This is an excerpt from Mark Steyn’s recent column, Who’s ‘Politicizing’ Benghazi? at NRO. It’s a rather long one:
…the State Department outsourced security for the Benghazi consulate to Blue Mountain, a Welsh firm that hires ex-British and -Commonwealth special forces, among the toughest hombres on the planet. The company’s very name comes from the poem “The Golden Journey to Samarkand,” whose words famously adorn the regimental headquarters of Britain’s Special Air Service in Hereford. Unfortunately, the one-year contract for consulate security was only $387,413 — or less than the cost of deploying a single U.S. soldier overseas. On that budget, you can’t really afford to fly in a lot of crack SAS killing machines, and have to make do with the neighborhood talent pool. So who’s available? Blue Mountain hired five members of the Benghazi branch of the February 17 Martyrs’ Brigade and equipped them with handcuffs and batons. A baton is very useful when someone is firing an RPG at you, at least if you play a little baseball. There were supposed to be four men heavily armed with handcuffs on duty that night, but, the date of September 11 having no particular significance in the Muslim world, only two guards were actually on shift.
Let’s pause right there, and “politicize” a little more. Liberals are always going on about the evils of “outsourcing” and “offshoring” — selfish vulture capitalists like Mitt shipping jobs to cheap labor overseas just to save a few bucks. How unpatriotic can you get! So now the United States government is outsourcing embassy security to cheap Welshmen who in turn outsource it to cheaper Libyans. Diplomatic facilities are U.S. sovereign territory — no different de jure from Fifth Avenue or Mount Rushmore. So defending them is one of the core responsibilities of the state. But that’s the funny thing about Big Government: The bigger it gets, the more of life it swallows up, the worse it gets at those very few things it’s supposed to be doing.