Being Presidential at The Benghazi Hearing

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton listens to a question as she testifies before the House Select Committee on Benghazi on Capitol Hill in WashingtonLast week I actually listened to the Benghazi hearing. Then, I went watched the fiasco. After eleven hours, I sat for a moment and ponder a most interesting question: “What if the interviewee was either Donald Trump, Ben Carson or Chris Christie?”

Whether you believe Hillary Rodham Clinton or not, commentator Eugene Robinson echoed it correctly when he said Clinton must have been mindful of the old adage that you never interrupt an enemy when he is making a mistake. Clinton was very presidential. I just cannot see any other Republican candidate looking so presidential.

Chris Christie claimed Clinton was “unaccountable” because she left the Benghazi compound’s security arrangements to be handled by lower-ranking professional. Yet “Face the Nation” host John Dickerson noted Christie gave a similar explanation to exonerate himself in the George Washington Bridge scandal.

Overdosing on his Miss World pageant sound bites, Donald Trump claimed he could unify the world …. A pseudonym for “All I want is for world peace.” Ok, actually he said he could unify congress. A former CIA analyst stated, “What was learned was irrelevant. What was relevant wasn’t discussed.

And here’s why I agree.

Rep. Trey Gowdy told Clinton he understood that people in both parties suggest that this investigation was about her; further stating this investigation was about four people who were killed representing our country on foreign soil. That argument comes across condescending ten minutes into the hearing.

For example, while the Benghazi committee has spent $4.7 million for three hearings, the deaths of two-dozen from a bombed a hospital operated by the charity Doctors Without Borders, in Kunduz, Afghanistan appears particularly uninteresting. Congressional leaders have spent little time investigating why some 30 Americans are being held hostage overseas today. The 2009 suicide bombing at Camp Chapman in Afghanistan did not merit this kind of scrutiny. That was when seven Americans working for the CIA were killed when a man who was supposed to be an informant, invited by American agents to be the base, turned out to be a radical jihadi, a suicide bomber who blew himself up.

The hearing only served to embarrass Republican lawmakers in search of a political crusade. In recent days, some prominent Republicans have even admitted as much. The Republicans are expected to issue a report. May it be the final chapter of a wasteful and counterproductive exercise that accomplished nothing.

Thus, I am left with my opening question. Basically, how presidential would Trump, Carson or Christie be were it them?



Categories: Life Lessons

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2 replies

  1. “[Y]ou never interrupt an enemy when he is making a mistake” might be altered slightly to “you never interrupt an enemy when he (or she, in this case) is making an idiot of him (or her) self.” Perhaps not strictly appropriate for a Buddhist, but certainly appropriate for these hearings.

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