Leah Barkoukis

Before the September 11th attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi, which left four Americans dead, there were more than 230 security incidents between June 2011 and July 2012. After the October 2011 rebellion that overthrew Qaddafi, which ended his four-decade long authoritarian rule over the country, Libya became a security vacuum -- a problem “much bigger than a few rogue militants" and one that Amb. Stevens discussed in his personal journal found at the site. In it he talked about the security threats in the country - particularly in Benghazi - and the rise of Islamic extremism, the growing presence of al-Qaeda in Libya and that he believed he was on an al-Qaeda hit list.

As the events leading up to the attack in Libya came to light we learned that despite the tenuous situation in post-Qaddafi Libya, “the State Department did not include Libya on a list of dangerous postings that are high priority for extra security resources.” We also know that requests were made for additional security but that the State Department denied those requests (an issue Joe Biden lied about during the debate). 

To make matters worse, it seems the State Department put green energy investments ahead of embassy and personnel security in dangerous countries. Investors.com has the details:

What Biden was denying was pointed out by Eric Nordstrom during his testimony before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform last Wednesday. Nordstrom, a regional security officer of the U.S. Mission to Libya from September 2011 to July 2012, said that, among other things, he was told in a phone call in July that the deployment of the site security team, a 16-member American military unit based in Tripoli, could not be prolonged.

According to Nordstrom, the State Department not only refused his requests for greater security, but also actually reduced the number of Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) agents assigned to foreign service officers based in Libya. Security was left to one DSS agent, four armed members of the 17th of February Martyrs Brigade and unarmed Libyan contractors employed by the British-based Blue Mountain Group.

In a May 3, 2012, email on which Ambassador Stevens was copied, the State Department denied a request by a group of Special Forces assigned to protect the U.S. Embassy in Libya to continue their use of a DC-3 airplane for security operations throughout the country.

And now for the even more disturbing part about where the Obama administration placed their priorities:

Four days after the use of an ancient DC-3, along with other security requests, was being denied, on May 7, 2012, the State Department authorized the U.S. Embassy in Vienna to purchase a $108,000 electric-vehicle charging station for the embassy motor pool's new Chevrolet Volts.

As Rep. Mike Kelly points out in a Washington Times op-ed, the purchase was a part of the State Department's "Energy Efficiency Sweep of Europe" initiative, which included hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars on green program expenditures at various U.S. embassies.

At a May 10 gala held at the U.S. Embassy in Vienna, the ambassador showcased his new Volts and other green investments as part of the U.S. government's commitment to "climate change solutions." The event posting on the embassy website read: "Celebrating the Greening of the Embassy."

As Katie pointed out earlier this week, the Obama administration has a “laser-like” focus on climate change as it is, but this revelation is truly unbelievable.

 


Leah Barkoukis

Leah Barkoukis is the Managing Editor at Townhall Magazine.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography