The Democrats’ rationale for boycotting the #Benghazi committee just died

**Posted by Phineas

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

Oh, they might still try it, though I think they’d be dumb to do so (1), especially when Obama’s former Secretary of Defense and Deputy Director of the CIA say they welcome it:

But Panetta and Morell, noting the attack has been subject to many investigations already, said they welcome the latest one in the House.

“If you look at the polling numbers a not insignificant percentage of the American people still have questions,” Morell said.

Morell, who said he already has testified four times about Benghazi, said he is 100 percent confident the upcoming investigation will show that allegations “the intelligence community politicized its analysis” are false.

Panetta, a former Central Coast congressman and Democratic Party stalwart, said there needs to be an investigation to lay out the full story to the public. “The problem has been sometimes bits and pieces of information keep coming out” that raise more questions, he said.

“Obviously there is a concern whether it’s going to be a political effort to target an issue for a campaign,” Panetta said. “I hope Democrats participate, and it really is a legitimate effort.”

Spoken like two men who have nothing to hide, or at least think they can come through the hearings relatively unscathed. It also makes it very difficult for the White House and State to continue to denounce the committee as a farce or a political stunt (2) when two key former officials say “fine by me.” Given the questions about Obama and Clinton’s actions (or non-actions) with regard to Benghazi, continued resistance may well convince more and more people that there really is something to hide.

One other thing to bear in mind: there’s been friction between the White House (and to a lesser extent State) and the intelligence and military communities for years. One has to wonder if the latter aren’t relishing the opportunity for a little payback.

via Power Line

Footnote:
(1) Come on, if you were Hillary Clinton or Susan Rice or Tommy “Dude” Vietor, among others, would you want to go before this committee with no allies there to at least try to cover for you? And, if you’re the Democrats, do you really want to leave the field to the Republicans, who smell blood?
(2) Of course it’s political — this is what Opposition parties do. But the key is that it is not solely political, and there are indeed very serious questions to answer.

PS: It would help if I placed the update on the right post.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

In “protect Hillary” mode, Eleanor Clift says Amb. Stevens died of “smoke inhalation”

Hillary Clinton testifies on Benghazi

HIllary Clinton testifies on Benghazi. – January 2013

There are any number of excuses liberal Democrats are using to circle around potential Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in order to try and protect her on the Benghazi issue, but this one – via the Washington Times – takes the cake:

Eleanor Clift, noted liberal columnist and pundit from the Daily Beast, insisted during a broadcast discussion of Benghazi on “The McLaughlin Group” that U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens wasn’t really murdered.

[…]

Her exact words: “I’d like to point out that Ambassador Stevens was not ‘murdered,’ ” she said, bending her fingers in the air to suggest the drawing of quote marks, “but died of smoke inhalation in a CIA safe room.”

[…]

Ms. Clift’s reply: The terrorist attack was fueled by the anti-Muslim video. And “it was still a CIA [outpost]. If you’re going to put somebody on trial, put David Petraeus on trial, not Hillary Clinton.”

The Times was quoting Mediate.com, which has video of the exchange you can watch. Pretty shameful that Clift is so much in the tank for Hillary Clinton that she deliberately tries to obfuscate the issue in order to help her chances at running for President.

Next thing you know, someone will be yelling out, “What difference at this point does it make?!?” Oh wait, that’s already happened

DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz sinks to new lows w/ #Benghazi tweet

Debbie Wasserman Schultz

‘I don’t know why I’m such a raging demagogue. I just am …’

Well, the Democrats are laying down the gauntlet on the issue of the Trey Gowdy-led Benghazi select committee and rather than agree to participate in the investigation, they’ve chosen to suggest Republicans are doing it for political gain. Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz led the way last night with this disgusting tweet:


Apparently the fact that there are four dead Americans whose families still haven’t gotten the answers they deserve has escaped these lying shills. The fact that an innocent video maker will live in fear for the rest of his life because incompetents in the Obama administration chose to blame him and incite death threats against him rather than to own up to their own horrific failures – failures that not only cost the lives of Ambassador Stevens and three others but could end up costing the video maker, too.

