Bob Barr

Consider the August 20, 1998 cruise missile attack ordered by then-President Bill Clinton on the al-Shifa pharmaceutical plant in Khartoum, Sudan. The Administration claimed erroneously the plant was targeted because it had links to al Qaeda, and was being used to manufacture ingredients for VX nerve gas. More than just the embarrassment and human tragedy of attacking a pharmaceutical plant that produced life-saving medicine, the mistaken operation attack revealed to the world that the Clinton Administration’s Department of Defense was either incompetent in not possessing sufficient intelligence to distinguish between a civilian pharmaceutical plant and a terrorist operation; or – just as damning – it had good intelligence but chose to ignore it. In either event, the botched operation did not go unnoticed by al-Qaeda and others.

The Obama Administration’s frequent obstruction of, and disdain for Benghazi investigations, echoed by Democrats in Congress and liberals in the mainstream media, serves to hamper our ability to take steps to avoid a repeat of such a tragedy.

Amazingly -- and sadly -- the same series of tragic mistakes made leading to, during, and after the Benghazi Bungle occurred 33 years before in Iran. What was it that George Santayana warned us – “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it?”

The special House panel to investigate Benghazi has a crucial mission to obtain the truth, and set in motion steps to ensure the safety of American personnel and assets overseas. However, to do so it must eschew any political overtones that could jeopardize the integrity and efficacy of the investigation. Democrats will look for any opportunity to undermine the investigation, and spin their findings to protect Obama and Mrs. Clinton.

President Obama, and advisors like Vietor, Clinton, and Susan Rice, can continue to dismiss their roles in the Benghazi attack; but failing to hold anyone accountable -- including themselves -- and continuing to stymie investigations, sends a clear message to terrorists that our government cares more about the public image of its decision-makers than defending against and preventing future attacks. It is a message that invites future attacks.

So yes, Dude, it matters.

Bob Barr

Bob Barr represented Georgia’s 7th district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1995 -2003 and as U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia from 1986-1990.