‘What Difference Does It Make?’


Just weeks ago former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was interviewed in a congressional hearing on the events of the attack upon our embassy in Benghazi. During the review she asked, “Was it because of a protest or is it because of guys out for a walk one night and they decide they go kill some Americans? What difference, at this point, does it make?”

Well Hillary, it means the difference between learning from our mistakes and letting our mistakes slip by as missed opportunities for growth. If we learn from this we can take precautions to prevent such attacks in the future. If we don’t, it shows that we misunderstand the mindsets of Muslim extremist, and scope of their threat to the security of US nationals abroad.

“The Obama Administration must correctly diagnose the threat in order to prevent future terrorist killings of Americans. The State Department and other U.S. government agencies obviously need to take much stronger precautions against determined Islamist terrorists than it does against protesters or “guys out for a walk one night.” Regrettably, the Administration seeks to treat terrorism under a law enforcement paradigm that failed to protect Americans from terrorism when it was adopted by the Clinton Administration before 9/11. In Libya and elsewhere, where the rule of law is weak or nonexistent, this approach is doomed to fail. What is needed is a more proactive, comprehensive, and global approach.” Heritage, 2013

The difference between some guys out for a walk and a premeditated terrorist attack is preventability. If it was a premeditated attack, we should have seen the warning signs and responded appropriately. We failed to do so, and we need to learn our lesson and do just that in the future.

We need to do what makes our diplomats most secure. Asking, “What difference does it make?” is like asking what difference it makes if someone was thrown over a cliff or if he slipped and fell. One is an act of aggression, the other is unpreventable. The difference is the difference between life and death.

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