In the eyes of Congressional Democrats – and their rank and file as well – the means justify the ends here. And it’s sickening. The fact that the violent, bloody murderers of four innocent Americans – whose bodies were desecrated afterwards – haven’t been brought to justice doesn’t matter. And they could care less about the fact that they deliberately falsely blamed an innocent American citizen for inciting the Benghazi riots and murders. Whatever it takes to get President Obama and their de facto 2016 pick Hillary Clinton off the hook, right? They find taking the time to condemn talk show host Rush Limbaugh on the floors of the House and Senate a worthy endeavor but see investigating the murders of four Americans on foreign soil as something done for nothing more than “political gain.”

If that doesn’t sober people up as to the depths of absolute depravity within the Democrat party, starting all the way at the top with our celebrity President, I don’t know what will.

———–

Related: Twitchy Team documents the Twitter responses to Wasserman Schultz’s partisan hackery.

Rep. Trey “Get’ ’em” Gowdy to head up #Benghazi select committee

Congressman Trey Gowdy

Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-SC-4
Photo by Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call

This is super awesome to hear:

South Carolina Republican Rep. Trey Gowdy, a former federal prosecutor known for his aggressive style of questioning at congressional hearings, has been tapped to lead a select committee tasked with investigating the 2012 Benghazi attacks.

House Speaker John Boehner made the announcement Monday afternoon.

“With four of our countrymen killed at the hands of terrorists, the American people want answers, accountability, and justice,” he said. “Trey Gowdy is as dogged, focused, and serious-minded as they come.”

Boehner said Gowdy’s courtroom background makes him the “ideal person” to lead the newly announced investigation.

Gowdy said in a statement he was “honored” to serve as chairman. “While people are free to draw different conclusions from the facts, there should be no debate over whether the American public is entitled to have all of the facts,” he said.

Gowdy’s name had been high on the short list ever since the speaker announced Friday he would call a House vote on forming a select committee. Boehner had long resisted calls for such a probe, but reversed course after newly released emails raised questions about the White House role in shaping the administration’s public narrative after the attack.

[…]

But Gowdy seemed to attract the most attention. Gowdy is a second-term lawmaker, a former district attorney and federal prosecutor, and a member of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

I.can’t.wait.  This guy is as tough as they make them and he is not cowed by cries of “racism!” or “distraction!”   He tells it straight like it is.  I can think of few politicos in Congress who possess more of a dogged determination than him.  If that’s not enough for you, Congressman Issa – who has also been a warrior on the issue of Benghazi – praised his appointment to the select committee:

Issa, though, praised the selection on Monday, saying Boehner “could not have chosen a Member more committed to getting the full truth about the before, during, and after of the Benghazi terrorist attacks than Congressman Trey Gowdy.”

Finally, at long last, the American people – and more importantly, the families of the victims – may soon have answers.

#Benghazi: State Dept. knew within hours that it was a terrorist attack

**Posted by Phineas

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

And not a demonstration. I don’t know how I missed this over the weekend (1), but the administration’s favorite investigative reporter, Sharyl Attkisson, posted this little bombshell to her site back on the 1st (via Hot Air):

Internal Emails: State Dept. Immediately Attributed Benghazi Attacks to Terrorist Group

A newly-released government email indicates that within hours of the Sept. 11, 2012 attacks on Americans in Benghazi, Libya; the State Department had already concluded with certainty that the Islamic militia terrorist group Ansar al Sharia was to blame.

The private, internal communication directly contradicts the message that President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice and White House press secretary Jay Carney repeated publicly over the course of the next several weeks. They often maintained that an anti-Islamic YouTube video inspired a spontaneous demonstration that escalated into violence.

The email is entitled “Libya update from Beth Jones. ” Jones was then-Assistant Secretary of State to Hillary Clinton. According to the email, Jones spoke to Libya’s Ambassador at 9:45am on Sept. 12, 2012 following the attacks.

“When [the Libyan Ambassador] said his government suspected that former Qaddafi regime elements carried out the attacks, I told him the group that conducted the attacks—Ansar Al Sharia—is affiliated with Islamic extremists,” Jones reports in the email.

There is no uncertainty assigned to the assessment, which does not mention a video or a protest. The State Department provided the email to Congress in Aug. of 2013 under special conditions that it not be publicly released at that time. Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) sought and received permission to release it Thursday.

“If the video was a cause, why did Beth Jones of the State Department tell the Libyan Ambassador that Ansar Al Sharia was responsible for the attack?” said Chaffetz.

Gosh, that’s a darned good question Rep. Chaffetz asks. Do you think the forthcoming House special investigative committee on the Benghazi massacre might want to ask that of Ms. Jones, too?

There’s much more in the article about the origin of the controversial “talking points” and the subsequent effort to push the false narrative about a video being the goad for the attack, but I want to draw your attention to the routing of Jones’ email. These are the people copied in:

Among those copied on the emails: Deputy Secretary William Burns; Under Secretary for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman; Jake Sullivan, then-Deputy Chief of Staff (now promoted to national security advisor to Vice President Joe Biden); Under Secretary of State Patrick Kennedy; Cheryl Mills, then-Secretary Clinton’s Chief of Staff (now on the board of directors of the global investment firm BlackRock); and Victoria Nuland, then-State Dept. spokesperson (now promoted to Asst. Secretary of State). 

Note particularly the name of Cheryl Mills. We’ve met her before, a couple of times. A longtime Clintonista, she has the reputation of being “Hillary’s fixer.” She was also, as Attkisson reminds us, the Secretary’s chief of staff. If Mills had this information, not to mention the other bigwigs on that list, then it is inconceivable that Hillary herself did not know that it was her department’s firm opinion that the attack was caused by Ansar al Sharia. Add this to the fact that she spoke with the Deputy Chief of Mission in Libya that night  and then think about her promising the bereaved relatives of the victims, just a few days later and as their bodies were being delivered home, that the US would get the video maker. (2)

This wasn’t a case of honestly believing something that turned out to be false. Hillary Clinton was lying to heartbroken people and knew she was lying.

I can’t wait for these hearings to get started. Hillary is going to find out that, at this point, the truth still makes a difference.

RELATED: More Attkisson – Did Tommy “Dude” Vietor contradict the sworn testimony of White House officials? Must-read: Andy McCarthy on the AWOL President. More McCarthy: “Why I should not be the select committee’s special counsel.” Jonah Goldberg: “Benghazi made simple.”

UPDATE: Changed the headline to be a bit more accurate.

Footnote:
(1) Sharyl really needs to get an RSS feed going for her site.
(2) In fact, the very evening of the attack, she put out a press release blaming the video, after she had talked with President Obama, a conversation the contents of which we still do not know.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

#Benghazi: Boehner to appoint special investigating committee? UPDATE: Here we go

**Posted by Phineas

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

At last. Just posted on Fox News:

House Speaker John Boehner is “seriously considering” appointing a special committee to probe the Benghazi attacks and an announcement from GOP leaders could come as early as Friday, sources tell Fox News.

One senior GOP source told Fox News that Boehner, who has faced pressured from rank-and-file members for months to form such a panel, is expected to go forward with the committee.

It’s unclear whether the decision is yet final. Some sources told Fox News this is a “done deal,” while others said it is “close.”

The movement comes after newly released emails raised questions about the White House role in pushing faulty claims about the attacks.

For more about the emails in question and their significance, see….

This is one of those “about danged time” moments. What was probably the back-breaker for Boehner was the revelation that the White House had withheld this email when first demanded by the House, then released it only as part of a judicial decision in a FOIA lawsuit regarding Benghazi, and then claiming it really had nothing to do with Benghazi, even though it clearly did. (And why release it as part of the documents demanded in a Benghazi lawsuit, if it had “nothing to do with Benghazi, per se” and was previously classified? And why was it classified?) This just screams “something to hide.” which is like blood in the water to Opposition politicians.

Keep in mind there are really three parts, interrelated but distinct, to the “Benghazi question:”

  1. Prior to the attack: What was the role of then-Secretary Clinton, her top aides, and the State Department in determining the level of security in Benghazi, and why wasn’t the level or protection raised, or the compound evacuated, in the face of clear warning signs? Why were no emergency-reaction assets pre-positioned nearby to come to the aid of a station in a clearly dangerous area? Defense and the White House, too, have questions to answer here.
  2. During the attack: Where exactly were President Obama and Secretary Clinton, and when? Who was calling the shots? What actions, if any, did they take that night? Who made the decision not to even attempt a rescue with assets available in Sicily and Italy? (This last question was examined by the House Armed Services committee, which found no wrongdoing, but the testimony yesterday of General Robert Lovell (ret.), Deputy Director for Intelligence for Africom, the combat command responsible for Benghazi, makes it worth reopening.)
  3. After the attack: Who came up with the largely fraudulent story about a video? Why was it pushed on the American people for weeks after the massacre, including Secretary Clinton lying to the faces of the victims’ families? Why were the reports from State Department and CIA personnel on the ground in Libya that there was no anti-video demonstration ignored? My strong suspicion is that this was done to protect Obama’s reelection and Hillary’s 2016 prospects, but we need to know a lot more.

Clearly this committee would have a lot of work to do, much of it taking a lot of time. (Remember how long the Watergate hearings took?) Even if nothing criminal occurred, the American public has a right to a full public audit of the decisions and actions of its hired help before, during, and after the crisis.

Having raised the possibility, I can’t see Boehner not going through with this, which means we can expect some televised fireworks as witnesses are called under oath and House Democrats try desperately to protect the White House.

Stock up on the popcorn. smiley popcorn

RELATED: Earlier posts on the Benghazi massacre.

UPDATE: It’s on. Boehner will form the committee and Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) (1) is expected to lead it. Meanwhile, Issa’s House Oversight Committee has subpoenaed Secretary Kerry regarding the State Department withholding documents.

Footnote:
(1) Good choice.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

The maturity level & “professionalism” of the Obama admin in one quote

Everything's a joke unless they declare otherwise. Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

Everything’s a joke unless they declare otherwise.
Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

I think this about sums up how “adult’ the “adults in charge” are at the White House:

Former White House spokesman Tommy Vietor, in a tense interview with Fox News’ Bret Baier, downplayed the revived controversy over the Benghazi talking points, saying he does not remember his own role in the editing process because: “Dude, this was like two years ago.”

Vietor, the former spokesman for the National Security Council, insisted on “Special Report with Bret Baier” Thursday that emails that link a White House adviser to former U.N. ambassador Susan Rice’s controversial Sunday show statements about the Sept. 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate say nothing new.

The Obama administration has been under fire since the emails were released earlier this week, with some Republicans calling them the “smoking gun.” The emails indicate a White House aide helped prep Rice for her appearances and pushed the explanation that the attack was because of an Internet video. The White House is now facing credibility questions, since they had previously downplayed their role in Rice’s talking points.

Vietor repeated the stance of Press Secretary Jay Carney, who has repeatedly tried to claim that the so-called “prep call” with Rice — as it was described in one email — was not about Benghazi. Vietor said the email was referring to ongoing protests around the world against American embassies.

Baier then asked Vietor whether he personally changed the word “attack” to “demonstrations” in the talking points for Rice.

“Maybe, I don’t really remember,” Vietor said.

When pressed by Baier, Vietor said, “Dude, this was like two years ago. We’re still talking about the most mundane process.”

You can watch the video at Right Scoop.

Note to Vietor: Dude, like 4 American citizens including a US Ambassador were MURDERED in cold blood.  Doesn’t matter if it happened 20 years ago.  The American people – and the families of those killed especially – deserve answers.  And since when did this “it happened years ago” argument hold water for the left anyway? How many issues came up during the Bush administration that they’re still talking about  – and blaming him for – today? Always count on Democrats to out themselves as hypocrites. Never fails.

