Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 10:25 AM PDT
Adam Weinstein took note Thursday that an astonishing claim based on a single source had taken root among right-wingers. The claim was that the American ambassador in Cairo, career diplomat Anne Patterson, had ordered the Marines there not to carry loaded weapons. Among the spreaders of the claim were neoconservative pundit Norman Podhoretz, the Fox Nation site and hate radio host Jay Severin, who has been hired for a slot on Glenn Beck's TheBlaze Radio Network. Both they and others tweeted:
Report: "US MARINES GUARDING EGYPT EMBASSY NOT PERMITTED TO CARRY LIVE AMMO" Consider. Insanity. IMPEACH!
â€” @Jay_Severin via web
The sole source for this assertion was "Nightwatch"â€”a conservative "intelligence" blog written by former Defense Department analyst John McCreary and hosted by a subsidiary of a defense contractors' lobby groupâ€”which attributed the report to unnamed (and uncounted) "USMC blogs." According to McCreary, Pattersonâ€”a career foreign service officer who was not a political appointee, and who served George W. Bush as an ambassador to the UN and to Pakistanâ€”"did not defend U.S. sovereign territory and betrayed her oath of office." And: "She neutered the Marines posted to defend the embassy, trusting the Egyptians over the Marines."
Within a few hours, Weinstein had tracked down the truth and published the text of a memorandum from the Marine Corps congressional liaison, Major Alex Cross:
The Ambassador did not impose restrictions on weapons or weapons status on the Marine Corps Embassy Security Group (MCESG) detachment. The MCESG Marines in Cairo were allowed to have live ammunition in their weapons. The Ambassador and Regional Security Officer have been completely and appropriately engaged with the security situation. Reports of Marines not being able to have their weapons loaded per direction from the Ambassador are not accurate.
Some of the spreaders, like Podhoretz, backed off after that revelation. But the vile "Obama is an anti-American swine" Severin doubled down:
Word in: Obama-hired "Friendly" Libyan "Security" helped Murder our 2 SEALS + Ambassador. Plus: By Obama Order, Embassy Marines had no ammo.
â€” @Jay_Severin via web
Like many of his companions in the bully business, Severin is vicious on the radio and Twitter while pretending that he's a patriot and an advocate for American men and women in uniform. He gets his jollies (and his paycheck) via savage insults of truth-tellers like Weinstein.
A suggestion, Jay. Ring up Major Cross and call him a liar and a coward. Better yet, meet him for lunch.Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 10:25 AM PDT. Also republished by Daily Kos.