 Justice Department memo that was released by President Barack Obama last week, the thwarted attack — which KSM called the “Second Wave”– planned “ ‘to use East Asian operatives to crash a hijacked airliner into’ a building in Los Angeles.”

KSM was the mastermind of the first “hijacked-airliner” attacks on the United States, which struck the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Northern Virginia on Sept. 11, 2001.

After KSM was captured by the United States, he was not initially cooperative with CIA interrogators.  Nor was another top al Qaeda leader named Zubaydah.  KSM, Zubaydah, and a third terrorist named Nashiri were the only three persons ever subjected to waterboarding by the CIA.

Waterboarding works. It is not torture. We waterboard all our our naval aviators as part of their SERE training.

But do you know what is torture? Partial-birth abortion. We don’t partial-birth abort our naval aviators as part of their SERE training – yet the same people who oppose waterboarding support partial-birth abortion.

Related posts

Ground Zero: Why truth matters for preventing another 9/11-style attack

Philosopher Michael J. Murray wrote an interesting research paper that I think is relevant to the 10th anniversary of the attack on the World Trade Center by Islamic terrorists. The title of the paper is “Who’s Afraid of Religion?”, and he begins by discussing why it is that people are so hesitant to talk about religion.

He writes:

…we would be perfectly happy to have a discussion of claims like…”Mahayana Buddhism emerged in the first century BCE with the appearance of the Mahayana sutras.” … It is OK to speak of religion… as a historical phenomenon or a socio-cultural influence. It is something altogether different to discuss religious commitments that one owns. That is the sort of religion that troubles us.

And:

…think about the last time you heard a devoutly religious person argue, on explicitly religious grounds, that gay marriage should be banned, or that intelligent design should be taught in the public school biology curriculum, or that abortion is murder and thus should be outlawed.

Why are religious commitments difficult to discuss? Well, I think most people think that religious convictions, no matter what the religion, are not rooted in logic or evidence. That’s the perception of religion that many people have. Even religious people have this idea that religion, no matter which religion it is, is not really something that people have arrived at by a careful process of investigation and study. Many people believe that religions are just stories that religious people grow up with and they “believe” those stories in order to get along with the families or their cultures.

The problem is that people often act in public on the basis of these religious convictions. Sometimes, they just vote in laws and policies that we all have to live by. But other times, they take over airplanes loaded with innocent people and fly them into buildings. What are we supposed to do when people act on convictions that are not rooted in logic or evidence? How should we respond to that?

So what’s the answer?

In his paper, Murray  argues that the evil actions of people acting on religion can be opposed by falsifying the underlying religion using reason and evidence. He points out that refuting of a religion is possible because religions all make testable claims. So, if we are afraid of the excesses of a dangerous religion, they we should argue that its testable claims are false.There is no reason to be afraid of expressions of religious belief when you are free to argue against the testable truth claims of that religion

Here are just a couple different claims made by different religions that can be opposed using widely-accepted facts:

  • Hinduism is committed to an eternally oscillating model of the universe, but this model has been falsified by the measurements from 1998 that showed that the mass-density of the universe was not sufficient to halt the expansion of the universe. That means the universe will expand forever, and there are no cycles of creation and destruction, as required by Hinduism.
  • According to the Secular Humanist Manifesto, atheism is committed to an eternally existing universe, (See the first item: “Religious humanists regard the universe as self-existing and not created.”). If something non-material brought all existing matter into being, that would be a supernatural cause, and atheists deny that anything supernatural exists. However,  eternal models of the universe have been falsified by the Big Bang cosmology, which requires that all the matter in the universe come into being out of nothing. The Big Bang has been confirmed by experimental evidence such as redshift measurements, light element abundances and the cosmic microwave background radiation.

So it’s quite easy to argue against an entire world religions like Hinduism and Atheism simply by using universally accepted facts.

How is it relevant to the 9/11 tragedy?

On the anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy, it might be a good idea for us to consider whether there is any similar evidence, accepted by virtually everyone, that falsifies Islam – the religion that motivated the 9/11 terrorists.

And it turns out that there is. The Islamic Scriptures contain the following verse that Muslims must accept in order to be Muslims.

Surah 4:157 from Quran.com:

And [for] their saying, “Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the messenger of Allah .” And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but [another] was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain.

They think that Jesus didn’t actually die – that he was never crucified by the Romans.

