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Friday, May 10, 2013

We Need More Hearings On Benghazi Now

“The fact of the Watergate cover-up is not nearly as interesting as the step into making the cover-up. And when you understand the step, you understand that Richard Nixon lied. That he was a criminal.” — Bob Woodward

The talking points used by Ambassador. Susan Rice on the Sunday shows on the weekend after the 9/11/12 terror attack in Benghazi underwent at least 12 edits — including revisions by the Obama administration’s State Department — new emails obtained by ABC News show. Those revisions included scrubbing all references to an Al Qaeda-affiliated group and all references to previous CIA warnings about a terror threat.

The Benghazi scandal is breaking out into the mainstream media, after an uneasy couple of days in which reporters and editors digested the testimony at Wednesday's House hearing, and evidently decided they could not portray it as warmed-over old news.

Notably, ABC News built upon the pioneering work of the Weekly Standard to publish an astonishing story about the Administration's Benghazi talking points passed through twelve different revisions, before they were presented to the public... and each revision was more dishonest than the last

ABC News reported this morning:

When it became clear last fall that the CIA’s now discredited Benghazi talking points were flawed, the White House said repeatedly the documents were put together almost entirely by the intelligence community, but White House documents reviewed by Congress suggest a different story.

ABC News has obtained 12 different versions of the talking points that show they were399x6008 extensively edited as they evolved from the drafts first written entirely by the CIA to the final version distributed to Congress and to U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice before she appeared on five talk shows the Sunday after that attack.

White House emails reviewed by ABC News suggest the edits were made with extensive input from the State Department. The edits included requests from the State Department that references to the Al Qaeda-affiliated group Ansar al-Sharia be deleted as well references to CIA warnings about terrorist threats in Benghazi in the months preceding the attack.

ABC’s Chief White House Correspondent Jonathan Karl said on Friday morning that the talking points were “dramatically edited by the administration” and that State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland played a major role in them:

“State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland raised specific objections to this paragraph drafted by the CIA in its earlier versions of the talking points:

“The Agency has produced numerous pieces on the threat of extremists linked to al-Qa’ida in Benghazi and eastern Libya. These noted that, since April, there have been at least five other attacks against foreign interests in Benghazi by unidentified assailants, including the June attack against the British Ambassador’s convoy. We cannot rule out the individuals has previously surveilled the U.S. facilities, also contributing to the efficacy of the attacks.”

In an email to officials at the White House and the intelligence agencies,Victoria Nuland 600x3813 State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland took issue with including that information because it “could be abused by members [of Congress] to beat up the State Department for not paying attention to warnings, so why would we want to feed that either?”

In an addition, a new report by Stephan Hayes of the Weekly Standard says then-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″:

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 enemy al 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 CIA’s 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 CIA’s 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 administration’s 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. [Emphasis added]

All of the information doesn’t seem to bode well for Press Secretary Jay Carney, who said back in November that only a “single adjustment” had been made.

“Those talking points originated from the intelligence community.  They reflect the IC’s best assessments of what they thought had happened,” Carney said on November 28, 2012. “The White House and the State Department have made clear that the single adjustment that was made to those talking points by either of those two institutions were changing the word ‘consulate’ to ‘diplomatic facility’ because ‘consulate’ was inaccurate.”

“The CIA drafted these talking points and redrafted these talking points,” Carney told ABC. “The fact that there are inputs is always the case in a process like this, but the only edits made by anyone here at the White House were stylistic and non-substantive. They corrected the description of the building or the facility in Benghazi from consulate to diplomatic facility and the like. And ultimately, this all has been discussed and reviewedrhodes_ben and provided in enormous levels of detail by the administration to Congressional investigators, and the attempt to politicize the talking points, again, is part of an effort to, you know, chase after what isn’t the substance here.” (It should be noted that Ben Rhodes, the person who is claimed to have supervised the editing of the “talking points” is the brother of David Rhodes the president of CBS News. Perhaps this is why CBS News has given virtually no coverage of Benghazi or the hearings)

You can read a PDF version of the full edits, along with the timeline of the edits by clicking here. White House emails reviewed by ABC News suggest the edits were made with extensive input from the State Department. The edits included requests from the State Department that references to the Al Qaeda-affiliated group Ansar al-Sharia be deleted as well references to CIA warnings about terrorist threats in Benghazi in the months preceding the attack. Note the September 15th 9:45 a.m. version.

That would appear to directly contradict what White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said about the talking points in November.

Stephan Hayes concludes his Weekly Standard article:

“[Gregory] Hicks testified last week that he was not consulted on the talking points and was surprised when he saw Rice make a case that had little to do with what had happened in Benghazi. “I was stunned,” he said. “My jaw dropped.”

The hearings last week produced fresh details on virtually every aspect of the Benghazi controversy and raised new questions. By the end of some six hours of testimony, several Democrats on the committee had joined their Republican colleagues in calling for more hearings, additional witnesses, and the release of unclassified documents related to the attacks in Benghazi.

On May 9, House speaker John Boehner echoed the calls for those unclassified Benghazi documents to be made public. He had two specific requests. First, Boehner called for the release of an email from Beth Jones, acting assistant secretary for Near East affairs, sent on September 12. Jones wrote to her colleagues to describe a conversation she’d had with Libya’s ambassador to the United States. When the Libyan raised the possibility that loyalists to Muammar Qaddafi might have been involved, Jones corrected him. “When he said his government suspected that former Gadhafi regime elements carried out the attacks, I told him that the group that conducted the attacks, Ansar al Sharia, is affiliated with Islamic terrorists.” Among those copied on the email: Jake Sullivan, Victoria Nuland, Deputy Secretary of State Bill Burns, and Cheryl Mills, Hillary Clinton’s chief of staff and longtime confidante.

Second, Boehner asked the White House to release the 100 pages of internal administration emails related to the drafting and editing of the talking points. Sources tell The Weekly Standard that House Republicans will subpoena them if the administration does not turn them over voluntarily.”

There is another aspect of Benghazigate that has yet to be explored and a possible reason for Mitt Romney’s reluctance to bring Benghazi up in his third and final debate with Obama. According to Geraldo Rivera and Glenn Beck — two very diverse bedfellows — there was a possibility that then CIA Director David Petraeus gave Romney a classified briefing and requested that Romney lay off of Benghazi. They stated that Romney was told that Ambassador Stevens was in the midst of gather weapons from the Libyan rebels for the purpose of giving them to Turkey who would then secret them to the Syrian rebels.

According to a October 19, 2012 report by Michael Kelly in Business Insider there's growing evidence that U.S. agents—particularly murdered ambassador Chris Stevens—were at least aware of heavy weapons moving from Libya to jihadist Syrian rebels:

“In March 2011 Stevens became the official U.S. liaison to the al-Qaeda-linked Libyan opposition, working directly with Abdelhakim Belhadj of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group—a group that has now disbanded, with some fighters reportedly participating in the attack that took Stevens' life.

In November 2011 The Telegraph reported that Belhadj, acting as head of the Tripoli Military Council, "met with Free Syrian Army [FSA] leaders in Istanbul and on the border with Turkey" in an effort by the new Libyan government to provide money and weapons to the growing insurgency in Syria.

Last month The Times of London reported that a Libyan ship "carrying the largest consignment of weapons for Syria has docked in Turkey." The shipment reportedly weighed 400 tons and included SA-7 surface-to-air anti-craft missiles and rocket-propelled grenades.

Those heavy weapons are most likely from Muammar Gaddafi's stock of about 20,000 portable heat-seeking missiles—the bulk of them SA-7s—that the Libyan leader obtained from the former Eastern bloc. Reuters reports that Syrian rebels have been using those heavy weapons to shoot down Syrian helicopters and fighter jets.

The ship's captain was "a Libyan from Benghazi and the head of an organization called the Libyan National Council for Relief and Support," which was presumably established by the new government.

That means that Ambassador Stevens had only one person—Belhadj—between himself and the Benghazi man who brought heavy weapons to Syria.

Furthermore, we know that jihadists are the best fighters in the Syrian opposition, but where did they come from?

Last week The Telegraph reported that a FSA commander called them "Libyans" when he explained that the FSA doesn't "want these extremist people here."

And if the new Libyan government was sending seasoned Islamic fighters and 400 tons of heavy weapons to Syria through a port in southern Turkey—a deal brokered by Stevens' primary Libyan contact during the Libyan revolution—then the governments of Turkey and the U.S. surely knew about it.

Furthermore there was a CIA post in Benghazi, located 1.2 miles from the U.S. consulate, used as "a base for, among other things, collecting information on the proliferation of weaponry looted from Libyan government arsenals, including surface-to-air missiles" and that its security features "were more advanced than those at rented villa where Stevens died."

And we know that the CIA has been funneling weapons to the rebels in southern Turkey. The question is whether the CIA has been involved in handing out the heavy weapons from Libya.

In any case, the connection between Benghazi and the rise of jihadists in Syria is stronger than has been officially acknowledged.”

