Posts Tagged 'ambassador'

A Web of Lies

It was a movie that caused the protests by the “folks” outside the US Consulate in Libya, and the protests that allowed miscellaneous evil doers who just happened to be walking by … at 9:30 in the evening — armed with mortars and RPGs, which are easily found throughout Libya — to take advantage of the moment, scale the consulate’s walls and kill the American Ambassador who was working there at the time. That this occurred on 9/11 was purely coincidental.

So says Susan Rice, US Ambassador to the UN. I’m not sure why the US Ambassador to the UN was selected to be the spokesperson in this matter. What does her job have to do with Libya, or the consulate or other matters of State? Shouldn’t it be some State Department person, someone in the chain of command relative to embassies and consulates that was chosen to make the  statement? 

No matter, that is what she’s said, as reported by Fox News today. 

In the same article, Fox also reported that an intelligence source on the ground claimed there was no protest outside the consulate at all that night, despite our own government’s insistence that there was.

“There was no protest and the attacks were not spontaneous,” the source said, adding the attack “was planned and had nothing to do with the movie.” According to this source, the attack came without warning, with firing originated in two separate locations.

This corroborates an earlier report from McClatchy of an unnamed Libyan security guard who alleged the same thing. “There wasn’t a single ant outside,” he said.

The Obama Administration rejects both sources, as well as the Libyan president’s claim that this was a planned out attack, a view the Obama administration says is not consistent with “the consensus view of the U.S. intelligence community,” which has been investigating the incident.

“He doesn’t have the information we have,” the U.S. official said of Libyan President Mohammed el-Megarif. “”He doesn’t have the (data) collection potential that we have.”

Except… recently we were told that the situation in Benghazi had been turned over to the FBI to investigate, because it was now regarded as a crime scene. There could be no further talk on the matter beyond whatever the FBI was willing to reveal — not what happened, not who was involved,  not the condition of Ambassador Stevens’ body… nothing until the Justice Department’s investigation was completed.

Unfortunately, the FBI agents haven’t even gotten to Benghazi yet, because it was decided the area was too unstable for them to enter.

So… who is investigating? And how can the US say that the President of Libya, who is in Libya, doesn’t have the same “data collection potential that we have,” when our agents haven’t even gotten there yet?.

“A consensus view of our intelligence community”  just means the majority opinion, not eyewitness testimony or any kind of hard facts. And majority opinion isn’t always right. In fact, I’d say it’s rarely right.

And how is our “data collection potential”  relevant to all this?  “Potential” means we haven’t collected it yet, otherwise it would be real not potential.

So really, all the administration has said in defense of  it’s theory is that they’ve voted on the best guesses of what really happened, and since the US’s ability to gather data is so much superior to Libya’s, eventually the data we’re going to collect will support the majority-opinion guess.

Which means, the US official really didn’t say anything.

So why did I write an entire blog post on this? Because the dissembling fascinates me, especially when I notice it. I grew up with the notion that those in authority don’t lie.  Perhaps bend the truth. Or leave certain things out. But not outright lie.

Even having blogged about the doctrine of taqiyya, I still find it hard to believe that people actually do it. But in a society like ours, where we don’t believe in such things, where a man’s word was once his bond, and honesty is still mostly considered a virtue, it’s harder still.

I know all politicians lie on some level or other. I know it. But I think I still don’t totally believe it. Otherwise why would this stuff surprise me?

Maybe because it’s so obvious and how can they think we all won’t see it? Do they think we won’t care. (Granted a far too many of our citizens don’t seem to.)  And yet the media just reports it all as if it’s truth, as if it’s not the least bit inconsistent, and certainly not that it’s reprehensible.

(The only thing they seem to think is reprehensible is that pathetic little movie trailer that’s supposedly started all this.)

It seems like it should be against the law for government officials to lie like this, so easily, so blatantly…  Because the result for me  right now is that I have no idea what is truth and what is lie. Are the Intelligence “Source” on the ground and the unnamed Libyan security guard lying?  Could be.

The President of Libya? Yeah, he could be lying, too.

The US administration official? The US ambassador to the UN? Obviously. Everyone’s clearly scrambling to cover their rears…  It would be funny were it to show up in some comedy movie.

But it’s not a movie.

How can we, as supposed-to-be-informed citizens ever know what’s actually going on, when everyone seems to be lying? All the time. When one lie doesn’t work, they just float another… Where is that all going to lead? 

I don’t have answers for these questions, but I do believe that this is one more thread in the unraveling of a culture once based on Biblical standards, now steadily heading down the road to destruction.

“In the last days,  difficult times shall come. For men shall be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.” ~ 2 Ti 3:1-4

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A Book I Am Supposed to Read

Some time ago, maybe March or April (I’ve forgotten)  I reserved a book from the Library. I’d seen the title somewhere — I’ve forgotten that now, too. I’m thinking maybe PowerLine Blog. They often do reviews of current books, and I recall thinking this book might be interesting. It’s a #1 bestseller from this year, and had a gazillion holds on it, which is why I didn’t get it until last week.

