Oh snap. Rachel. Rachel Maddow.
Keep up the good work, Rachel, even when it’s not at all what you intended.
In the wake of last week’s deadly attack against the US consulate in Benghazi, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow helpfully provided Mitt Romney with plenty of damning information for use against President Obama in their upcoming debates.
Turns out there were warning signs going back months that the situation in Benghazi was rapidly deteriorating and the Obama administration did little to protect Ambassador Chris Stevens and the consulate.
On her cable show Thursday night, Maddow described how Stevens, an Arabic speaker and “longtime student of Libya” who “understood the country well,” traveled to the coastal city of Derna in 2008. Stevens wrote a classified memo, later published by WikiLeaks, warning of growing al Qaeda militancy in Derna, “right there next to Benghazi,” Maddow said.
Stevens’ cable to Washington “actually used the Bruce Willis movie ‘Die Hard’ as an analogy for understanding how intense the local attitudes were there about jihad,” Maddow said. Not only that, al Qaeda documents seized by American troops in Iraq revealed that more holy warriors were sent to Iraq from Derna “than any other place in the entire Arab world,” Maddow said.
Maddow also pointed out how CNN reported this past June that al Qaeda sent one of its top operatives in Pakistan to Derna during the uprising against Gaddafi in early 2011 “to capitalize on that town’s legendary militancy.” (Yes — “legendary”. She says things like that).
“The assignment was to set Derna up just outside of Benghazi as essentially a new, mini-Afghanistan,” Maddow said, “a new hub for al Qaeda, with multiple training camps there for al Qaeda fighters. That was last year and ultimately this murder of an American ambassador did not happen in Tripoli, didn’t happen way over on the western part of the country, in the capital where the US has its embassy and which is guarded by US Marines and has full security, it didn’t happen there. It happened when the ambassador was in this lightly fortified consulate building, over in the eastern part of the country, in a city that’s basically right next to what al Qaeda is trying to build as a new hub for terrorist training.”