Yeah, I know Vietor isn’t in the administration anymore but he was at one time – and this is the mindset of Team Obama from the top down: “Beer Summits” are supposed to resolve decades old racial tensions that bubble to the surface thanks to the President inserting himself into a debate that he shouldn’t have, Presidential appearances on late night TV talk/entertainment shows are meant to showcase the “coolness” of the Commander in Chief, and when you can’t refute serious questions about a major policy issue seriously impacting voters, you puff out your bottom lip and essentially declare that although you don’t know the numbers on Obamacare – you also know that the numbers being given to you by the press aren’t correct, either.

Unfreakingreal. I sure as hell can’t wait for actual adults to be in charge of this country again. What an absolute disgrace.

#Benghazi: Proof of what we knew — the White House is full of lying suckweasels

**Posted by Phineas

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

So, more than 19 months after four Americans –including our ambassador– died at the hands of al Qaeda allies in an attack on our consulate in Benghazi, part of the truth finally comes out: the White House political operation used the story of  a video to protect President Obama reelection, sacrificing the truth, our national security interests, and any shred of decency owed the victims’ surviving families on the altar of his political needs.

Independent reporter Sharyl Attkisson has the story:

Newly-released documents reveal direct White House involvement in steering the public narrative about the September 11, 2012 terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Libya, toward that of a spontaneous protest that never happened.

One of the operative documents, which the government had withheld from Congress and reporters for a year and a half, is an internal September 14, 2012 email to White House press officials from Ben Rhodes, President Obama’s Assistant and Deputy National Security Advisor. (Disclosure: Ben Rhodes is the brother of David Rhodes, the President of CBS News, where I was employed until March.)

In the email, Ben Rhodes lists as a “goal” the White House desire “To underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure or policy.”

The email is entitled, “RE: PREP CALL with Susan, Saturday at 4:00 pm ET” and refers to White House involvement in preparing then-U.S.Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice for her upcoming appearance on Sunday television network political talk shows.

The Rhodes email states that another “goal” is “To reinforce the President and Administration’s strength and steadiness in dealing with difficult challenges.”

Via Twitchy. There’s much more, so read it all.

Remember, Obama had been claiming for months that al Qaeda was “on the run,” nearly beaten. It was one of his justifications for reelection: he had crushed our mortal enemy. Then they attacked our consulate and killed our personnel, and suddenly the whole narrative was about to fall like the house of cards it was.

This wasn’t a meeting of a group meant to deal with a foreign policy crisis. No, Rhodes was heading up a political damage control team. That’s where the priority was. Not in determining how this happened, not in pursuing our enemies, and certainly not in our Head of State and Commander in Chief taking responsibility, because that might have meant handing a cudgel to the Republicans. Jim Geraghty weighs in (emphasis added):

Yes, Rhodes’s speechwriting always focused in the foreign-policy realm. He was a longtime assistant to Lee Hamilton, then joined Obama as a speechwriter in 2007. But this guy’s not an expert on Libya. There’s no way he was in any position, from Washington, to overrule the assessment of the folks on the ground. He’s a message guy. And he quickly concluded – accurately – that the administration’s obvious ill-prepared presence in Libya, and failure to organize timely rescue efforts, on the 9/11 anniversary represented a serious threat to the president’s reelection. They needed a scapegoat; the video was the best option at hand.

That included, by the way, trampling the First Amendment rights of the video maker, who was hauled off in the middle of the night and pilloried in the press to play that scapegoat.

And before anyone says things were still unclear and they really thought the attack was a spontaneous reaction to the video, check the dates. Rhodes’ email was dated the 14th; the attack happened on the 11th. By the night of the attack, within hours, they knew that it was a terrorist strike, not an out of control riot against a video:

Minutes after the American consulate in Benghazi came under assault on Sept. 11, 2012, the nation’s top civilian and uniformed defense officials — headed for a previously scheduled Oval Office session with President Obama — were informed that the event was a “terrorist attack,” declassified documents show. The new evidence raises the question of why the top military men, one of whom was a member of the president’s Cabinet, allowed him and other senior Obama administration officials to press a false narrative of the Benghazi attacks for two weeks afterward.

