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"This explosive book is a long-needed answer to court histories that continue to obscure key facts about our backstage war with Moscow. Must-reading for serious students of security issues and Cold War deceptions, both foreign and domestic."
-- M. Stanton Evans, author of Stalin's Secret Agents and Blacklisted by History: The Untold Story of Senator Joe McCarthy and His Fight Against America's Enemies
"[West] only claims `to connect the dots,' which is a very modest description of the huge and brilliant work she has obviously done. ... It is not simply a good book about history. It is one of those books which makes history."
-- Vladimir Bukovsky, author of To Build a Castle and co-founder of the Soviet dissident movement, and Pavel Stroilov, author of Behind the Desert Storm.
"Every once in a while, something happens that turns a whole structure of preconceived ideas upside down, shattering tales and narratives long taken for granted, destroying prejudice, clearing space for new understanding to grow. Diana West's latest book, American Betrayal, is such an event."
-- Henrik Raeder Clausen, Europe News
"No book has ever frightened me as much as American Betrayal. ... It all adds up to a story so disturbing that it has changed my attitude to almost everything I think about how the world actually is."
-- Steven Kates, Quadrant
“What Diana West has done is to dynamite her way through several miles of bedrock. On the other side of the tunnel there is a vista of a new past. Of course folks are baffled. Few people have the capacity to take this in. Her book is among the most well documented I have ever read. It is written in an unusual style viewed from the perspective of the historian—but it probably couldn’t have been done any other way.”
-- Lars Hedegaard, historian, editor, Dispatch International
"Diana West's new book rewrites WWII and Cold War history not by disclosing secrets, but by illuminating facts that have been hidden in plain sight for decades. Furthermore, she integrates intelligence and political history in ways never done before."
-- Jeffrey Norwitz, former professor of counterterrorism, Naval War College
Do not be dissuaded by the controversy that has erupted around this book which, if you insist on complete accuracy, would be characterized as a disinformation campaign.
-- Jed Babbin, The American Spectator
Enlightening. I give American Betrayal five stars only because it is not possible to give it six."
-- John Dietrich, formerly of the Defense Intelligence Agency and author of The Morgenthau Plan: Soviet Influence on American Postwar Policy.
"Diana West masterfully reminds us of what history is for: to suggest action for the present. She paints for us the broad picture of our own long record of failing to recognize bullies and villains. She shows how American denial today reflects a pattern that held strongly in the period of the Soviet Union. She is the Michelangelo of Denial.”
-- Amity Shlaes, author of Coolidge and The Forgotten Man: A New History of the Great Depression
If you're looking for something to read, this is the most dazzling, mind-warping book I have read in a long time. It has been criticized by the folks at Front Page, but they don't quite get what Ms. West has set out to do and accomplished. I have a whole library of books on communism, but -- "Witness" excepted -- this may be the best.
-- Jack Cashill, author of Deconstructing Obama: The Lives, Loves and Letters of America's First Postmodern President and First Strike: TWA Flight 800 and the Attack on America
American Betrayal is a monumental achievement. Brilliant and important.
-- Monica Crowley, Fox News analyst, radio host and author of What the Bleep Just Happened: The Happy Warriors Guide to the Great American Comeback
"If you haven't read Diana West's "American Betrayal" yet, you're missing out on a terrific, real-life thriller."
-- Brad Thor, author of the New York Times bestsellers Hidden Order, Black List and The Last Patriot.
Thursday, October 11, 2012 4:20 PM
This week's syndicated column:
Imagine, pre-9/11/12, that you were responsible for arranging the defense of the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Would you have considered American interests and personnel best protected by bringing in a local security outfit called the February 17 Martyrs Brigade?
The question has yet to come up in House hearings, but I think it holds the key to the Obama administration’s betrayal of the American people in “Benghazi-gate.” To an American with common sense not subverted by advanced degrees, the thought of putting Islamic “martyrs” in charge of American “infidels” in Benghazi – which, fun fact, literally means “city of holy warriors” – would trigger the inevitable “heck, no.” And that’s without even knowing what is significant about Feb. 17.
