Anyone who knows me at all knows that I have an especially soft spot in my heart for the Navy S.E.A.L.S, having spent 16 months of my three years in Iraq living amongst them. And, continuing on, I experienced firsthand what happens when there is an inside job, betrayal at the hands of those in authority, and a resulting countermeasure of ongoing selfless bravery. We had two such events, the first being a “mole” in the nascent Iraqi Special Forces who facilitated the beheading of nearly a dozen of his fellow trainees. The second occurred when one of Saddam’s former officers infiltrated our base and tried to get some of the ISOF to kill American soldiers, and for several days, no soldier was allowed to be anywhere on base without a battle buddy. We as unarmed civilians made sure we were at all times with someone who could protect us, and the offending officer was brought to justice.
As news of what occurred in Benghazi began to come forth in fits and starts back in September, my “antennae” went straight up, curious at the confusing and conflicting accounts, and hoping against hope that the inability to report whether some of those who had died were Marines or S.E.A.L.S was only an indication of journalistic incompetence.
Then we received an email from a friend who, prior to becoming a Christian, was a sniper for the D.E.A., and who still has “friends on the inside.” The account he sent of what actually occurred, weeks before the rest of the media began to “spill the beans,” shed light on something upon which I had come to rely – the passion of S.E.A.L.S to defend and protect.
What we now know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, is that help was desperately needed, help was requested, and help was denied even prior to the September 11 terrorist attack. What we now know is that the attack was in no way precipitated by outrage caused by a stupid movie posted on the ‘net back in June. What we now know is that Tyrone Woods heard what was going down, came to help, saved more than 30 lives, and in the process gave his own. So did Glen Doherty. And, the creepiest of all, in part because of the moral implications, and in part because of the technology that made it possible, President Barack Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton watched it happen in real time.
To pour salt in the wound, at the strange, out of sync ceremony that occurred in the hangar at Andrews AFB, “There you go Joe” (Biden) made a comment to Charles Woods, the father of Ty Woods that was jaw dropping as to its inappropriateness, and Hillary promised Mr. Woods that the filmmaker who had caused all of this would be roundly prosecuted. But what I found the most chilling, and the least surprising, was the fact that the Commander in Chief could not look the grieving father in the eye, and had the handshake of “a cold fish.”
At the very least, the entire scenario should make us cringe, and at the most, wonder if this cover up is an impeachable offense. Only time will tell, but this I know: The S.E.A.L.S will do what they always do, and that is put themselves in harm’s way for people like me, irrespective of who is in the Oval Office.
By: Ali Elizabeth Turner