Skip to comments.The Clinton Scandal Playbook and Benghazi
Posted on 05/17/2013 8:37:04 AM PDT by smoothsailing
May 17, 2013
The punditocracy is pulling out its collective hair, wanting to know why there have apparently been multiple layers of cover-ups in the evolving Benghazi story. An early scandal from the Clinton administration, the so-called Travelgate scandal, may be instructive.
Recall that in the 1993 firings of employees at the White House Travel Office, a determination was made early on by the new president Bill Clinton and then-First Lady Hillary Clinton that the Travel Office workers, who served at the pleasure of the president, could be fired and that the Travel Office business, and the commissions that came with it, given to a cousin of President Clintons, Catherine Cornelius, who had a travel agency of her own.
But simply handing over government business to a relative would have been politically embarrassing, so the Clintons concocted a story whereby the Travel Office was rife with corruption and the workers there needed to be fired. An audit was conducted on Travel Office finances, and while the record-keeping at the office was found to have been pretty inadequate, there was no smoking gun of corruption or embezzlement. No matter. The FBI was pressured to make arrests, and the local US Attorney was charged with prosecuting the employees for corruption.
White House denials of any scheme, and leaks by those involved, led to a firestorm of media criticism. Most of the Travel Office employees were eventually given other government jobs or retired. A prosecution for corruption of the head of the Travel Office, Billy Dale, ended in an acquittal. Clintons cousin was removed as new head of the Travel Office. A later report written by Independent Counsel Robert Ray concluded that, while she did not make any knowingly-false statements under oath, First Lady Hillary Clinton had made a number of inaccurate statements concerning the firings and her role in them.
In retrospect, it is kind of funny that the Clintons would ever complain about corruption from anyone. Pot, meet Kettle. That kind of thing.
But the point is that the initial decision to replace government employees with the presidents cousin, so that she could make commissions from arranging White House travel, was a bad decision. Everything following that decision — the firings, the made-up charges of corruption, the federal prosecution, and the denials from the Clintons that later proven to be untrue — were an effort to distract people from the initial bad decision.
Fast forward to the fall of 2012, when the State Department repeatedly denied requests by officials at the American consulate in Benghazi for more security. This was the initial bad decision from which flowed all other obfuscations.
Who would make such a bad decision? In his recent congressional testimony, consulate security officer Eric Nordstrom blamed Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, pointing to a memo signed by Secretary Clinton, denying additional security.
What would lead Clinton to make such a bad decision? Remember that in the summer of 2008, when her presidential campaign had ended and the Russians invaded South Ossetia, Hillary Clinton was formulating what would later be her reset policy towards Russia. Such a policy assumed that whatever frostiness existed between the United States and Russia had been caused by American belligerence. If only the American side would initiate a fresh reset, then the Russians would be more accommodative to United States interests, like our policies concerning Irans nukes.
It may be difficult to grasp, but liberals, Hillary Clinton included, actually believe that bullies like Russia can be appeased by weakness of others, hence the reset policy towards Russia, and the later denial of more security for the consulate at Benghazi. Clinton probably thought that a strong American military presence at the Benghazi consulate would be provocative.
Obviously this was a bad decision. On September 11, 2012, the American consulate was attacked and overrun by terrorists in a planned, coordinated attack. While under attack, officials at the consulate called for help, which could have made it from Italy in time. But if provided, this military help would have highlighted the earlier, bad decision to keep security there weak, so the request for military help during the attack was denied.
When the smoke had cleared, an American ambassador and three other Americans were dead. Anything besides a narrative that this attack was a spontaneous uprising because of an anti-Muslim You Tube video would have led people to question the initial, bad decision by the State Department to keep consulate security weak to begin with. The following week, UN Representative Susan Rice appeared on five television news shows to reiterate the story that the deaths were caused by a spontaneous uprising related to the video. A few days later, President Obama stated at a forum hosted by Univision, and again later at the United Nations, that the Benghazi attacks were provoked by the video.
President Obama and Secretary Clinton even filmed their own public service announcement, played in Pakistan, apologizing for a private American production of the anti-Muslim video and calling for calm. This PSA later became a self-fulfilling prophecy, when its reference to an anti-Muslim video caused riots in Pakistan that led to the deaths of 18, and scores of injured Pakistanis.
All these actions were taken to distract people from the initial, bad decision made by Secretary Clinton to keep consulate security in Benghazi weak. Apparently, when defending a bad decision by Hillary Clinton, anything goes. The standard operating procedure was apparent as far back as 1993.
Sociopath of State ALERT!
TREASON - continuous, PRE-MEDITATED, agenda-driven, in-your-face, media-complicit, AGENCY-ABETTED, representative-enabled, ongoing...
Although Hillary doesn’t solely “own” Benghazi, she is definitely neck deep in it all.
So true to form for the Clintons, the game becomes stall then obfuscate, then change the conversation, and cry, “that’s old news”
Perhaps she is thinking 2016, knew to resign to minimize exposure for Benghazi, and then leak the IRS mess which Obama no doubt totally “owns” ( being such an thinned skinned, angry, hostile, spiteful person)
This has his motivation and Marxist intent written all over it.
Thereby, the Clintons distract from the Benghazi matter, and hope to change the subject until its once again, old news. And the press simply plays along
I clearly remember 8 years of this crap with these two.
Miss us yet?
Sorry Tom but your appeasement theory doesn’t hold water.
The terrorist are on the same page in their thinking in planning the attack as the Obama adm. is in it’s actions after the attack began.
The terrorist thinking in planning planned the attack was with group that wasn’t prepared to take the compound if resistance was encountered. When unexpected resistance was encountered the terrorist had to regrouped and there a second wave of attacks to take the compound.
The Obama adm. actions after the attack began, they tried to stop any resistance to the attack. Had the Obama adm. been successful in stopping the resistance, the first group of terrorist would have easily been able to take the compound with the forces they had and they wouldn’t have had to regroup.
The terrorist clearly had the manpower to take the compound if there was resistance, so why didn’t they just bring the manpower for the first attack?
Nice try NRO, but Hillary is not charged with making that decision. In fact, there is only ONE person who can order the US Military to make an attack on foreign soil without a declaration of war: the Commander-in-Chief. Hence, the request to make such a rescue HAD TO COME DIRECTLY TO OBAMA. He MUST have issued the denial, even if it was to say nothing. The chain of command procedure is in written protocols.
The operation was denied, Obama did it, and it's high time the media, including the National Review, started saying so.
And this is news to me how? I’ve read her Master’s thesis. Have you?
Tom Thurlow and his National Review piece explores the Clinton history of initial bad decisions, and while Clinton is the focus, Thurlow makes clear that Obama became her accomplice.
I never implied that it wasn't. I took on the implication that the decision not to rescue had anything to do with protecting her. It didn't.
Thurlow makes clear that Obama became her accomplice.
Horsepucky. Zero despises Hillary and has dissed her at many an opportunity. This was about saving his reelection prospects, and covering up Brennan's illegal war and gun running operation.
No horsepucky, we’re both right. No need to be defensive.
Because they were sure there wouldn't be resistance? Any ideas why they might think that?
You can’t plan an attack against a particular person on a particular day at a particular location without assurances that particular person will be at the particular location on the particular day.
Stevens may have been in on it himself not expecting to get killed just taken hostage, but Hillary and or Obama also had to be in on making sure he was going to be there. Stevens couldn’t guarantee he would be there all on his own, Hillary or Obama could have told him to be somewhere else on that day.
Planning the attack then planning the protest in Egypt to create the “spontaneous” lie was months in the works not just a few days.