samedi 20 octobre 2012

wasn’t so successful

DebatesUnpacking Tuesday Night’s Libya ‘Moment’
By Michael Crowley | @CrowleyTIME | October 17, 2012 |
Bruce Bennett / Getty Images
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks as U.S.
President Barack Obama listens during a town hall style
debate at Hofstra University October 16, 2012 in Hempstead,
New York. Perhaps the most dramatic moment of Tuesday night’
s debate was the tense exchange over how Barack Obama first
described the September 11 attack on the U.S. consulate that
led to the deaths of four Americans, including U.S.
Ambassador Chris Stevens. The Romney campaign charges that
the White House covered up evidence that the attack was a
premeditated action by an organized jihadist group with al
Qaeda ties–as opposed to a spontaneous anti-American protest
inspired by a video mocking the prophet Muhamad that turned
vicious. Republicans say this cover-up is designed to protect
Obama’s narrative that he has overseen al Qaeda’s virtual
destruction. As Romney foreign policy advisor Richard
Williamson said on Fox News, the Benghazi horror is
“evidence that his so-called success in the war on terror
wasn’t so successful.”
It’s hard to deny a certain mystery in the administration’s
descriptions of the attack. Intelligence is certainly
imperfect and subject to revision, but Obama officials did
cling rather stubbornly to the idea that the video was
principally to blame–that the compound assault was, at
worst, an opportunistic piggypacking off an anti-video
protest–even as evidence mounted that it was not. This left
Mitt Romney with a potentially winning argument going into
last night’s debate: Is the Obama administration shading the
facts to downplay a real and growing terror threat to
(MORE: What Happened at the Second Presidential Debate)
Unfortunately for Romney, he botched it. When the moment
came, Romney pinned everything on Obama’s language in the
Rose Garden the day after the attack. And although Romney had
a larger point, he overreached on the specific one. Here’s
the exchange, with non-substantive edits for length and
bolding for emphasis: