[Ed. – One especially important difference is that no one from the administration has appeared on multiple TV networks to lie through her teeth as to what precipitated the ambush.]
Earlier this month something happened in Niger that’s happened countless times before in our 16-year war against jihadists: An allied patrol was lured into an ambush, and American soldiers died. Based on the early reports … it was a particularly vicious firefight, and American troops were unusually vulnerable. They weren’t in armored vehicles, they didn’t have readily available air cover, and they even had to rely on contractors to evacuate the wounded. Tragically, one soldier was killed after getting separated from his unit during the fight, and it took two days to recover his body.
Make no mistake, there is much to investigate in this incident, and investigations are already underway. The mission itself was uncontroversial. Barack Obama first sent American troops to Niger to assist French military operations in Mali, and they’ve been there ever since, conducting drone operations and training allied soldiers. There’s evidence that American personnel had conducted similar operations alongside allied troops many times without incident.
But this time things were obviously different. This time we may have been betrayed, and we may not have been fully prepared for the consequences. The losses were a shock here at home.