Will Liberal Interventionists Ever Admit They Were Wrong?

by lizard

Steven Sotloff is the second American journalist to face the device he once aimed—a camera—before having his head severed from his body. As our media pick a part his narrative like vultures before they move on to the next carcass, something caught my attention. Sotloff was one of the first reporters, after the attack in Benghazi, to bring actual first-hand accounts of what happened. This from Mother Jones:

For this TIME article, Sotloff—who covered Libya extensively for the magazine—interviewed Libyan security guards present when the US consulate in Benghazi was attacked. The result is a vivid, meticulous timeline of the events of September 11, 2012.

The well-coordinated assault on the American consulate in Benghazi (or maybe, more accurately, the CIA-run weapons trafficking hub) stills fuels the fever dreams of some conservatives on Capitol Hill. I think Benghazi is worthy of continued attention because I suspect it shows a rift between the CIA and the Obama administration. Susan Rice, at the time, was sent out on the Sunday circuit with false information she was subsequently skewered over.

But who wants to talk about Benghazi and the situation in Libya? Certainly not the formerly yapping R2P interventionists who made absurd claims about how “humanitarian” airstrikes were needed to stop an impending genocide. Now, in the failed state NATO created, even Tripoli has been taken over:

A particular feature of the occupation of Tripoli by Libya Dawn, the newest of the Middle East’s self-proclaimed revolutionary movements, is the focus on residents from the wrong tribe.

The city was captured after a five week battle, involving heavy and indiscriminate artillery bombardments between Libya Dawn and tribal fighters from Zintan, Warshafan and Warfallah. Now residents whose family names indicate membership of those tribes are being rounded-up, whatever their politics, however tenuous their connection with those tribes.

“It happened to a neighbour in another street a few nights ago,” says the student. “They stopped him at a stop light and saw his name. He was beaten and they took him in his own car to his house and broke [destroyed] it.”

He is not the only one. Libya’s Grand Mufti, Sheikh Sadik Al-Ghariani, its highest spiritual authority, broadcasting messages of support from a location in the UK, urged Libya Dawn to take a “firm hand” in their newly acquired city, and militias appear to have taken the message to heart.

By day, columns of smoke rise from houses of government supporters set alight, with the Libya Herald newspaper reporting 280 arson attacks, including on the villa of the caretaker prime minister, Abdullah Al-Thinni who has fled. By night, residents from pro-government tribes barricade themselves in their homes.

Attacks and looting have broken out across the city with the interior and electricity ministries and the prime minister’s office ransacked. One woman tweeted returning home to the plush seafront district of Regatta to find it smashed and her property gone.

On Sunday , the US embassy residential compound, evacuated a month ago, also fell foul of the militias. A commander announced it had been “secured”.

The silence from interventionists is despicable. They should admit they were wrong and acknowledge they were duped. That acknowledgement is important because continuing to delude oneself that there is anything humanitarian about US foreign policy enables further destructive imperial projects that absolutely have the potential of sparking a global military conflagration.

Steven Sotloff was killed by a group that spawned from the attempt to overthrow Assad in Syria, another attempted interventionist project. How Sotloff came to be captured by the Islamic State is not known. I wouldn’t put it past the CIA to have been involved, considering Sotloff’s reporting in Benghazi certainly wouldn’t have endeared him to our homegrown terrorist agency.

But don’t listen to me, I’m just some crazed conspiracist spewing black bile.

And the NFL season starts tonight.

Go Seahawks!


  1. steve kelly

    When has there ever been humanitarian intervention coming from Congress, the CIA or Pentagon? The war criminals and their enablers were not duped.

    The plan is what we see. It has remained constant for decades now. Regime change is a method, not the goal. The rest of the world is catching on to the perpetual lies, which prolong perpetual war. War is now well-coordinated, “broad-spectrum” engagement. Attacks are multi-pronged: cultural, financial and military.

    Do we demand international drug gangsters to admit they were wrong? Or even our own banksters who have made off with trillions?

    We are the ones who need to act, not the criminals sitting on a pat hand. The excuses for not acting at all are getting pretty lame. Individuals can always do something, and anything is always better than nothing.

    • Chomsky cites what he believes to be the only humanitarian intervention of the 20th century, the December 1978 invasion of Kampuchea (Cambodia) by Vietnam to remove the Khmer Rouge from power. Cuba sent troops to Angola for humanitarian purposes as well, but that was not a full-scale invasion.

      Other than that, the reasons are always fake.

      • Sotloff was a Jew, hence a Palestinian interventionist.

        He had it coming.

        • If it’s on TV, it must be real.

          • Not necessarily.

            This TV spot is all bullshit.

            • Since you didn’t ‘t sit through it, what statement are you making?

  2. steve kelly

    While far from an apology, could Kissinger be the first rat to jump from the sinking ship?http://online.wsj.com/articles/henry-kissinger-on-the-assembly-of-a-new-world-order-1409328075

    • JC

      Jumping ship? Or the opening volley in a call to arms for the neo world order, 21st century-style?

  3. James Maxie

    Will liz ever admit that all he really wants is attention?

    • lizard19

      I DO want my opinions and the material I link to (and create) to get attention. being a writer is no fun if no one pays attention.

  4. lizard19

    so, it appears a book coming out from on-the-ground personnel in Benghazi implicates the CIA in purposely delaying the rescue mission:

    Five commandos guarding the C.I.A. base in Benghazi, Libya, in September 2012 say that the C.I.A. station chief stopped them from interceding in time to save the lives of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and an American technician during the attack on the diplomatic mission there.

    In a new book scheduled for release next week and obtained by The New York Times, the commandos say they protested repeatedly as the station chief ordered them to wait in their vehicles, fully armed, for 20 minutes while the attack on the diplomatic mission was unfolding less than a mile away.

    “If you guys do not get here, we are going to die!” a diplomatic security agent then shouted to them over the radio, the commandos say in the book, and they left the base in defiance of the chief’s continuing order to “stand down.”

    • And who gave the station chief the orders to “stand down”?

      Inquiring minds want to know.

      • Let’s see, it had to have been a public official, someone whose name we all know, because that’s where power resides …


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