'Core Al Qaeda' nonsense: The Big Mac problem

Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have a huge problem explaining away the lies about Benghazi, and they are digging themselves an ever-deeper hole. Underlying all of this is a presidential election that was fraudulently won by perpetrating a lie, that Al Qaeda was on the run, which required fabricating a story that the armed assault on the Benghazi diplomatic facility was just a riot of Muslims outraged by an internet movie trailer that had not yet been translated into Arabic.

But now it is acknowledged by the Senate Intelligence Committee (chaired by Senator Dianne Feinstein, D-CA) that the attack was preventable because warnings of AQ terror cells in Benghazi were offered to Hillary Clinton's State Department and ignored:

According to Feinstein, when then-CIA director David Petraeus testified before her committee on September 13, 2012, he was clear that "al Qaeda elements" were involved in the assault. On September 14, the original draft of the CIA's talking points noted, "we do know that Islamic extremists with ties to al Qaeda participated in the attack." 

So a new fiction has been invented: that the groups operating in Libya were not "core Al Qaeda." But as Stephen Hayes and Thomas Joscelyn point out in their excellent Weekly Standard article:

Neither [State Department spokeswoman] Harf nor any other administration official has offered a precise definition of "core" al Qaeda. The term, invented in the West, vaguely refers to the group's top leaders in South Asia.

By this ridiculous reasoning, if I buy a Big Mac at my local Mickey D's, I am not patronizing McDonalds because "core McDonalds" is in Oak Brook, Illinois. All those French farmers who torch McDonald's stores in France are mistaken.

All of this evasion is not mere tomfoolery; thanks to this narrow definition, as Ed Lasky points out,

...the administration's refusal to designate Al Qaeda as the group behind Benghazi has put handcuffs on the Pentagon. Under the law known as the Authorization for Use of Military Force, the Pentagon can only engage in military action against "Al Qaeda" members. The law bars the military from trying to capture or kill the murderers of Americans-all to protect the image of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.

Hillary Clinton is now the presumptive Democrat nominee in 2016. We should take a lesson from the Democrats, and hammer away at her responsibility for not just the murder of an ambassador and three brave Americans, but the compounding of the crime by shackling our forces and granting an exemption to the very people who  did the crime, all to protect her political career.


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