Although he canceled his election campaigning due to Hurricane Sandy, President Obama and the White House staff made sure the press pool reporters and photographers were there to chronicle his every word in acting presidential on Tuesday.
"I told the mayors and governors if they're getting no for an answer somewhere in the federal government, they can call me personally at the White House," Obama said.
Charlie Woods, the father of the slain Navy SEAL who died trying to save his fellow Americans in Benghazi on Sept. 11, must be puzzled on the president's response in dealing with a national emergency compared to how he handled the Libyan crisis when his son died a hero trying to save others. In fact, the day after the attack on the consulate in which four Americans died, Obama showed so much concern that he flew off to a fundraiser in Las Vegas.
The facts surrounding the attack on the U.S. consulate where Ambassador Chris Stevens and his team came under attack have become clearer, thanks to the strong reporting of Fox News, the only major media source doggedly pursuing this story.
On first hearing the shots fired, Woods and another SEAL asked at least twice for permission to go to the consulate and help out but instead were told to "stand down." Ignoring that order, the small team went to the consulate. Under fire, they evacuated those who remained and returned to the CIA annex where they began taking on fire there.
They made several calls for military back-up support but the requests were denied. Four hours later, the SEALS were dead. Immediately, the White House tried to deflect questions and blamed a YouTube video for the attacks. Questions remain on who gave the orders to stand down while the consulate was being attacked and then made the decision not to support the trapped Americans at the CIA annex.
As a parent, Charlie Woods has appealed to this administration for answers on why his son died. He called the order not to send in backup support to help the small American force an act of "cowardice" that did not represent the strength and character of America.
"That is cowardice by the people that issued that order (to stand down)," he said. "And our country is not a country of cowards. Our country is the greatest nation on Earth. And what we need to do is we need to raise up a generation of American heroes just like Ty who is an American hero."
Woods would like to know who made the decision not to pull the trigger.
"Those people who made the decision and who knew about the decision and lied about it are murderers of my son," Woods bluntly told Sean Hannity in a FOX interview."
At a memorial service at Joint Base Andrews for his son and the three other Americans killed, Woods said that the president approached him but Obama never looked him in the eye. He said that "shaking hands with him was like shaking hands with a dead fish."
Woods said he forgives whoever denied the apparent request but challenged them to "stand up" and show some courage, just like his son did when he went to the consulate to help others under attack.
"I wish that the leadership in the White House had the same level of moral courage and heroism that my son displayed," he said. "Remember this Mr. President, my son and the others died heroes. And it's better to die the death of a hero than it is to live the life of a coward."
By Jim Zbick