Gen. Carter Ham, who at the time was head of AFRICOM, the Defense Department combatant command with jurisdiction over Libya, told the House in classified testimony last year that it was him who broke the news about the unfolding situation in Benghazi to then-Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The tense briefing — in which it was already known that U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens had been targeted and had gone missing — occurred just before the two senior officials departed the Pentagon for their session with the commander in chief.

According to declassified testimony obtained by Fox News, Ham — who was working out of his Pentagon office on the afternoon of Sept. 11 — said he learned about the assault on the consulate compound within 15 minutes of its commencement, at 9:42 p.m. Libya time, through a call he received from the AFRICOM Command Center.

As I wrote at the time:

But now we have the testimony of the general in charge of the combat command responsible for Benghazi that he, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff regarded this as a terrorist attack — within minutes of the attack beginning! Panetta and Dempsey then went to a previously scheduled meeting with Obama at which, we’re supposed to believe, they didn’t give their boss their considered opinion? They just let him believe the massacre happened because of some video few ever saw? That they let him and his advisers go on for weeks like this, when they knew the truth?

Garbage. It is inconceivable that Obama did not know that night that our consulate had come under terrorist attack. 

And that was three days before Rhodes’ email, which can only mean this was a deliberate attempt to lie to the American people in order to save Obama’s (and Hillary’s) craven political rear ends.

No wonder they tried to keep this email secret.

RELATED: At PJM, Roger Simon says this is “worse than Watergate” and calls for impeachment.

PS: And this only answers one major question about the Benghazi massacre. Still left begging is the question of just where Obama was that night and what was his role, if he even had one. The question of Hillary’s accountability for her incompetence leading up to the disaster is a whole other matter.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

#Benghazi: Obama lied in his Super Bowl Interview

**Posted by Phineas

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

I didn’t watch the Super Bowl (1), so I not only missed that, but Bill O’Reilly’s pre-game interview with President Obama. Given that we’re talking about two of my least favorite people in public life, I don’t think I missed much skipping this, either.

But then I came across a Washington Examiner article yesterday about the interview, specifically, the portion dealing with the massacre in Benghazi and did a double take. I couldn’t let this pass:

“That is inaccurate,” Obama said of Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly’s suggestion that the administration sought to sweep under the terrorist-nature of the attack in the final months of his 2012 re-election campaign.

“We revealed to the American people what we knew at the time,” said Obama.

In a contentious pre-Super Bowl interview with O’Reilly, Obama said early on during the attack — when then-Defense Secretary Leon Panetta informed him about the assault — that U.S. officials did not tell him exactly who was involved.

“People understood at the time that something very dangerous was happening,” Obama said. “In the aftermath what became clear was the security was lax — not all the precautions that should have been taken were taken.”

This is a family show, so I can’t use the first words that came to mind, so I’ll just leave it at “Mr. President, you lie like a rug.”

Let take a little walk back in time, shall we, and see just what people knew the night that consulate was attacked:

Minutes after the American consulate in Benghazi came under assault on Sept. 11, 2012, the nation’s top civilian and uniformed defense officials — headed for a previously scheduled Oval Office session with President Obama — were informed that the event was a “terrorist attack,” declassified documents show. The new evidence raises the question of why the top military men, one of whom was a member of the president’s Cabinet, allowed him and other senior Obama administration officials to press a false narrative of the Benghazi attacks for two weeks afterward.

Gen. Carter Ham, who at the time was head of AFRICOM, the Defense Department combatant command with jurisdiction over Libya, told the House in classified testimony last year that it was him who broke the news about the unfolding situation in Benghazi to then-Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The tense briefing — in which it was already known that U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens had been targeted and had gone missing — occurred just before the two senior officials departed the Pentagon for their session with the commander in chief.

