Now that our media landscape has been repainted in Bush-era colors (right down to a revival of 24, for crying out loud), there's a bit of news about this decade's Middle East debacle -- the September 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. The Washington Post reports that U.S. Special Operations forces captured a suspect in the attacks that killed four Americans, which means he should be appearing before the House Select Committee on #Benghazi any day now, to tell them what he told Susan Rice, and when he told her.
U.S. Special Operations forces captured one of the suspected ringleaders of the terrorist attacks in Benghazi in a secret raid in Libya over the weekend, the first time one of the accused perpetrators of the 2012 assault has been apprehended, according to U.S. officials.
The officials said Ahmed Abu Khattala was captured near Benghazi by American troops, working alongside the FBI, following months of planning, and was now in U.S. custody “in a secure location outside Libya.” The officials said there were no casualties in the operation, and that all U.S. personnel involved have safely left Libya.
The Post says they knew about the raid on Monday, but kept it under wraps due to security concerns. They also called the capture a "major victory for the Obama administration," because they clearly have paid no attention to how things work these days. There is nothing that can't be used to attack President Obama, and this will be no exception.
For example, why wasn't Khattala arrested last week? Or the week before that? There are many weeks during which Khattala was not arrested! IMPEACH!
The Post also reported that a U.S. official told them, "This was a unilateral U.S. operation," so why didn't the President get permission from the sovereign government of Libya? Come to think of it, why didn't he check with Congress first? And why didn't he hold a fancy Rose Garden event to announce it? COVERUP! INPEACH!!1!
Eventually, Khattala will be brought to trial... TRIAL?!? INPEEEAAACH!
And, of course, the apprehension of Khattala creates a power vacuum within Ansar al Sharia, which will obviously be filled by some super-human terrist way worse than Khattala, so THANKS AGAIN, NOBAMA!
For now, though, the normal people of America can nurture a small sense of justice, and the hope that Khattala's capture will lead to more of these perpetrators being captured. Thanks, Obama.
About an hour after The Washington Post broke the story, The White House released the following statement from President Obama:
Statement by the President on the Apprehension of Ahmed Abu Khatallah
The United States has an unwavering commitment to bring to justice those responsible for harming Americans. Since the deadly attacks on our facilities in Benghazi, I have made it a priority to find and bring to justice those responsible for the deaths of four brave Americans. I recently authorized an operation in Libya to detain an individual charged for his role in these attacks, Ahmed Abu Khatallah. The fact that he is now in U.S. custody is a testament to the painstaking efforts of our military, law enforcement, and intelligence personnel. Because of their courage and professionalism, this individual will now face the full weight of the American justice system.
Even as we welcome the success of this operation, we also pause to remember the four Americans who gave their lives in Benghazi representing their country: Ambassador Chris Stevens, Sean Smith, Tyrone Woods, and Glen Doherty. As I said shortly after the attack, they exemplified the values that we stand for as a nation, including a commitment to freedom and justice. All Americans should be grateful for their service, just as we are grateful to all our personnel – civilian and military – who represent our country around the globe. We will continue to honor our fallen by carrying on their efforts in support of the Libyan people’s aspirations to live in a peaceful, prosperous, and democratic society.
With this operation, the United States has once again demonstrated that we will do whatever it takes to see that justice is done when people harm Americans. We will continue our efforts to bring to justice those who were responsible for the Benghazi attacks. We will remain vigilant against all acts of terrorism, and we will continue to prioritize the protection of our service-members and civilians overseas. We will also sustain our support for the Libyan people, as they work to overcome years of tyranny and do the difficult work of building a democracy.