Another similar report by Vicky Nissen on October 29, 2012 in the Washington Examiner echoes the Business Insider report:

“The President of the United States, the Secretary of State, and the Secretary of Defense have lied about the motivations leading to the murders at Benghazi on 9/11, blaming the attacks on an obscure, unknown video rather than a planned attack by the Al-Qaida franchise, Ansar al-Sharia. They are also holding back the truth and evidence of what occurred, what they saw and what they knew. The question remains “Why was the Ambassador targeted by radical Islamists?”

It is significant that on the evening of September 11, Ambassador Christopher Stevens travelled to the dangerous city of Benghazi and met with the Turkish Consulate General for an hour before the attacks were initiated. What did they discuss?”

“Almost a year ago, The UK Telegraph reported that Stevens’ contact, Belhadj, acting as head of the Tripoli Military Council, "met with Free Syrian Army [FSA] leaders in Istanbul and on the border with Turkey". His purpose was to offer money, weapons and training to the growing insurgency in Syria. against Assad, mainly consisting of radical Islamists and Al-Qaida fighters to topple Assad.

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyp Erdogan, a close friend of Obama, once enjoyed close ties with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, but has become one of his fiercest critics and has demanded he step down in the face of a 16-month-old uprising in which thousands of civilians have died, and 44,000 Syrian refugees have fled to Turkey.”

In yet another repot by Eileen Kersey reporting from Benghazi on January 26, 2013 in Digital Journal n September 2012 the US Ambassador in Benghazi was killed. Chris Stevens and three other Americans died when the American consulate was attacked. This week US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has been questioned regarding the murder of these citizens:

“The attack happened on the anniversary of 9/11. British nationals in Libya were already playing a more cautious game, they still are. Clinton is accused of failing to protect the ambassador and the others that died. A request for improved security at the embassy compound was allegedly ignored.

The Business Insider reports, 'In March 2011 Stevens became the official U.S. liaison to the al-Qaeda-linked Libyan opposition, working directly with Abdelhakim Belhadj of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group—a group that has now disbanded, with some fighters reportedly participating in the attack that took Stevens' life.'

Wouldn't it be both ironic and tragic if Stevens was killed by a former ally?

Media reports claim that Abdelhakim Belhadj and other Libyan rebels were instrumental in the civil war in Syria. "He met with Free Syrian Army [FSA] leaders in Istanbul and on the border with Turkey" in an effort by the new Libyan government to provide money and weapons to the growing insurgency in Syria."

Various reports show links between Libya and the Syrian rebels. It is speculated that vast amounts of Libyan weaponry have been shipped from Libya to support the Syrian opposition. Weapons dating back to the time of Qaddafi. Tough Jihadist fighters in Syria are Libyans, but they are not wanted by the FSA, Free Syrian Army.

So where does the late Chris Stevens and the Embassy fit into all of this?

According to jihad watch, 'Ambassador Stevens may have indeed been the point man in yet another U.S.-led gun running scheme. From what can be pieced together thus far, the Muslim Brotherhood and its proxy, Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) leader Abdulhakim Belhadj, were advising the U.S. on which rebel-factions in Libya and later, in Syria, should receive our arms. Those rebel factions, by the way, comprise members of al Qaeda, which stands to reason given that bin Laden’s alma matter is in fact Muslim Brotherhood progeny.'

The latest evidence indicates that US agents, including Stevens, were fully aware that heavy weapons were being moved from Libya to Syria. 'Retired Army Lt. Gen. William G. Boykin—who is the former commander of the U.S. Special Forces Command, the former deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence' believes that the US was either supporting the Syrian rebels or was about to do so, via Benghazi.”

According to the Free Republic Fox News Bureau Chief of Intelligence Catherine Herridge in her October 28, 2012 report “A Smoking Gun Uncovers Lies & Possible Motive” said that the role being played by the U.S. Mission in Libya is to control the movement of weapons out of Libya to Syrian rebels fighting to bring down the Bashar Al-Assad régime. The Benghazi mission played a key role in “engaging, legitimating, enriching and emboldening Islamists who have taken over or are ascendant in much of the Middle East,” said the president of the Center for Security Policy. From there, we can infer that Gadhafi was overthrown in order to use Libya as the doorway to get the arms in for distribution to Syria, Yemen, Jordan, Egypt and eventually Saudi Arabia. Especially Syria, for now.

