The real Benghazi scandal that is being ignored: How Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration destroyed Libya

(This article is published in Salon.)

In its laser-like probing into the Benghazi tree, Republicans have ignored the much larger forest: The U.S. destruction of Libya.

In 2011, the U.S. led a NATO coalition that bombed Libya for over seven months, destroying the government and leaving behind a political vacuum, large parts of which have been filled by extremist groups. Today, downtown Benghazi is in ruins, and chunks of the city are under the control of Ansar al-Sharia, an extremist Salafi Islamist militia that is designated a terrorist organization by the U.S.

As for the rest of Libya, much of the land is now controlled by rival warlords. No end is in sight for Libya’s civil war, which has already dragged on for many months, leaving thousands of people dead. This violent chaos has furthermore sparked a flood of refugees, further exacerbating what is already the worst refugee crisis since World War II.

This is the real Benghazi scandal. Yet it is being ignored.

Where are the several official inquires into this, the real Benghazi scandal? They will not be conducted, because, to the U.S. political establishment, the deaths of four Americans is worth infinitely more attention than the deaths of thousands of Libyans and the destruction of a country.

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