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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

As the Crisis in Libya Continues, Romney's Floundering Looks Small in Comparison

Posted by on Wed, Sep 12, 2012 at 8:30 AM

On the heels of this terrible news...

The United States ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens, was killed along with three of his staff members in a fiery and furious attack on the American Consulate in Benghazi on Tuesday night by an armed mob angry over a short American-made video mocking Islam’s founding prophet, the White House and Libyan officials said on Wednesday.

In a statement confirming the four fatalities, President Obama said he strongly condemned the killings and had ordered increased security at American diplomatic posts around the world. It was the first death of an American envoy abroad in more than two decades...“This is an attack that should shock the conscience of people of all faiths around the world,” Mrs. Clinton said in a televised statement. “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.”

...Mitt Romney is attacking President Obama for making decisions that were never made:

The Romney campaign drew fire on Wednesday morning for issuing a blistering statement condemning the American embassy in Egypt for speaking against an incendiary anti-Muslim film, even though the embassy made the statement before any attacks had taken place. NBC's Chuck Todd, for instance, called the statement "irresponsible" and a "bad mistake."

Romney accused the Obama White House of "sympathizing" with the attackers last night. This morning, he said the White House had made a "severe miscalculation" in their response, calling it "akin to an apology." Even conservative pundits are telling Romney to shut up, but he keeps barreling on. The responses to his statements are bad and getting worse.

Foreign policy is one of the trickiest paths to navigate if you're running for president against an incumbent. When it comes to foreign policy crises, we tend to rally around the current administration, no matter what their response may be. It seems that most Republicans are standing behind the president for now. But now that Romney is basically calling the White House a bunch of Muslim apologists, he's got a serious challenge.

Of course, Romney's challenge is nothing compared to President Obama's and Secretary Clinton's. At the moment, they're saying that they're going to work with the new Libyan government to find the killers, but it remains to be seen how patient the American people are going to be about this.


Comments (21) RSS

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Theodore Gorath 1
Can they still be called gaffes?

Because at this point, I just think he really is that stupid and unreasonable.

Can it still be a gaffe if you truly mean it and do not know a better way to comport yourself?
Posted by Theodore Gorath on September 12, 2012 at 8:52 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 2
Libya and Egypt are two cuntries in serious flux. One would expect violence to erupt by different factions. A president must be smart and able to see the larger picture. Rmoney is neither of those things.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on September 12, 2012 at 8:55 AM · Report this
Urgutha Forka 3
What is it with conservatives hatred of "apology?"

Do they truly believe foreign policy in today's world can be accomplished entirely with blustering, chest thumping, and cock swinging?

Calculated "apologies" can be immensely more effective than brash, egotistic bellowing.

Conservatives aren't stuck in the 1950's... they're stuck in pre-history.
Posted by Urgutha Forka on September 12, 2012 at 9:03 AM · Report this
Romney is playing his losing hand awfully early.

One can maneuver away from extremism after a primary much easier than in the middle of an election. His “Apologizer & Chief” rhetoric will only appeal to one extreme. This is a Hail Marry end of game move.

Not many people want to follow a leader who will stand by their own non-fact-based decisions no matter what & stack lies so thick a single sound bite couldn’t tear them apart.
Posted by sall on September 12, 2012 at 9:15 AM · Report this
"Do they truly believe foreign policy in today's world can be accomplished entirely with blustering, chest thumping, and cock swinging?"

Which is why they insist on spending so much on our military.
Having the biggest guns and itching to use them means never having to say you're sorry.
Which is also why we only pick on the smaller, weaker countries.
Which is why Iran is so intent upon getting a nuke of their own.
Posted by fairly.unbalanced on September 12, 2012 at 9:22 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 6
Ooops. Countries damnit.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on September 12, 2012 at 9:44 AM · Report this
Fire Aim Ready 7
The US provided $1 billion in military support of Europe's successful effort to overthrow the Gaddafi government, an effort that depended on aligning with Islamic extremists in Libya.

Can you say "blowback"? I knew you could!
Posted by Fire Aim Ready on September 12, 2012 at 9:46 AM · Report this
Max Solomon 8
Willard seems not to understand that Bush was re-elected, in large part, because we were in 2 wars and Americans are a bunch of jingoistic rah-rahs. You can't get to the right of a man who kills muslim insurgents by the score every day, and has the scalps of Bin Laden & Gaddafi to boot.

Way to go, Pastor Terry Asshole Jones.
Posted by Max Solomon on September 12, 2012 at 10:20 AM · Report this
Theodore Gorath 9
@7: Damn straight. There was no violence directed against Americans or American interests when Gaddafi was in charge.

