Syracuse (WSYR-TV) - It has become a major topic in the presidential race, the riot in Benghazi Libya that led to the killing of four Americans, including an ambassador.
But a top state department official - Undersecretary of State Tara Sonenshine - who visited Syracuse on Thursday said that Americans need to let the investigation run its course before reaching any conclusions.
“I think we will weather this storm. I think there is an investigation going on as to security and intelligence and that needs to play out and we need to respect that process,” Sonenshine said.
She says that despite the attack in Benghazi, she’s still confident in the Arab Spring that brought down several dictatorships in the Muslim world, but the uprisings have left those regions unstable, for now.
“I met with high school students from Libya, Egypt and Tunisia. All you have to do is look in the eyes of young people whose countries have emerged from years or tyranny to know that they are going to be in it for the long haul and we have to stay on the road with people,” Sonenshine said.
And while the countries that experienced the Arab Spring are a focus of the state department, it’s not the only place in the world that receives such attention.
"Part of being a good public official is the art of juggling many different problems at the same time, so you have to respond to the immediate but you also have to stay in things for the long haul,” Sonenshine said.
While it’s difficult to resist, she says we have to fight the urge to expect some of these countries in the Arab world who’ve lived under decades of tyranny and oppression to change overnight.
She says the US can support, help, and encourage the people those countries that it’s ultimately their own lives.