BENGHAZI, BENGHAZI, BENGHAZI, 9/11, 9/11, CONGRESS, CONGRESS, SHORTSIGHTEDNESS. DARRELL ISSA
Darrell Issa : Congressman California’s 49th District
Congress in the form of Darrell Izza, Chairman Of The House Oversight And Government Reform Committee is trying to find out who failed to lock the barn door after the horse was gone in reference to the Benghazi attack where four Americans were killed including Ambassador Stevens. Izza is a self made millionaire and a Republican who when unsuccessful in his 1998 run against Barbara Boxer for Senator in California ran for Congress. He was successful in gaining a seat in Congress in 2000 and has been there ever since. He is generally classified as conservative and has voted with the House Republicans more than 94% of the time.
The State Department’s budget requests for security were cut twice by House Republicans in 2011 and 2012 by approximately 128 million and 212 million respectively. This was at a time when the Arab Spring which began in 2010 caused unrest throughout the Middle East including Libya which was engaged in a bloody civil war for most of 2011. It was difficult to determine what the various factions that conducted the uprising against Gaddafi represented: secular democrats, Islamic moderate democrats , fundamentalist Islamic theocrats, or those who wanted an Al Qaeda affiliated dictatorship according to Sharia law.
Congressional Republicans cut the State Department Security budget anyway even though Secretary of State Clinton publicly protested the cuts and spoke directly with Speaker of the House John Boehner to avoid the cuts. The budget cuts went through. Now Mr. Izza is trying to blame the State Department for an inadequate security response and mis-characterization of the assault as a demonstration against an anti-Islamic film that got out of hand instead of a planned terrorist attack.
Mr. Izza is using the hearing as a political smear tactic against the Obama Administration and Secretary Clinton who may be a candidate for President in 2016.
This is not the first time that Congress has inadequately protected the American people. Before 9/11 Congress turned airport screening over to the Airlines, at their objection, who had been deregulated and were in a economic battle with each other for passengers. This resulted in less income and inadequate screening.
Europe long before recognized that the Airlines were a terrorist target and established a professional police like screening system funded by the state. That was one of the reasons the terrorist involved in 9/11 so easily commandeered the passenger jets they used to bring down the Towers and damage the Pentagon.
So Mr. Izza is looking in all the wrong places for culpability for Benghazi when he should investigate himself and his colleges for their inadequacies and motives in cutting security budgets in turbulent times to save dollars instead of American lives for political reasons
Take Away: Congress is a power struggle between Republicans and Democrats and even within those two groups there are factional disputes. The welfare of the public is second or even third in this struggle over patronage, judicial appointments and who gets to spend the government’s money on what and where. Republicans generally speaking represent the money class from whom they receive campaign contributions. The Democrats represent the working class, the poor and unemployed. There are always exceptions to this general rule. It is not uncommon for middle class or working class people to vote Republican and for wealthy people to support the Democrats.
However Congress must create issues like Benghazi and now the IRS dust up to appear as if they are doing something in controlling the Executive branch. However the real issue is the fight over power and who controls what.