It’s called In the Garden of Beasts, by Erik Larson, and it’s about an American family in Hitler’s Berlin. I thought it was fiction, and by the time I got the notice that it had arrived at the library and was waiting for me to pick it up, I had no idea why I’d even reserved it. Did I really have time to read it? After all, I’ve just come to the conclusion that I need to start pruning things out of my slate of activities to give more time to writing.  Well I’d give it a look at least.

Shortly after that notice arrived came another telling me the Brad Thor novel I’d reserved had also arrived. I’d just finished rereading The Last Patriot (my previously posted review of it is here) and was eager to start the next one in the series. I figured that would likely be the first of the two books I’d read. So Friday I picked up both of them around lunch time.

Also at this time, as many of you know, I’m in the middle of writing a novel about an embassy and Ambassadors to an evil empire. Lately, though, I’ve been wondering if I can really make this analogy work, and have been seeking the Lord’s counsel on this matter repeatedly.  I’ve also been listening to Pastor John Farley’s series on discernment in the spiritual life, particularly about how people and organizations who are energized by evil are compelled to hide it, thus they do everything they can to appear good, right down to being in the church itself. The Bible says they may even come as pastors (disguised as “ministers of righteousness”) teaching false doctrine to the unwary (2 Co 11). It’s been a fascinating study.

Anyway, I got home with my books and started looking at In the Garden of Beasts.

It’s not fiction, it’s nonfiction that reads like fiction. So says the material on the cover flaps. It’s about a real man and his daughter. The man, William E. Dodd becomes America’s first AMBASSADOR(!) to Hitler, “in a year that proved to be a turning point in history!”  What? An ambassador? Did I know this when I reserved it? I might have, but I had completely forgotten if I had.

He’s there with his wife, son and 24-year-old daughter Martha. The tale is told from his and his daughter’s perspectives. It’s a story about an ambassador and embassies and all the things they do. I found out in the very first chapter that he was born October 21, 1869. The date I had picked up the book and was examining it? Friday, October 21, 2011.  Weird.

It’s about “Hitler’s ascent from chancellor to absolute tyrant.”  Which is more or less the story path my villain is to take in Sky.

More… the prologue from the author reads like an illustration of recent Bible lessons. Here’s an excerpt:

I have always wondered what it would have been like for an outsider to have witnessed firsthand the gathering dark of Hitler’s rule. How did the city look, what did one hear, see, and smell, and how did diplomats and other visitors interpret the events occurring around them? Hindsight tells us that during that fragile time, the course of history could so easily have changed. Why, then, did no one change it? Why did it take so long to recognize the real danger posed by Hitler and his regime?

<snip>

Every morning [my two main protagonists] moved through a city hung with immense banners of red, white and black; they sat at the same outdoor cafés as did the lean, black-suited members of Hitler’s SS, and now and then they also caught sight of Hitler himself… But they also walked each day past homes with balconies lush with red geraniums; they shopped in the city’s vast department stores, held tea parties, and breathed deep the spring fragrances of the Tiergarten, Berlin’s main park. They knew Goebbels and Göring as social acquaintances with whom they dined, danced and joked — until, as their first year reached its end, an event occurred that proved to be one of the most significant in revealing the true character of Hitler…

<snip>

There are no heroes here… but there are glimmers of heroism and people who behave with unexpected grace. Always there is nuance, albeit sometimes of a disturbing nature. That’s the trouble with nonfiction. One has to put aside what we all know — now — to be true, and try instead to accompany my two innocents through the world as they experienced it.

These are complicated people moving through a complicated time, before the monsters declared their true nature. “

Could it be any clearer that I was supposed to read this book?

Yes.

After looking through it and reading a couple of chapters and marveling at all the above, I picked up the Brad Thor book, just for a peek. This is a dangerous practice that all too often leads to six or seven hour reading marathons as I delude myself with the assurance that I’ll read just one more chapter and then I’ll put it down. Besides, I’d already read its first chapter at the end of the Thor book I’d just finished and I wanted to find out… Wait… what’s this after page 6? Someone’s ripped out page 7/8?  And here’s another:  page 51/52, also missing. And 53/54 practically gone as well. I could just go ahead and read it, but I’ll be frank. I want to read ALL the pages of the book as it was written and the very idea of just skipping over them grates.

Better to bring it back and get a new one and not let someone else get this rude surprise. So I took the Thor book back, the person at the library threw it away, took it out of their catalogue and reserved a new book for me. Temptation removed.  “Read this one now,” God says to me, in reference to In the Garden of Beasts.

Very well then. I will. And I have started it. It is fascinating, definitely “addictively readable.” I’m learning many things. One that stood out: they didn’t call it a swastika at the embassy, but the Hakenkreuz or “broken cross.”


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