'Your papers, please' must never be heard in America
Independent voices from the TWT Communities
The tragedy of Benghazi, where a U.S. ambassador and three other Americans were killed, seemed a cut-and-dried story in the days after a mob attacked the State Department's mission in eastern Libya. Today, the public knows that those early administration pronouncements were false.
The dam seems to be breaking on the nearly eight-month-long cover-up concerning the deadly jihadist attack on Americans and their facilities in Benghazi, Libya.
PResident Obama last year counted on a quick ouster of Syrian President Bashar Assad — an outcome that seems less certain today as the White House searches for another strategy that might give weapons to rebels.
The administration continues to tie itself in knots to avoid offending Muslims, but offers no such courtesy to Christians. The latest example of official intolerance is the blocking of access on military bases to the Southern Baptists' website because it contains "hostile content."
The military's health care system known as Tricare is in need of a major overhaul, according to news articles.
President Obama is backtracking from his campaign promise that "I don't think now is the time" for another round of military base closures across the country.
Two female Marine lieutenants have failed in their bid to complete the Corps' grueling, all-male Infantry Officer Course (IOC).
The Obama administration has made no effort to dispute reports that the U.S. is providing secret military training to Syria's opposition rebels and continues to favor vague rhetoric over specifics about its policy regarding the Middle Eastern nation — particularly on the question of whether to arm rebels.
Most countries try to hide their nuclear-weapons programs. When caught building a reactor, they claim it's for electric power. They disguise missile tests as satellite launches. When they actually test a functional bomb, they argue it's for self-defense.
Three months after former Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta denied him the Medal of Honor, Marine Sgt. Rafael Peralta's congressional backers have started a new effort to have him awarded the nation's top military honor.
Before stepping down from his post last month as secretary of defense, Leon E. Panetta announced the creation of a new medal -- the Distinguished Warfare Medal -- to be given to drone pilots and other cyberwarriors for "flying" missions from the cool confines of locations such as Luke Air Force Base in Nevada.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered a review of a new medal for drone pilots and cyberwarriors that has angered combat veterans for its ranking higher than the Bronze Star and Purple Heart.
Book 15 of Ovid's Metamorphoses contains a little synopsis of his epic, and of his Pythagorean philosophy: "Nothing in all the world remains unchanged. All things are in a state of flux, all shapes receive a changing nature. Time itself glides on with constant motion, ever as a flowing river. Neither river nor the fleeting hour can stop its constant course. But, as each wave drives on a wave, as each is pressed by that which follows, and must press on that before it, so the moments fly, and others follow, so they are renewed. The moment which moved on before is past, and that which was not, now exists in time, and every one comes, goes, and is replaced."
One of the hopeful outcomes of the Senate confirmation hearings for John Brennan to be director of the Central Intelligence Agency and Chuck Hagel to be the secretary of Defense was to gain some concrete answers to the Benghazi tragedy. So far, though, no additional useful information has been released. Further, the testimony of former Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Martin Dempsey on Feb. 7 before the Senate Armed Services Committee only raised more questions. The cloud of a cover-up continues.
One of the last acts of Leon E. Panetta as secretary of defense was to create a new medal to be awarded to those who direct the military's lethal drones in strikes against terrorists ("Pentagon uproar over Panetta's hero medals for drone operators, cybersleuths," Web, Feb. 15). Identification badges or emblems for specific kinds of work are normal for the military and recognition of the special skills involved in piloting the drones is certainly worthwhile.
"I firmly believe that the Department of Defense and the U.S. armed forces did all we could do in the response to the attacks in Benghazi," Mr. Panetta said.
Even if he could get F-16s or AC-130 gunships over the city, he said, he had no intelligence on targets and had no communication link to those in the annex.