Indeed, as the article points out there is a Marine guard contingent at Barbados, and, in fact, at most embassies around the world. My late brother-in-law served as a Marine embassy guard in Iceland, which was a more sensitive situation than one might think back in that Cold War era.
The two former SEALs, Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods, who responded to the attack, manned a machine gun on the roof of the consulate annex, apparently for several hours. They were killed by mortar fire, as IBD reports, six hours and twenty minutes after the attack began. Apache helicopters and AC-130 gunships sat on the ground, idle yet within striking distance of the consulate. A drone circled overhead as the attack continued, monitoring the desperate fight. Woods and Doherty continued to man their positions and try to repel the jihadists even after they were wounded. They, no doubt, hoped they could hold on long enough for help to arrive. But no help was coming.
Again to IBD:
The question is: Why not?
Some suggest that sending nearby AC-130 gunships or Apaches would have been futile because in the chaos they couldn't have identified the attackers and might have hit innocents. A few well-timed machine gun bursts at nowhere in particular would have been sufficient to disperse the jihadists. We know there was no protest mob in the way and certainly we could have plucked those two heroic SEALs off the annex roof.
But to send help would have acknowledged it was a terrorist attack. It would have destroyed Team Obama's campaign mantra that Osama bin Laden was dead, al-Qaida was destroyed and the Arab Spring was in full bloom. Better to blame a filmmaker and his obscure video.Not only would help have acknowledged a terrorist attack, it would have risked a "Blackhawk Down" situation. Can you imagine the impact the shooting down of an Apache would have had on Obama's reelection bid? No, Mr. "Gutsy Call" could not take that chance. While it was "not optimal", the fact that better men like Woods and Doherty along with Sean Smith and Chris Stevens would lose their lives is a small price to pay to keep Obama in the White House. In the minds of Jarret, Obama, Rice, Clinton, and the rest of the goon squad, the loss of four American lives was better than the loss of the narrative and the loss of the image of Obama as a warrior who had successfully defeated Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda. In their twisted thinking, those courageous men did not die in vain but for the greater good of protecting Obama's foreign policy "legacy" and insuring that he remains as president.
There is not, I would guess, a single Apache pilot or crew or a single Marine in the region who would have hesitated for a heartbeat to rush to the aid of their brothers under attack that night. Like Doherty and Woods the only "calculation" they would have made would have been the one to get them to the fight. There was no strategic or tactical reason not to send help -- only a political one, motivated by cowardice.