Now the interesting thing about this is that there is no non-Muslim historian who believes that Surah 4:157 is true. The crucifixion of Jesus is a fact that is acknowledged by atheist historians, Jewish historians, Christian historians, Buddhist historians, Hindu historians, and every other non-Muslim historian who has ever existed. There is not one shred of evidence that the Quran’s view, which is recorded hundreds of years after the death of Jesus, should supercede the attestation of Jesus’ death found in earlier Christian and non-Christian sources.

Eminent secular scholar E.P. Sanders of Duke University lists the facts about Jesus that the broad consensus of historians consider to be almost indisputable.

In his book, “Jesus and Judaism” (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1985)., he lists the following almost indisputable facts about Jesus on p. 11:

1. Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist.

2. Jesus was a Galilean who preached and healed.

3. Jesus called disciples and spoke of there being twelve.

4. Jesus confined his activity to Israel.

5. Jesus engaged in a controversy about the temple.

6. Jesus was crucified outside of Jerusalem by the Roman authorities.

7. After his death Jesus’ followers continued as an identifiable movement.

8. At least some Jews persecuted at least parts of the new movement . . . .

That book won the annual Grawemeyer Award in 1990 – a prize given to the best book in religion published that year.

The death of Jesus is corroborated in every source inside the Bible and outside the Bible, up until the Quran is written about 600 years after the death/non-death is supposed to have taken place.

Watch it disputed in debates

The best way to assess this testable claim made by Islam is by seeing how well Muslim scholars can defend this claim in formal, academic debates with non-Muslim scholars.

Here is a debate on the question “Was Jesus crucified?”:

And here’s a debate on the resurrection of Jesus featuring a Muslim scholar, which has a substantial discussion of the crucifixion:

So it turns out that there is a way for us to make sure that another terrorist attack like 9/11 never happens, quite apart from national security or foreign policy concerns. And the way that we do that is by arguing against religions and ideologies like Islam that can cause harm, using logic and evidence. There is no reason to treat religious ideologies- and non-religious ideologies – as being somehow above inquiry and investigation.

Obama vows to continue prosecuting counter-terrorism experts

Consider this Wall Street Journal article by former Attorney General Michael Mukasey.

Excerpt:

Consider how the intelligence that led to bin Laden came to hand. It began with a disclosure from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM), who broke like a dam under the pressure of harsh interrogation techniques that included waterboarding. He loosed a torrent of information — including eventually the nickname of a trusted courier of bin Laden. That regimen of harsh interrogation was used on KSM after another detainee, Abu Zubaydeh, was subjected to the same techniques. When he broke, he said that he and other members of al-Qaeda were obligated to resist only until they could no longer do so, at which point it became permissible for them to yield. “Do this for all the brothers,” he advised his interrogators. . . .

The harsh techniques themselves were used selectively against only a small number of hard-core prisoners who successfully resisted other forms of interrogation, and then only with the explicit authorization of the director of the CIA. Of the thousands of unlawful combatants captured by the U.S., fewer than 100 were detained and questioned in the CIA program. Of those, fewer than one-third were subjected to any of these techniques.

[…]President Obama ran for election on the promise to do away with these techniques even before he became aware, if he ever did, of what they were. Days after taking office, he directed that the CIA interrogation program be done away with entirely and that interrogation be limited to the techniques set forth in the Army Field Manual, a document designed for use by even the least experienced troops. It’s available on the Internet and used by terrorists as a training manual for resisting interrogation.

Jennifer Rubin, writing in the left-wing Washington Post comments on the Mukasey column.

Excerpt:

In addition to eliminating the very techniques that allowed us to track down and kill bin Laden, Obama has permitted the Justice Department to reopen investigation of previously cleared CIA operatives. Mukasey explains: “ I say ‘reopening’ advisedly because those investigations had all been formally closed by the end of 2007, with detailed memoranda prepared by career Justice Department prosecutors explaining why no charges were warranted. Attorney General Eric Holder conceded that he had ordered the investigations reopened in September 2009 without reading those memoranda. The investigations have now dragged on for years with prosecutors chasing allegations down rabbit holes, with the CIA along with the rest of the intelligence community left demoralized.

That’s right – Barack Obama has intimidated the entire intelligence community with his prosecution of CIA operatives who were judged innocent. Does his decision to prosecute CIA counter-terrorism experts make us safer from terrorist attacks?

And just look at how he treated the 9/11 widow Debra Burlingame. He literally turned his back on her just because she asked him why he is continuing to prosecute the CIA interrogators for doing their jobs. That’s the real Barack Obama. He can’t take a question, he can’t handle criticism. He has no civility for people who disagree with him.

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