Video: “Mr. President … I totally forgive you”

posted at 2:41 pm on October 29, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

The Daily Caller captured an extraordinary moment on Fox News last night, during Geraldo Rivera’s interview of the father of Tyrone Woods, the slain Special Forces security agent who gave his life in defending our consulate in Benghazi and protecting Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, the first US Ambassador murdered in office in 33 years.  Charles Woods claims he is not speaking out from anger; he looks into the camera and tells President Obama, “I totally forgive you” even if Obama is responsible for his son’s death.  However, Woods wants answers as to why the US didn’t respond militarily to an attack on American soil at any time in the seven hours that the attack took place, and asks whether Obama would have delayed a response for better intel if the American soil was located closer to home:

“I was contacted by military personnel yesterday, who told me an interesting fact. And that is any consulate anywhere in the world is American soil,” Woods said. “Any attack on an American consulate is an attack on American soil. There were American citizens that were attacked for seven hours on American soil a couple thousand miles away from Washington, D.C.”

“My question of the president would be this: Your Honor, I respect your office as president. But if this attack on American citizens, on American soil, happened 2,000 miles away from Washington, D.C. — say in Los Angeles or in Seattle — would you have waited seven hours before you sent the first airplane? Would you have waited seven hours until the attack was over? Would you have waited a couple of days until you had all of the videos and all the information before you responded in a responsible military way?” …

“This is about honor, courage and about love for America. And remember this, Mr. President:  My son and the others died heroes and it’s better to die the death of a hero than it is to live the life of a coward. If you are responsible for the death of my son, I forgive you, I love you. I also love America.”

Pete Hegseth, who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, has a few thoughts about the lack of response to the attack as well, and that the data we know now points to a military response ready for nothing more than a green light.  And that, Pete writes, prompts a big question:

More on-the-ground questions continue to emerge (presumably not from the White House for the purposes of glorification). K-Lo’s post last night includes a strong piece of information to consider — the former Navy SEAL on the ground (Tyrone Woods) who was using the infrared laser to “paint the target” (enemy mortar team) was doing so at the risk of exposing himself, which someone with his training would have known. This fact would lead you to believe that there were armed air assets available (AC-130 Gunship or Predator/Reaper drone) in the skies above the consulate and annex. Previous reports have indicated that only a surveillance drone was monitoring the attack, but if that drone was armed, it ups the ante. More than likely — pending more details — Woods was taking the risk to identify himself, in order to identify the enemy target for an immediate air strike. The questions then become — Why didn’t they fire? And who made that call?

Moreover, we know that Woods and his fellow Navy SEAL Glen Doherty were told to “stand down” rather than aid a besieged ambassador. Who gave that order? And why, especially in light of the President’s directive? There’s lots of finger pointing going on, and very few answers. Eventually the buck will stop and the truth will come out — it always does.

Taken together, the events on 9/11 in Libya tragically illustrate this administration’s “Stand Down” foreign policy. Rather than aggressively confront enemies (with the notable exception of bin Laden), we appease them. Rather than call the threat what it is (radical Islamists), we sanitize our enemies or wish them away completely (it was an Internet video, dammit!). And rather than make the tough call to save American lives — including our ambassador’s — we stand down.

These questions deserve answers.  More importantly, these questions deserve asking, but so far few in our national media seem interested in asking them.


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