The House of Representatives' Oversight Committee hearings about the September 2012 attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya have concluded. Four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens, were killed in the September 11, 2012 attack.
Supporters of Barack Obama and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton say that the hearings, led by Republican Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), were nothing more than a partisan attempt to smear the current president and a likely Democratic contender in the 2016 election.
Whether you agree with that or not, here are three reasons why Benghazi still matters to all Americans.
1. We still don't know what really happened.
The Benghazi attack marked the first time in "more than three decades" that a U.S ambassador was killed in the field. Yet after these hearings and the State Department's own "accountability review," we still don't know why the consulate was so poorly protected and why the military didn't or couldn't respond in a timely fashion. Pleading incompetence or "the fog of war" isn't an answer.
2. U.S. officials keep attacking free speech as the cause of the attack.
Even after it became clear that the YouTube video "The Innocence of Muslims" had nothing to do with the Benghazi attack, Hillary Clinton invoked it as the cause of the attack at a memorial service for the slain Americans. And President Obama told the United Nations that everyone should condemn "those who slander the Prophet of Islam."
3. We still don't have a foreign policy in the Middle East—or anywhere else.
How does the murder of an ambassador to a country we helped liberate reflect on the way in which we got involved in Libya: President Obama dispatched forces without consulting Congress. As U.S. involvment in Syria and elsewhere heats up, the absolute lack of a coherent – much less constitutional—foreign policy will only lead to more tragedies both in the Middle East and throughout the world.
About 2.15 minutes. Written and narrated by Nick Gillespie. Produced by Meredith Bragg.
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