After the US ambassador to Libya and three other Americans were killed in Benghazi, the Obama administration insisted they were simply caught in a protest over an anti-Islam film. Now, as it has become increasingly clear Chris Stevens and the other victims were actually killed in a planned terrorist attack, "every Muslim with access to media" is aware of the video, writes Stephen F. Hayes in the Weekly Standard, and protests related to it are going on in more than 20 countries. That's because, as the Obama administration lied about the Libya attack and looked to deflect the blame, denouncing the video became "the centerpiece of its public relations campaign"—and that was exactly what al-Qaeda wanted, according to one US intelligence official.
"The focus on the film was an 'information operation' by jihadists designed to generate rage against America," Hayes writes, and "it worked." And this is not the first time the Obama administration has "misled the country" and "tried to sell a bogus narrative after an attack": It did the same after attempts by both the underwear bomber and the Times Square bomber, downplaying the incidents and only later admitting both would-be bombers were linked to al-Qaeda and the Pakistani Taliban. The bottom line is that Obama promised to repair US relations with the Muslim world, but instead "the defining characteristics of his foreign policy have been mendacity, incompetence, and, yes, stupidity," Hayes writes. "This isn’t just a problem. It’s a scandal." Click to read his full column.