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Truth or consequences

Thoughts from Behind the Pressline

We heard that the security for the consulate was drastically reduced despite many requests by the ambassador for increased security and concerns about his and the staff’s safety. This last week we heard from three individuals, professional diplomats, who were personally involved in the Benghazi incidents; Greg Hicks, the deputy chief of mission in Libya who became the top U.S. diplomat in the country after Ambassador Chris Stevens was killed; Eric Nordstrom, a diplomatic security officer who was formerly the regional security officer in Libya and Mark Thompson, a former Marine and official with the State Department’s Counterterrorism Bureau.

They gave their personal accounts to the Senate Oversight Committee and provided a very different perspective, and a deeply personal one, than what we’ve heard coming out of Washington. These are passionate, lifetime, public servants who witnessed their friends and colleagues killed, perhaps needlessly. While rumors are swirling, facts and truth must prevail.

As disturbing as their version of events may be, I find it even more disturbing that the American public and the major media outlets haven’t been more engaged in getting to the facts behind these events now seven months removed. As a country, I fear we’ve allowed our political bias to cloud our interest in seeking the truth. To me, Benghazi represents the biggest threat our nation faces today and that simply is the polarization of the American public based on party perspective. We no longer have the ability to judge for ourselves what’s right or wrong. We now seem willing to blindly accept a crafted narrative.

We must accept the concept that neither party is above slanting the truth for their political gain, but when the American public loses the ability to seek and is willing to accept what they are told to believe, I fear the loss of our liberty isn’t far behind.

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