Lost in all the "fog of war," as Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton called it, that is still rising like smoke from the burned and looted U.S. Consulate in Benghazi is an even more glaring global catastrophe caused by the Obama administration.
Everyone, even The New York Times, is finally talking about what a scandal it is that the administration ignored stark warnings and failed to protect U.S. interests and people abroad. Then, after terror struck and our ambassador was assassinated, they spun and lied and concocted every excuse imaginable to blame everyone else for the travesty that they alone should have prevented.
President Obama's desperate re-election campaign even went so far as to blame Mitt Romney for making it such a big issue.
Uh, here's a little quiz from history. In 1914, there was an assassination in Bosnia, of a government official named Franz Ferdinand. What happened? Answer: A little skirmish we call World War I. This is gravely serious stuff going on right now and the fact that the Obama campaign trivializes it as if it were just some kind of political banter is truly terrifying.
The whole mess has become this administration's Hurricane Katrina — that singular event crystalizing the belief that they are incompetent and disconnected. And once the mood of voters turns putrid, it cannot turn back. It only metastasizes into other campaigns and very well could spark a landslide political shift.
Yet still being overlooked is the diabolical hand the Obama administration directly played in causing the global rioting and dozens of deaths around the world in the week after Benghazi.
The attack occurred on the night of Sept. 11, the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. Immediately, the administration denied that it was carried out by terrorists. They even denied it was premeditated or in any way an event they might have foreseen or could have prevented.
Instead, they chose to blame it squarely on a trailer for an obscure unmade movie that was supposed to depict Muhammad in an unfavorable light. They lumped it in with what had been a fairly isolated protest outside the U.S. Embassy in Cairo earlier that day.
News reports at the time revealed many of the protesters had not even seen the clip but embassy staffers in Cairo chose to highlight the video by condemning the film's creator and accusing him of "abuse" of free speech.
After the long-planned terrorist attack in Libya later that night, the White House seized on the day's protest in Egypt and blamed the attack on protesters decrying a film that still had been seen by virtually no one.
In the days that followed, every entity of the federal government went full tilt blaming the movie, including outing the name and address of the filmmaker living in California.
"We reject all efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others," President Obama said from the Rose Garden.
"This is not a case of protests directed at the United States writ large or at U.S. policy," White House spokesman Jay Carney said. "This is in response to a video that is offensive to Muslims."
With every utterance and every story, the Internet clip that virtually no one anywhere in the world had previously seen, went viral. Further spreading the word, U.S. embassies around the globe began issuing warnings of violence in the belief that if Libyan Muslims took exception to this movie, so would Muslims everywhere.
By week's end, the self-fulfilling prophecy had, not surprisingly, come bloody true. News of the film had gone global and with it a mob's rage in Tunisia, Sudan, Nigeria, Syria, Lebanon, Israel, India and across the continents.
People were killed, embassies were burned, private businesses with any association to America were destroyed. All because the Obama administration needed a handy scapegoat and found one.
• Charles Hurt can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.