Skip to comments.The Benghazi Scandal Grows (Long article)
Posted on 05/10/2013 6:01:13 AM PDT by Kaslin
CIA director David Petraeus was surprised when he read the freshly rewritten talking points an aide had emailed him in the early afternoon of Saturday, September 15. One day earlier, analysts with the CIAs Office of Terrorism Analysis had drafted a set of unclassified talking points policymakers could use to discuss the attacks in Benghazi, Libya. But this new versionproduced with input from senior Obama administration policymakerswas a shadow of the original.
The original CIA talking points had been blunt: The assault on U.S. facilities in Benghazi was a terrorist attack conducted by a large group of Islamic extremists, including some with ties to al Qaeda.
These were strong claims. The CIA usually qualifies its assessments, providing policymakers a sense of whether the conclusions of its analysis are offered with high confidence, moderate confidence, or low confidence. That first draft signaled confidence, even certainty: We do know that Islamic extremists with ties to al Qaeda participated in the attack.
There was good reason for this conviction. Within 24 hours of the attack, the U.S. government had intercepted communications between two al Qaeda-linked terrorists discussing the attacks in Benghazi. One of the jihadists, a member of Ansar al Sharia, reported to the other that he had participated in the assault on the U.S. diplomatic post. Solid evidence. And there was more. Later that same day, the CIA station chief in Libya had sent a memo back to Washington, reporting that eyewitnesses to the attack said the participants were known jihadists, with ties to al Qaeda.
Before circulating the talking points to administration policymakers in the early evening of Friday, September 14, CIA officials changed Islamic extremists with ties to al Qaeda to simply Islamic extremists. But elsewhere, they added new contextual references to radical Islamists. They noted that initial press reports pointed to Ansar al Sharia involvement and added a bullet point highlighting the fact that the agency had warned about another potential attack on U.S. diplomatic facilities in the region. On 10 September we warned of social media reports calling for a demonstration in front of the [Cairo] Embassy and that jihadists were threatening to break into the Embassy. All told, the draft of the CIA talking points that was sent to top Obama administration officials that Friday evening included more than a half-dozen references to the enemyal Qaeda, Ansar al Sharia, jihadists, Islamic extremists, and so on.
The version Petraeus received in his inbox Saturday, however, had none. The only remaining allusion to the bad guys noted that extremists might have participated in violent demonstrations.
In an email at 2:44 p.m. to Chip Walter, head of the CIAs legislative affairs office, Petraeus expressed frustration at the new, scrubbed talking points, noting that they had been stripped of much of the content his agency had provided. Petraeus noted with evident disappointment that the policymakers had even taken out the line about the CIAs warning on Cairo. The CIA director, long regarded as a team player, declined to pick a fight with the White House and seemed resigned to the propagation of the administrations preferred narrative. The final decisions about what to tell the American people rest with the national security staff, he reminded Walter, and not with the CIA.
This candid, real-time assessment from then-CIA director Petraeus offers a glimpse of what many intelligence officials were saying privately as top Obama officials set aside the truth about Benghazi and spun a fanciful tale about a movie that never mattered and a demonstration that never happened.
The YouTube video was a nonevent in Libya, said Gregory Hicks, a 22-year veteran diplomat and deputy chief of mission at the U.S. embassy in Tripoli at the time of the attacks, in testimony before the House Oversight and Reform Committee on May 8. The only report that our mission made through every channel was that there had been an attack on a consulate . . . no protest.
So how did Jay Carney, Susan Rice, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and others come to sell the country a spurious narrative about a movie and a protest?
There are still more questions than answers. But one previously opaque aspect of the Obama administrations efforts is becoming somewhat clearer. An email sent to Susan Rice following a key White House meeting where officials coordinated their public story lays out what happened in that meeting and offers more clues about who might have rewritten the talking points.
