Condemnation Quick from Floridians for Murder of Americans at Consulate in Libya
Around the State
Florida congressional members have shown a unified front in condemning a religiously fevered mob that attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, killing four Americans including the U.S. ambassador.
Noting that Libya and Egypt have both struggled to overcome the turmoil that has plagued their lands since uprisings last year that toppled their longtime leaders, Moammar Gadhafi and Hosni Mubarak, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Miami, also called on the Libyan government to bring those responsible for the deaths to justice.
“It is imperative that these senseless mob attacks be condemned by the Libyan government and that it commit to stop this violence and bring those responsible for the deaths of our American diplomats to justice,” Rubio, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and Select Committee on Intelligence, stated in a release.
“In both Libya and Egypt, their governments have an obligation to resolutely condemn these violent attacks and protect American diplomatic missions and personnel based on their soil.”
Rubio added that both Libyan and Egyptian people must understand that “if left unchecked, violent attacks like these against our embassies and diplomats will lead Libya and Egypt down a dark path and rob them of their hopes of a more prosperous and democratic future.”
U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Orlando, echoed Rubio’s sentiments seeking justice and pointed to possible ties to the terrorist group al-Qaida.
“These murders have the markings of revenge by al-Qaida for the death of the No. 2 leader of the terrorist group, Abu Yahya al-Libi,” Nelson stated in a release.
“The Associated Press has reported that the killing in June of al-Libi was the biggest setback to al-Qaida since the death of Osama bin Laden.
“In light of Monday night’s Internet-video statement by the head of al-Qaida, Ayman al-Zawahiri, who urged Libyans to attack Americans to avenge the recent death of al-Libi, I am asking my colleagues on the Senate Intelligence Committee to immediately investigate what role al-Qaida or its affiliates may have played in the attacks in Libya and Egypt, and to urge appropriate action.”
Fox News reported Wednesday that a team of about 50 Marines has been dispatched to Libya from the U.S. naval base in Rota, Spain.
President Obama has ordered "all necessary resources" to support the security of U.S. personnel in Libya as the posts in Libya and Egypt have come under siege over a film by Sam Bacile, a California real estate developer, that ridiculed Islam's Prophet Muhammad.
The U.S. has also pumped up “security at our diplomatic posts around the globe," Obama stated in response to the death of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other American staff members.
All four Americans reportedly suffocated as they were trying to evacuate the consulate after the swarming mob set it ablaze.
Before the White House confirmed the death of Stevens, the campaign for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney indicated that the attacks showed Obama to be a “failure to be an effective leader for U.S. interests in the Middle East.”
Romney issued a statement that accused the Obama administration of sympathizing with the Libyan protesters.
“I’m outraged by the attacks on American diplomatic missions in Libya and Egypt and by the death of an American consulate worker in Benghazi,” Romney stated in the release. “It’s disgraceful that the Obama administration’s first response was not to condemn attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.”
U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Miami, who chairs the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, pushed for those responsible to be held accountable.
“Let us be clear,” Ros-Lehtinen stated at the start of the committee’s meeting on Wednesday, “there is no justification for the murder of our diplomats and attacks of our embassies. We have nothing for which we should apologize. We must ensure that the perpetrators of this recent round of 9/11 attacks are held accountable.”
U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Miami Gardens, also condemned the assault.
“Ambassador Stevens and his colleagues were part of our effort to help the Libyan people build a bright future after the fall of Moammar Gadhafi's oppressive regime,” Wilson, a member of the U.S. House Committee on Foreign Affairs, stated in a release.
“This deadly attack is a chilling reminder to all of us that our fellow Americans in embassies and consulates around the world sometimes serve in harm’s way -- and that we need to thank and support them just as we do our brave men and women in uniform.”
U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, stated there was “absolutely no justification for such a heinous act of hatred and violence.”
“Ambassador Stevens and his consular staff, along with the entire American diplomatic mission working in Libya, were in the country to help the Libyan people overcome decades of misrule and oppression under the Gadhafi regime,” Hastings stated.
“They were in Libya to assist with the transition to democracy inspired by the Libyan people themselves, which will lead to a more tolerant, inclusive, and prosperous society for all Libyans.
Reach Jim Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (772) 215-9889.