[Secretary of State Leon] Panetta's statement [that "you don't deploy forces into harm's way without knowing what's going on"] only makes sense if there were those in the military or elsewhere who considered or urged deploying forces into harm's way, and that those individuals were overruled because of the lack of real-time information...In an eerie coincidence, as the September 11, 2012, attack in Benghazi was still raging, Vanity Fair posted the following article summary promoting a profile of the president that would appear in the upcoming October issue of the magazine. The summary focused on a parallel situation from more than a year before: President Obama in the White House Situation Room making a life and death decision about an escalating crisis in Libya.
What did President Obama do that evening (apart from spending an hour on the phone with Prime Minister Netanyahu)? What did he know, and what did he decide, and what was the basis for his decisions?
Obama ‘Went Off Road Map’ in Libya Michael Lewis’s new profile of Barack Obama in the October issue of Vanity Fair provides a rare insider look at how the president makes his decisions. The main focus of the profile are the days leading up to his secure of a U.N. resolution to take “all necessary measures” to protect Libyan civilians, and then “use American airpower to destroy Qadaffi’s army.” A source who was in the Situation Room when the decision was being made tells Lewis that Obama “went off the road map,” summarily shooting the two options given to him by the Pentagon: Establish a no-fly zone, which advisers admitted would not end the massacre, or do nothing at all. On why he balked at the idea of not intervening: “That’s not who we are.”
Read it at Vanity Fair September 11, 2012 10:45 PM
|Photo: Mustafa El-Shridi/Reuters|