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Acts of War

Posted by Larry Doyle on September 12, 2012 9:05 AM |

We live in a very dangerous and risk-filled world. We received fresh evidence of that with developments throughout the Middle East and northern Africa over the last 24 hours.

Strained relations with our supposed closest ally in the region are more than enough to occupy our attention. The fact that our embassy in Cairo, Egypt and our consulate in Benghazi, Libya were attacked and our ambassador to Libya was murdered is a sobering dose of reality as to how the United States is viewed by many in this part of the world.

While cooler and calmer heads hopefully will prevail during this period of stress, let’s make no mistake, the attack upon our embassies and the murder of our ambassador, Chris Stevens, are acts of war against our nation. Do you think that all eyes around the world are focused on how we respond? No doubt. 

The British-based periodical The Telegraph poses that very question this morning in writing, U.S. Consulate Attack in Libya; Death of U.S. Ambassador Would Be Act of War,

Not only did they choose a crucial stage of the US election campaign, but the assault took place on the 11th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on September 11.

As such, President Barack Obama will come under overwhelming pressure to respond when he wakes in Washington this morning. Put bluntly, the destruction of diplomatic premises resulting in the murder of an ambassador would amount to an act of war.

When the British embassy in Tehran was attacked last November, the mob ransacked and pillaged, but refrained from physically harming any personnel. Nonetheless, London responded by expelling every Iranian diplomat and downgrading bilateral ties to the lowest possible level.

Given that America’s most senior representative in Libya appears to have been killed – with some reports suggesting that three other staff also died – Mr Obama’s response will have to be far tougher.

The markets remain remarkably calm this morning as they continue to operate under the massive anesthetic provided by the Federal Reserve and likely the ECB as well. That said, the world as a whole is faced not only with enormous economic risks but with heightened political and military risks as well. Not that the overall level of interest rates nor the slope of our Treasury yield curve are able to accurately reflect those risks.

Whatever happened to peace through strength, first, last, and always?

Let us send our thoughts and prayers to the family of Ambassador Stevens and the other American citizens who lost their lives overnight.

Thoughts, comments, and constructive criticism encouraged and always appreciated.

Navigate accordingly and be very careful out there both in the markets and in your travels.

Larry Doyle

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I have no affiliation or business interest with any entity referenced in this commentary. The opinions expressed are my own. I am a proponent of real transparency within our markets so that investor confidence and investor protection can be achieved.

  • Tim

    What exactly did the embassy in Cairo have to say about the attack? Did it effectively apologize to those in Egypt supposedly offended by the movie Innocence of Muslims?

  • Paul

    You think this is mere coincidence that these attacks occurred on the anniversary of September 11th?

    Come on.

  • Peter S.

    WSJ: The film’s 52-year-old writer, director and producer, Sam Bacile, said that he wanted to showcase his view of Islam as a hateful religion. “Islam is a cancer,” he said in a telephone interview from his home. “The movie is a political movie. It’s not a religious movie.”

    I am going to suggest that Mr. Bacile should be concerned with his own cancer.

    For as long as I have lived, fanatical Muslims sole purpose for living has been to facilitate the eradication of all Jews. And for that same period of time, fanatical Jews sole purpose for living has been to facilitate the eradication of all Muslims.

    Hate begets hate, violence begets violence – the fanatic’s thirst will never be quenched. There is no border in this insidious war in the minds of the intolerant– bombs can be lobbed from anywhere.

    God bless Ambassador Stevens and his family.

  • jason h

    We have been in a perpetual state of war since nearly 2001, I don’t see how today is any different (aside from the specific tragedy of the deaths of these individuals).

  • LD: Recommended

    I strongly recommend readers review the comment put out by No Quarter’s Larry Johnson, Obama Bows to Extremism

    The attacks on the US diplomats and US facilities in Egypt and Libya is a complete and total failure of U.S. foreign policy. The blame for this ultimately rests with Barack Obama, who has indulged the naive fantasy that the Arab spring is a harbinger of democracy in the the Middle East.

    Well, you saw “Arab democracy” on display yesterday in Cairo and Benghazi. It has been 33 years since a U.S. Ambassador was killed in the line of duty. Way to go Barack. You are one experienced foreign policy maven.

    Blame also lies with Hillary Clinton. No Embassy, except for the Embassy in Kabul, has a U.S. military force at hand that can come to the rescue in a timely fashion. We must rely on the host nation to ensure the safety and security of our diplomats. Both Egyptian and Libyan officials are responsible for allowing these attacks on our people and property.

    Mitt Romney was correct in voicing outrage at the cowardly surrender monkeys in the Obama Administration, who allowed the following “apology” to go out:

    The Embassy of the United States in Cairo condemns the continuing efforts by misguided individuals to hurt the religious feelings of Muslims – as we condemn efforts to offend believers of all religions. Today, the 11th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, Americans are honoring our patriots and those who serve our nation as the fitting response to the enemies of democracy. Respect for religious beliefs is a cornerstone of American democracy. We firmly reject the actions by those who abuse the universal right of free speech to hurt the religious beliefs of others

    No religion has the right to murder others in the name of their god. Yet, this is the hallmark of Islam.

    How should we respond? Cut off Egypt’s access to the billions of US tax payer dollars and close our Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Harsh? Yes. But we must have a strong response.

  • JP

    Dear Mr. Doyle,

    This crime is certainly an outrage. The murder of Mr. Stevens is disturbing, sad, and wasteful. May his family be comforted in this time.