The CIAs talking points, the ones that went out that Friday evening, were distributed via email to a group of top Obama administration officials. Forty-five minutes after receiving them, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland expressed concerns about their contents, particularly the likelihood that members of Congress would criticize the State Department for not paying attention to Agency warnings. CIA officials responded with a new draft, stripped of all references to Ansar al Sharia.
In an email a short time later, Nuland wrote that the changes did not resolve all my issues or those of my building leadership. She did not specify whom she meant by State Department building leadership. Ben Rhodes, a top Obama foreign policy and national security adviser, responded to the group, explaining that Nuland had raised valid concerns and advising that the issues would be resolved at a meeting of the National Security Councils Deputies Committee the following morning. The Deputies Committee consists of high-ranking officials at the agencies with responsibility for national securityincluding State, Defense, and the CIAas well as senior White House national security staffers.
What the Hearings Mean
Life is Like a Novel and may We Pray as We Stand! ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tneHF7M0TS8
This is what good journalism is all about.
These people should rot in hell. The families of the our lost Americans should sue them all...all of them.
Lastly, and maybe the most disappointing for me was the gutless Petreaus. Was he blackmailed to go along with this BS? What kind of “soldier” was this guy? I’ll tell you...Sad Sack.
Do we have anyone...anyone in this God Forsaken government, (and media) of ours who can stand up to these people who are controlling our lives as though we are cattle?
That fact that it doesn’t matter to the majority of Americans makes me sick.
Nixon stepped down from the presidency for far less. Mainly because his own party demanded it of him. Will the democrats sit back...and the media.. and continue to defend these hacks?
I’m sick of it...and I can’t take it any more.
Thanks, That AmericanThinker article sure sounds a whole lot different from what I saw reported on cBS news last night.
Patreuas was run out of town (resigned) less than 2 months after the attack. Draw your own conclusions after reading Steven Hayes’ most recent article.
Why are you shrugging this off. Is your real name Jay Carney?
My conclusion is that he had an opportunity to stand up and courageously do what was right. It would have changed the whole complexion of the election...probably would have resulted in Obama and company getting run out of town.
Instead this gutless wonder..said nothing...because he was probably told that if he told the truth he’d be exposed...
Well guess what, dumb @ss, you didn’t tell the truth...and you got run out of Washington...and what’s worse? You still haven’t come clean.
He should be brought up to congress and asked to explain why he was complicit with these people...
Every aspect of thie administration...every aspect...is one of incompetency and politics. Take your pick.
Strange, Kaslin ... you must not read me. Moving on.
You post a YouTube video by Rascal Flatts that has nothing to do with the article
“The final decisions about what to tell the American people rest with the national security staff, he reminded Walter, and not with the CIA.”
Not when you are called to testify before Congress, General Petraeus. You should have come clean then, instead of folding to these scumbags.
Seems Obama issued the 'stand down' directive if not direct order & Hillary ran the cover-up.
As Issa gets the facts and testimony on both, the MSM will have to pick sides.
Who will they seek to protect and who will they have to throw under the bus.
The latter group is far more dangerous and I suspect the higher one gets along the food chain the more carnivorous the ideologues. These people were put in place by Obama and by Hillary for their usefulness and for their commitment to the cause. The cause is roughly that America is the last great obstacle to the nirvana of world government and the nationstate as such is really not worth defending, indeed, it is to be done away with, especially in the one nation state which stands athwart the March of Socialism screaming, "stop!"
It is striking how many people colluded in a cover-up to protect the institution, the presidential candidate, and the secretary of state, without considering the good of the country. What kind of culture exists in the upper reaches of this administration?
I believe that most of them will, because they have the same agenda. They hate America because they never understood her or, for some strange reason, despised what she represented.
Winston Smith surely was working overtime that day!!!
In spite of those who hate America ... I know ... We Shall Win. I believe this with all my heart and soul. My Faith is Not Shattered and on Pieces on the Ground. Our Heads Must Be Up and Standing for Justice. This Forum Does Just That!