According to declassified testimony obtained by Fox News, Ham — who was working out of his Pentagon office on the afternoon of Sept. 11 — said he learned about the assault on the consulate compound within 15 minutes of its commencement, at 9:42 p.m. Libya time, through a call he received from the AFRICOM Command Center.

Emphasis added. As I asked at the time, by what logic can anyone argue that the Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff would go to a meeting with the president in the midst of a crisis and not tell him what they just learned?

“Didn’t tell me exactly who was involved?” Hello? Does 9/11/12 give you a hint, sir? Or how about the weeks of threatening behavior and outright attacks on Western targets in Benghazi itself before the assault? You may not have known which exact splinter group of the local al Qaeda franchise did this, but the general affiliation was clear that night.

Oh, but later in the O’Reilly interview Obama says “any attack on a US facility is a terrorist attack.” This is the same misdirection he tried in his public statement the day after the Benghazi incident, when he talked of a generic terrorism, not the specifics of what happened that night.

The fact is that for weeks after the event, based on a hastily concocted series of talking points, the decision was made to blame a crappy video that few ever saw (2) and turn the maker, a two-bit crook whose constitutional rights were shredded, into a scapegoat to deflect blame from the administration’s incompetence.

In short, O’Reilly was right and Barack Obama, again, lied.

And still not a single one from among the attackers has paid any sort of price for killing four Americans.

PS: Yeah, yeah. I know: “Obama lied” is a redundancy.

Footnote:
(1) Thank God. Who kidnapped the Broncos and replaced them with a JV high school team?
(2) Journalist Lee Stranahan makes a persuasive argument that the video played some role and that critics dismiss it at the risk of weakening their own arguments. In my own view, however, the video was more pretext than cause.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)

#Benghazi: Lady Macbeth regrets

**Posted by Phineas

American Blood, US Consulate, Benghazi

“Madame sends her regrets.”

The Democratic Party’s presidential nominee-in-waiting (1) spoke before the annual convention of the National Automobile Dealers’ Association in New Orleans last weekend and took full responsibility for the security lapses at Benghazi that led to the deaths of four Americans, including the Ambassador, saying, “I was in charge, but I put politics ahead of good sense. I failed, and now four good men are dead because of my failure.”

Wait. No, she didn’t.

Former secretary of state Hillary Rodham Clinton remained vague Monday about whether she will run for president in 2016 and said the attacks on the U.S. outposts in Benghazi, Libya, were the biggest regret of her four years as the United States’ top diplomat.

Before a large crowd of politically active car dealers, Clinton, the overwhelming favorite among possible Democratic presidential contenders, discussed her signal accomplishments — notably a recommendation that U.S. commandos go into Pakistan to kill Osama bin Laden (2) — and her regrets.

“My biggest regret is what happened in Benghazi,” she said during a question-and-answer session after her keynote speech at the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) convention in a packed 4,000-seat room.

Four Americans, including Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, were killed when militants attacked the lightly protected U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi and a better-fortified CIA base nearby on the night of Sept. 11, 2012.

“Regrets.” Pardon me while I spit. Regrets are what you send when you can’t attend a dinner party. Regret is what you feel for not asking that neat girl or guy in high school to the prom, or when you turn down a great job offer and later realize how stupid you were.

Those are things you regret.

What happened in Benghazi was an atrocity, a murderous attack on US government personnel made possible by multiple layers of serial incompetence at the State Department, including the Secretary of State, herself, Hillary Rodham Clinton.

“Regrets?” Try “criminal negligence.”

Instead of speaking to car dealers, Clinton should be facing a jury.

via Sister Toldjah in email

PS: Might as well get this out of the way — “What difference, at this point, does it make?” A lot, Hill. A lot.

Footnotes:
(1) In her own mind, at least.
(2) Please. I’ll give Obama credit for ordering a direct assault on bin Laden, but, let’s be real: any American president, including James Buchanan and Jimmy Carter, would have done the same. And, Hillary? You were just one adviser among many.

(Crossposted at Public Secrets)