President Trump's swift response to the attack on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad had Americans comparing and contrasting his leadership with that of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Clinton headed the State Department during the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya in 2012 and was condemned for failing to act as terrorists stormed the compound and killed four Americans, including ambassador Chris Stevens. A group of U.S. contractors were itching to fight but were told to stand down. As we know, they did not follow those orders and fought valiantly to protect our personnel. If that wasn't bad enough, members of the Obama administration also tried to tell us this was not a premeditated terror attack.
It was a different scenario this week. When the team at the U.S. embassy in Iraq needed emergency assistance, President Donald Trump immediately agreed to send military reinforcements.
Marines were sent from neighboring Kuwait to strengthen the embassy’s security, and the Pentagon said it would deploy an infantry battalion of about 750 soldiers to the region. The unit, from the 82nd Airborne Division in Fort Bragg, N.C., was expected to deploy to military bases, likely in Kuwait, and remain on standby, officials said. Additional U.S. forces were preparing to deploy over the next several days, the Pentagon said. (Wall Street Journal)
It wasn't long before the supporters and members of Kataib Hezbollah who had terrorized those inside the embassy retreated.
Iran killed an American contractor, wounding many. We strongly responded, and always will. Now Iran is orchestrating an attack on the U.S. Embassy in Iraq. They will be held fully responsible. In addition, we expect Iraq to use its forces to protect the Embassy, and so notified!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 31, 2019
Astonishingly, American politics has become so nasty and so partisan, that some people, at least judging by their rhetoric, wanted Baghdad to be "Trump's Benghazi." One of those critics was MSNBC host Joy Reid. She was surprised that the White House had released a new statement about the transcripts related to his impeachment inquiry while the president's own Benghazi was occurring.
As Trump's Benghazi unfolds in Iraq... https://t.co/X8FsJpt6Au— Joy Reid (@JoyAnnReid) December 31, 2019
What was she thinking, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) wondered.
What’s wrong with you? Is partisan hatred really that deep? We root for American soldiers, not against them. https://t.co/VOKsxWtS5f— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) January 1, 2020
He wasn't the only Republican lawmaker who said shame on those who are hoping Trump gets his own Benghazi-like scandal. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) told press this week that the decision making he saw from Trump on Iraq convinced him that there will be "no Benghazis" under his watch.
"President Trump, unlike President Obama, will hold you accountable for threats against Americans and hit you where it hurts the most," Sen. Graham said in his warning to Iran. "Choose your battles wisely."
There will be no Benghazi sequels today or any other day under the Trump administration.— Lee Zeldin (@RepLeeZeldin) December 31, 2019
If that disappoints you, check yourself.