One of the stories that’s just coming out is what happened to Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens just before his death during a riot at the American consulate in Banghazi, Libya.
Stevens was found lying in a smoke-filled room during the confusion by a civilian Libyan volunteer rescuer, who called for help. This rescuer thought Stevens might be dead, but he knelt beside the ambassador, felt for a pulse, and then noticed Stevens’ eyelids flicker.
As wire services tell the story, the rescuer shouted out for joy, not because Stevens was near death, but because there was a sign of life.
“God is great,” the rescuer cried. Other Libyans who came into the room cried out as well, praising God that the man on the floor still had a chance.
There were no ambulances at hand, so the Libyans carried Stevens to a private car and rushed him to a hospital, where physicians worked on him. He bore no wounds, but was asphyxiated from the smoke.
Up to this point, they did not know his identity. All they knew was he probably was an American. Only later did they learn he was the American ambassador.
We tend to think ill of the Libyans because of the riot, but the fact is that most Libyans are intelligent, kind spiritual people who know they are living among a few Islamist bullies who cause great harm when they get out of hand.
Guess who told us that. It was J. Christopher Stevens, who loved Libya, and accepted, even sought, many hardship postings there within the past decade when profound troubles shook that country. He was not the Ugly American. He was the good American.
As people, we often are guilty of the logical fallacy of collectivization — being too willing to believe that the bad behavior of a few violent actors reflects the actions of all within a population.
It’s the same thing the Libyans are guilty of, blaming all the United States for a stupid movie made by a stupid and dishonest man and distributed by a company without morals.
The only hero in this debacle is Chris Stevens.