Never. Not once.
Posted by Theodore Gorath on September 12, 2012 at 10:25 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 10
If I was the people who did this, I'd be a lot more scared of what Obama said he'd do than any flip-flop response from Mittens.
Posted by Will in Seattle on September 12, 2012 at 10:49 AM · Report this
thatsnotright 11
I just watched the avaialble trailers for the film "Innocence of Muslims" which is the supposed trigger for these riots in Egypt and Libya. What ever one may think of Islam, this movie stinks and is the dirtiest sort of bigotry. I don't believe that murderous rioting is a justifiable response, but I do beleive that the movie was made as a provocation.
Posted by thatsnotright on September 12, 2012 at 10:52 AM · Report this
Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In 12
@8 Thanks for mentioning the real instigator of this bs, which is a right-wingnut, the kind of lunatic that Romney is working so hard to pander to. If there's an ounce of sanity or reason among conservatives these days, I'd like to see it.
Posted by Some Old Nobodaddy Logged In on September 12, 2012 at 11:06 AM · Report this
treacle 13
@3, Did you watch the Bush II administration at all? O_O

To Paul's blog piece:

"but it remains to be seen how patient the American people are going to be about this."

Uhm, not to sound crass or anything --and condolences to the families of the diplomats who died in a horrible way-- but I don't think the "American people" are going to even remember this next week. They were relatively nameless envoys to a war-torn land. Also, there's only so much justice you can dispense to a fire-toting mob once the smoke has already cleared.

Perhaps we should consider justice be wrought upon the makers of the film --if @11 is right and it's the dirtiest sort of bigotry and was in fact made as deliberate provocation-- then they have blood on their hands too.
Posted by treacle on September 12, 2012 at 11:09 AM · Report this
Theodore Gorath 14
@13: Well, it was partially financed by Terry Jones, as well as being directed by an Israeli who claims that Islam is a "cancer."

So yeah, I am guessing this is exactly what the filmmakers/backers wanted. They are the worst types of people, and deserve nothing but the worst life has to offer.
Posted by Theodore Gorath on September 12, 2012 at 11:23 AM · Report this
I would have to agree with #12. Romney is an automaton whose strings are being jerked by right-wingnuts whose voices seem to speak more loudly to him than the leaders of his own party. He has no sensitivity on a sensitive issue and lies about when the President's comments were made to appeal to the knee-jerk conservatives. The picture of him with a self-satisfied smile as he walked away from the reporters after he made his attack on the President is truly terrifying.
Posted by Concerned for our country on September 12, 2012 at 11:46 AM · Report this
McJulie 16
It was weird. I heard Romney's statement, and he starts out obviously trying to make the kind of statement that he'd make if he were president right now -- he's all dignified and saddened and the amazing part is that he's not actually doing a bad job of it.

Then he takes that right turn into Obama-bashing and any pretense toward statesmanship just vanishes in an instant. He sounds petty, partisan, ignorant... completely unpresidential.
Posted by McJulie on September 12, 2012 at 11:48 AM · Report this
@14: It's becoming apparent that "Sam Becile" doesn't exist under that name, and according to one of the "consultants" on the film is probably not Israeli or Israeli-American. I suspect this "consultant" - a right-wing nutjob in Riverside, CA named Stephen Klein - is about to have himself a chat with the FBI, since he's quoted as saying "we pretty much expected this [i.e. violent action] to happen", and it's looking more and more as if the Bengazi attack was premeditated.
Posted by DonServo on September 12, 2012 at 12:13 PM · Report this
All American adminitrations have been so naive. They've figured that if you remove a dictator's foot from off the people, those people will immediately, or at least eventually, create a democracy. Instead, the Arab Spring is turning into an Islamist Summer. Even the so-called moderate Islamist Muslim Brotherhood's Egypt president has said that women must not expect to be treated equally -- the treatment of women is an indicator of what will come. Romney's an idiot and doesn't understand anything, but various Presidents and the State Department aren't much better. Those who claim that these attackers are not X or Y or Z are simply hoping that they're not. We don't know where this will go, but we can guess.
Posted by sarah70 on September 12, 2012 at 12:46 PM · Report this
keshmeshi 19

All administrations? What about the ones that unapologetically supported dictatorships for years and years?
Posted by keshmeshi on September 12, 2012 at 1:21 PM · Report this
butch18 20
And all this is done in the name of God!
I believe that when all those people who preach hate and intolerance in the name of God meet him or her or what!
God will look them in the eye and say
" YOU did this in my name! what kind of an ass hole are you"!
Posted by butch18 on September 12, 2012 at 1:46 PM · Report this
Of course, we'll never see a discussion of how their sand-nigger-support enabled the murder of Americans in foreign nations. They don't see themselves culpable in the slightest. All they care about is the closing of some shitty sandwich shop and the opening of some shitty coffee shop on the corner.

Stupid self-hating, foreigner-loving, kike liberals.
Posted by Central Scrutinizer on September 12, 2012 at 6:02 PM · Report this

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