Respected news agencies such as Reuters, the Telegraph, and The Times of London have reported on this so there must be some degree of validity to the reports. These are not agencies are not conspiracy bloggers. Yet, there has virtually no reports of this aspect of the Benghazi attack in our mainstream media. It this facet of the Benghazi attack is even partially true it will make Iran-Contra and Fast and Furious look like child’s play. No one died in Iran-Contra, but hundreds of Mexicans and two U.S. Border agents died in Fast and Furious! It appears that Obama, while shouting for more gun control loves gun-running. This aspect of Benghazigate has far more implications regarding our foreign policy and national security and MUST be explored by Congress! If the Democrats and our mainstream media don’t get on-board with this aspect of Benghazigate they will eventually be more disrespected by the American public than they are now. Like Watergate they need to set politics aside and get down to business of determining the facts or they just will not be trusted.

Today the Democrats are making an all-out effort to discredit the State Department whistle-blowers. According to, of all places, NBC News reported that Democrats are actively working to undermine the testimony of Benghazi whistleblowers. NBC's Lisa Myers said this morning on TV that Democrats have been calling her to attempt to undermine the testimony of Benghazi whistleblower Gregory Hicks:

"There is something called Benghazi going on," said Myers. "And I think the Democrats now are starting to worry about it. I started--I got calls from a number of Democrats yesterday trying to undermine Greg Hicks's testimony, saying he wasn't demoted, etc. So I think they feel that some damage was done by those three witnesses on Wednesday."

One comment on the “stand down” order. Gregory Hicks in his testimony stated he was told when he asked about the availability of F-16s from Aviano AFB in Italy that it would take 20 hours to ready the aircraft and that no tankers were available. Aviano AFB is Located in northeastern Italy at 46° 1′ 53″ N, 12° 35′ 49″ E (WGS-84). This is approximately 1,050 miles NNW of Benghazi. Incirlik AFB is located in southern Turkey at 37°00′07″N 035°25′33″E and is the staging NATO base for the 121st Refueling Air Wing’s KC-135R Stratotankers of the Ohio Air National Guard. Incirlik is located approximately 950 miles NE of Benghazi. The combat radius of the F-16 (depending on the configuration) with drop tanks and 500 lb. bombs is somewhere between 340 to 600 miles. Okay, the F-16 does not have the combat radius to each Benghazi and return with air-to-air refueling. The two questions I have is why weren’t KC-135 tankers available from Incirlik and why would it take 20 hours to ready to fighters? Are they telling us that during the Cold War when Soviet fighters could sortie from bases in Poland and reach the Rhine River in less than an hour it would have taken 20 fighters based at Ramstein AFB 20 hours to make ready to intercept them. I don’t think so! I think this is just another one of those obfuscations from the Defense Department.

Now on to Hillary Clinton and her Republican Guard.

With each new revelation, what has always been obvious becomes more pronounced: the State Department’s self-proclaimed final word on the Benghazi Massacre, the risibly named “Accountability Review Board” investigation, is a fraud. Yet, like the rest of the Obama administration’s obstructive wagon-circling, the ARB’s report continues serving its intended purpose: to thwart efforts to hold administration officials accountable. Even on Fox News, which has been admirably dogged covering a scandal the Obamedia has done its best to bury, the refrain is heard: How could the ARB report be a whitewash when its investigation was run by such Washington eminences as Ambassador Thomas Pickering and Admiral Michael Mullen?

Andrew McCarthy writes in Accuracy in Media:

“The answer is simple: Pickering and Mullen were not chosen by accident; then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton tapped them because, to insulate herself, she needed a pair of Beltway careerists held in high esteem by the progressive-friendly Republican establishment. As night follows day, Pickering and Mullen produced exactly the shoddy, politicized report that was expected of them – bleaching away the malfeasance of Clinton, a central figure in the scandal whom they did not even bother to interview.

Mrs. Clinton is a master of this game.

Recall that her top advisor at State was Huma Abedin, a longtime associate of Omar Abdullah Naseef, a rabid Islamic supremacist and financial backer of al Qaeda. For a dozen years, during most of which she was also working for Mrs. Clinton, Abedin worked at Naseef’s Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs – a building block of the joint Saudi regime and Muslim Brotherhood project to promote sharia enclaves in the West, encouraging Muslims to resist assimilation. {Huma Abedin is married to Anthony Weiner]

Abedin had begun working for then-First Lady Hillary Clinton in the nineties, while a member of the executive board of the Muslim Studentshuma-abedin-gi Association (MSA) at George Washington University. Founded in the early sixties, the MSA is first building block of the Brotherhood’s American infrastructure, and its GWU chapter has quite a history: In 2001, its “spiritual guide” was Anwar al-Awlaki, the al-Qaeda operative who was then ministering to some of the eventual 9/11 suicide-hijackers. As Patrick Poole has demonstrated, it was in the MSA that Awlaki first cut his Islamic supremacist teeth – as have a number of prominent Islamists, including (to name just two) Mohamed Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood stalwart turned Egyptian president, and Abdurrahman Alamoudi, a now convicted al Qaeda financier who was a favorite “moderate” Muslim leader of the Clinton and George W. Bush administrations.

