U.S. President Barack Obama said Wednesday that he directed his administration to increase embassy security around the world after the attack that killed the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three staffers.
The death of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and the staffers came amid protests at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Demonstrators also attacked the U.S. embassy in Cairo where they tore down the U.S. flag. Protesters in both countries were apparently angry about an online film considered offensive to Islam.
Fmr. Pentagon spokeswoman Torie Clarke says the two protests seemed planned. “It seems like such a coincidence that these two protests that were going on in two different places happened at the same time,” says Clarke. “It happened on 9/11. To me it sounds like there was more planning then just a random mob.”
Clarke, who served through three presidential administrations went on to add “it is very very important for our government, for our senior officials to be making strong statements condemning the violence… encouraging, urging the Egyptian government, the Libyan government to get to the bottom of this and make sure the people who did this are brought to justice.”
On the topic of where the U.S. is on foreign policy in the region Clarke says she does not know “what it is we’re trying to accomplish.” “I hear that we’re trying to help them set up democratic forms of government great. How are we doing that? I hear that there’s a bit of… maybe there are plenty of things going on on the ground and things going on behind the scenes but I think we need and very very strong and clear discussion of what we’re trying to accomplish. And maybe then we can better access how we’re doing,” concludes Clarke.