Donald Rumsfeld tweeted this missive shortly after the Benghazi incident last year. If one is to judge "American weakness" by Rumsfeld's standards, then he and President George W. Bush are the exemplars of failure in protecting our embassies.
The Daily Banter's Bob Cesca produced this astounding timeline of 13 separate incidents where U.S. consulates were attacked during President Bush's, and then Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's, tenure.
The incidents below include all kinds of attacks — gunmen on bikes, suicide bombs, car bombs, gunmen shooting outside, and terrorists storming Consulate compounds similar to what happened in Benghazi. During each of those incidents Fox News was only supportive of the adminsitration's reactions and there were no calls for the removal of Secretary Condoleeza Rice.
The GOP and Fox's fixation on Benghazi is partisan propoganda. In some of these attacks the State Department had been forewarned about potential threats, unlike Benghazi. Instead of reporting the incident and the recent allegations from a whistleblower, Fox News is hacking together their own version of the events to further convolute the story's reality.
Check out the timeline of attacks on embassies and consulate compounds during Bush's tenure that received no similar fine-toothed-combing from Fox.
1. Jan. 22, 2002: Harkat-ul-Jihad al-Islami Attacks Indian U.S. Consulate
Five policemen were killed and 16 injured in the eastern Indian city of Calcutta because of an attack on the U.S. consulate by militant group Harkat-ul-Jihad al-Islami. American employees including the consul-general in Calcutta, Christopher Sandrolini, were unscathed, and those injured and killed were all Indians.
2. June 14, 2002: Suicide Car-Bomb Outside U.S. Consulate in Karachi
Twelve people died in an attack outside the U.S. consulate in Karachi when militants exploded a car bomb. A Taliban splinter group referred to as Al-Qanoon, or "The Law," claimed responsibility for the attacks that also injured 51 people. Two hired guards, a Marine, and five Pakistani staff members were among the injured in the attack that followed then Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's visit to the country.
3. Oct. 12, 2002: String Of Bali Bombings Included U.S. Consulate
The U.S. consulate in Indonesia was attacked as part of the 'Bali bombings' on a devastating October night. While there were no fatalities at the consulate, seven Americans were among the 202 dead at the coordinated blasts inside a bar and outside a nightclub.
4. Feb. 28, 2003: Consulate in Karachi, Pakistan, Attacked For the Second Time in One Year
Gunmen rode up on a motorbike to the U.S. consulate's security checkpoints and rained gunfire killing two Pakistani police officers. One gunman arrested by paramilitary officers was found to have several rounds of ammunition prepared for what could have been a far more devastating attack.
5. May 12, 2003: 36 People Including 9 Americans Die After Terrorists Storm U.S. Compound in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
The State Department had warned of a potential strike against the Saudi days before gunmen infiltrated the Al Hamra Oasis Village and two others killing 36 people and wounding 160. This was the most devastating attack on a State Department employees to occur under Bush. The Saudi government cracked down on terrorists group but that did not prevent another attack to occur a year later in Jeddah.
6. July 30, 2004: Islamist Attacks U.S. Embassy in Tashkent, Uzbekistan
Two Uzbek security guards died in a bombing on the U.S. embassy in Tashkent days. Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan claimed responsibility of the bombing after 15 alleged Islamist militants went on trial.
7. Dec. 6, 2004: Five Staff and Four Security Guards Die in U.S. consulate attack in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
Gunmen fought their way into the complex, reportedly taking 18 staff and visa applicants hostage for a short time before Saudi security forces stormed the building. The final dead counted four security guards, five staff, and three attackers. No Americans were among the dead.
8. March 2, 2006: Third Attack on Karachi U.S. Consulate Killed U.S. Diplomat
U.S. Diplomat David Foy was specifically targeted in the third attack in as many years on the Karachi consulate compound. He was one of four people killed. The bomb occurred two days before President Bush was to visit Pakistan and also targeted the Marriot hotel in an upscale neighborhood of Karachi.
This was a planned and coordinated attack that nobody covered as more than a news item.
9. Sept. 12, 2006: Four Gunmen Stormed the U.S. compound in Damascus, Syria
Gunmen yelling "Allahu akbar " - "God is great" - fired on Syrian security officers guarding the U.S. embassy. The gunmen used grenades, automatic weapons, car bombs, and a truck bomb and killed four people and wounded 13 others. Condoleezza Rice, then Secretary of State praised the Syrians that defended the U.S. employees: "the Syrians reacted to this attack in a way that helped to secure our people, and we very much appreciate that."
10. Jan. 12, 2007: Greek Terrorists Fired a Rocket-Propelled Grenade at the U.S. Embassy
An antitank grenade was fired into the empty consulate building by leftist terrorist group Revolutionary Struggle angry at American foreign policy. Even though nobody was in the building at the time the attack was a blatant breach of security and showed enormous security loopholes.
11. March 18, 2008: A Mortar is Fired at the U.S. Embassy in Sana’a, Yemen
Similar to the Greek attack, a mortar was fired at the U.S. embassy building killing 19 people and injuring 16. This was the second attempt at a similar mortar attack on the embassy. The first one missed the embassy and hit a girls' school next door.
12. July 9, 2008: Three Turkish Policemen were Killed When Gunman Fired on the U.S. Consulate Istanbul, Turkey
Four attackers drove up to the high-walled compound of the U.S. Consulate and started shooting the security guards. The gun battle took the lives of three of the attackers but the fourth one drove off. No Americans were injured or killed.
13. Sept. 17, 2008: 16 People Including 2 Americans Die in an Orchestrated Attack on the U.S. Embassy Sana’a, Yemen
An arsenal of weapons including rocket-propelled grenades and two car bombs were involved in the second attack on the embassy in seven months. Eighteen-year-old American Susan El-Baneh and her husband of three weeks died holding hands.