But I’m talking about Washington, D.C. Here, placing the lives of Americans in the hands of a thug-army linked to multiple atrocities and drawn from jihad-epicentral eastern Libya disturbs no collective brain wave. No matter that Benghazi and nearby Derna sent more men, per capita, to Iraq to kill Americans than anywhere else in the world. As far as the Obama administration is concerned, putting local boys in barracks inside the consulate compound was a great idea. Why not? President Obama’s ambassador, the late Christopher Stevens, was, as they say, “reaching out” across the jihad spectrum on official business.
Meanwhile, Ansar al Sharia (“Supporters of Islamic Law”), the al-Qaida-linked militia believed to have led the consulate assault in September, is a spinoff of the February 17 Martyrs Brigade, but that didn’t scratch the lacquered political surface, either. And even as reports remind us of ties among February 17 Martyrs Brigade leadership, the Muslim Brotherhood and the web of jihad-poison spun by Qatar’s Yusuf al-Qaradawi and Libya’s Ali al-Salabi – the latter having been tapped by the Qatari dictatorship to distribute $2 billion to Libyan “rebels” – the focal point remains elsewhere.
Partly, that’s because the breathtaking lies the Obama administration has told us post-9/11/12 distract our attention from the disastrous policy previously in place. Plus, there remains a lingering confusion over good guys and bad guys. After all, Uncle Sam isn’t supposed to support bad guys. The Obama administration, however, threw in Uncle Sam’s lot with bad guys – the “rebels,” the “martyrs,” the Muslim Brothers, the whole jihad-happy crew in Libya and the wider Middle East. Uncle Sam, more or less, crossed to the “other side.” It is this alliance or support for “martyrs” and their sympathizers in Libya, Tunisia, Egypt and Syria that is the betrayal from which Benghazi-gate rises, particularly as our veterans’ cemeteries and hospitals are filled with casualties caused by such “martyrs.”
Whether, as the Daily Beast reported, the February 17 Martyrs Brigade may have been ordered by a pro-al-Qaida Libyan politician to “stand down” for the attack remains to be verified. Meanwhile, the State Department reminds us not to forget the service of two brigade members who were beaten and two who were shot defending the compound. “But there were some bad apples in there as well,” one intelligence source told the Daily Beast.
How could there not be? And here is where the significance of Feb. 17 comes in.
John Rosenthal, an independent journalist based in Europe, wrote early on that the Libyan rebellion wasn’t led only by al-Qaida commanders. This anti-Gadhafi movement was symbolically also an Islamic jihad on Western liberty itself. We know this because, as Rosenthal reported, the “Day of Rage” called for Feb. 17, 2011, to kick off the Libyan civil war was the fifth anniversary of another assault on the West, also in Benghazi.
Following Friday prayers on Feb. 17, 2006, thousands of Benghazians attacked the Italian Consulate to punish the temerity of an Italian minister, Roberto Calderoli, who several days earlier had publicly defended free speech in the West. The world was then experiencing another cycle of Islamic violence, this one orchestrated to punish a tiny Danish newspaper for publishing a sheet of Muhammad cartoons and, in turn, Denmark itself for refusing to punish the journalist-transgressors of Islamic law, which outlaws any critiques and all depictions of Muhammad.
Calderoli didn’t merely defend free speech. During his TV interview, he dramatically unbuttoned his shirt to reveal a T-shirt featuring a cartoon of Muhammad. Referring to Islamic rioters worldwide, he added: “When they recognize our rights, I’ll take off this shirt.” He was forced to resign from his post the next day, a sacrifice on the altar of Shariah (Islamic law) by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. It wasn’t enough.
“We feared for our lives,” the wife of the Italian consul later told the Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, describing the attack in which the consulate was set on fire. All personnel were safely evacuated. Libyan police used tear gas to try to disperse the rioters, later opening fire and killing 11 attackers.
These are the “martyrs” who serve as role models for the security team that was defending the U.S. Consulate. Symbolically, they figure into the wider war in Libya, which is often called the February 17 Revolution. With this in mind, it becomes clear that the Islamic war on free speech, the basis of our liberty, was an inspiration of “regime change” in Libya. And we supported it.
That’s the real scandal.
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