    I must say that I have been expecting such things for a very long time. Our foreign policies continue to come home to roost. If you think drones, wars, sanctions, threats, invasions, computer invasions with worms, kidnapping, torture, meddling in other countries’ sovereign rights to self-determination, arming insurgents, and so on, ad nauseum, are not acts of war which we have been committing for decades upon decades, you are not living in a reasonable world.

    If you travel outside of the US you will begin to hear just how much the rest of the world feels about the US’ policies and their results. Actually, it is quite shocking and disturbing. But if you put yourself in “other’s” shoes it is very easy to understand. We are the greatest source of world terrorism that has ever been. Israel is second. Half the reason people hate us is our unflagging support with Israel, who most certainly are exporters of crimes against humanity, besides the samesuch crimes committed upon the Palestinians, which the US flatly refuses to acknowledge.

    Waving the “Act of War” flag is the constant theme to justify our wishful punishments of others. We are broke, sir, and wars and mounted military assaults cost us huge borrowed money and lives of our service people, whom we have betrayed by calling them to action for no good-faith purpose.

    Blessed are the peacemakers. And thank you for listening and thinking seriously about this.

    • LD

      JP,

      Thanks for writing. I do not pretend to know all that goes on in the world nor do I think we even know the half of what truly goes on out there. I will readily admit that our nation is far from perfect. I also know that people from all walks of life and from all parts of the world want to come to America to live. Why? Freedom.

      I view the attacks yesterday as attacks on the principles of freedom which we cherish. Is this to say that we are perfect? Far from it.

      However, if and when we give ground when it comes to protecting our freedom and our love of liberty, then the world as a whole suffers.

      No need to apologize or excuse ourselves for standing up for freedom and liberty.

    • Mark Mensack

      JP,
      Well said!

  • fred

    LD,

    I smell a rat!

    Al Qaeda leadership has been decapitated and defanged but this does not stop Al Quaeda’s deep seated hatred toward the U.S. or their desire to incite the U.S. to take aggressive retaliatory action in an effort to unite the global Muslim community against the U.S.

    Maybe we are witnessing the next battleground of Al Queda’s choice, the media and the internet. Has anyone done a backround check on Mr. Bacile

    • LD

      Fred,

      Did we witness the equivalent of workplace violence or a protest demonstration that got out of hand due to the trailer of the video clip Innocence of Muslims? Or is this all a continuation of the war propagated by radicals who would like nothing more than to see Israel eliminated and the US driven out of the Middle East? An interesting analysis here:

      LIBYA: The true story of the attack in Benghazi, Libya is far worse than anything that has been reported in the mainstream media. According to highly trusted sources, US Ambassador Christopher Stevens was targeted by al Qaeda of the Magreb, lured to Benghazi by al Qaeda operatives in the Libyan Security Forces, and kidnapped in the course of a diversionary attack on the consulate. He was missing for eight hours, during which time he was beaten and brutalized before he was murdered, not unlike the way that Muammar Ghadhaffi was murdered. Photographs are too graphic to reproduce here.

      Extremely sensitive documents were taken from the Consulate in Benghazi, including lists of operatives and locations of safe houses in Libya. One of these so-called “safe house” in Benghazi, where the staff had retreated, came under sustained mortar fire during the attack. Other such refuges across the country are no longer considered to be “safe”, because of the capture of the documents. It is now assumed that a breach in security led to the attack, which was carried out on the eleventh anniversary of 9/11.

      According to senior diplomatic sources, the US State Department received credible intelligence of the planned operation 48 hours before the attack on the Consulate in Benghazi, and the embassy in Cairo.They were warned that American missions might be targeted, but no warnings were given for diplomats to go on high alert and put their facilities and personnel in “lockdown”, under which movement is severely restricted.

      This evening, House Intelligence Committee requested a briefing on the Libyan situation from the state Department. The request was denied.

      EGYPT: According to our sources, the State Department was advised by the Egyptian Army that violent demonstrations were being planned 48 hours prior to the start of the attacks. The only precaution taken, however, was to send staff in Cairo home early. An initial report from a news source mentioned that the staff had gone home early, but no further reference to that was mentioned in later reports.

      NEWS ABOUT THE VIDEO THAT SUPPOSEDLY IGNITED THE FIRE (IT DIDN’T!): The Video was hoax. Only a trailer was produced. Based on intelligence now available it appears the man who was responsible for it, who was previously convicted for fraud, was attempting to scam money from the Coptic Christian Community by raising money for a film that he had no intention of producing. He claimed to be an Israeli, but turned out to be Egyptian. He said that he had raised money from 100 Jewish contributors, also a lie.

      WATCH FOR IT: Spreading demonstrations in other countries throughout the Middle East, and in the Muslim nations of Pakistan and Indonesia.

      IN OTHER NEWS: Earlier tonight, three Hamas operatives were apprehended at an Army weapons smuggling checkpoint near Puebla, Mexico. One of these is considered to be a high value target. The have been turned over to the US Army and are now in detention at Fort Bliss.

      Libya, Egypt, Hamas in Mexico

  • fred

    Good stuff, LD. Al Queda, alive and well. Did we set the war on terror back by taking out Bin Laden?

    We Americans like things to be neat, quick and easy because it strokes our ego. We throw alot of money at a problem and think in terms of days and months whereas our enemies are often thinking in terms of years and centuries.

    • LD

      Bingo. I believe we have spectacular intelligence professionals but I am less confident about our pols. I do not believe the American public and our media have the resolve on these issues/problems.

      On these topics, you really need to read former NSA and CIA operative Larry Johnson’s work at No Quarter. LJ is the reason for Sense on Cents as he invited me to write at NQ back in fall of 2008. My writing there compelled me to launch SoC.

      He is unbelievably well plugged in.






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