Abedin continued at Naseef’s journal until moving to the State Department with Secretary Clinton in 2009. Naseef, a wealthy, well-connected Saudi, was secretary general of the Muslim World League, perhaps the most significant Saudi-Brotherhood collaboration in the world. In addition to founding the journal, Naseef also started the Rabita Trust, a formally designated international terrorist organization. His partner in that venture was Wael Jalaidan, a founding member of al Qaeda who -whaddya know! - ran the MSA chapter in Arizona. The Rabita Trust that was an important funding source for Osama bin Laden. Ms. Abedin’s close tie to Naseef stems from the fact that he is the patron of her parents – Muslim Brotherhood operatives both. Abedin’s mother, Dr. Saleha Mahmood Abedin, is a close associate not only of Naseef but of top Muslim Brotherhood sharia jurist, Sheikh Yusuf al-Qaradawi. In fact, Dr. Abedeen runs an organization, the International Islamic Committee for Woman and Child, that is part of Qaradawi’s Union of Good. Formally designated as an international terrorist organization, the Union of Good is a major supporter of Hamas.

Five conservative Republican members of the House had the gumption to ask why a person with Ms. Abedin’s alarming connections to prominent Islamic supremacists would be given a high-echelon State Department job, performance of which requires a security clearance granting access to top-secret intelligence. Based on Abedin and other officials with disturbing Islamist ties, the five members asked for inspector-general investigations into Muslim Brotherhood penetration of our government.

In response, Secretary Clinton deftly called out the Washington establishment’s Republican guard. Senator John McCain, House Speaker John Boehner, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers, and other top GOP figures obliged, dutifully lambasting the House conservatives. Nothing to see here – just “a few unspecified and unsubstantiated associations,” twaddled McCain. Boehner, who conceded that he did “not know Huma” and had not read the House conservatives’ letters, nevertheless assured Americans that Abedin had a “sterling character” and that the accusations “were pretty dangerous.”

Clearly, the administration, including the President and Secretary Clinton, knew the compound was under terrorist attack from the early stages of the September 11 siege. Yet, they took no meaningful action to protect and defend the Americans there. Furthermore, there are grounds to believe the command chain may actually have prevented a forceful response, ordering special forces to stand down while the attack raged.

That remains to be established. What we do know is that, at a minimum, Obama was inexcusably derelict in failing even to attempt to overcome Libyan intransigence. At the airport in Benghazi, officials of the new Libyan government – the one Obama brought to power – obstructed the few brave Americans who desperately tried to come to the rescue, delaying them for over three hours. Put aside the commander-in-chief’s failure to deploy U.S. military assets (discussed by Jed Babbin, here); Obama never even picked up the phone to cut through the red Libyan tape. Then, in the days and weeks that followed, top administration officials serially lied to the American people. The president and his underlings repeatedly claiming the lethal jihadist attack – which, as Steve Hayes has meticulously detailed, they mendaciously downgraded to a “demonstration” – had been a spontaneous protest over an obscure video demeaning Islam’s prophet.

As the White House knew from the first, the Benghazi Massacre was a coordinated terrorist attack involving al Qaeda-affiliated jihadists who used mortars and other high-power weapons. Alas, the attack occurred in the stretch-run of the presidential campaign. Obama had staked his reelection on the claims that he had decimated al Qaeda; that he had prudently intervened against Qaddafi for the benefit of freedom-craving Muslim moderates; and that he was bringing the war on terror to a successful conclusion. An al Qaeda attack against America in Benghazi, the heart of the anti-Qaddafi jihad empowered by Obama’s heedless Libya War, puts the lie to this fairy tale. Consequently, the White House plainly decided (a) not to respond forcefully to the jihadist attack lest it look like what it was – a jihadist attack; and (b) to obscure the truth, and run out the 2012 campaign clock, with the preposterous video canard.

The jihadist slaughter of our ambassador and three other Americans is sotimthumb grave, though, that the White House and its media cannot kill the story. As the drip, drip, drip of revelations illustrates administration malevolence and incompetence, Secretary Clinton seeks out Pickering and Mullen, two old reliable hands who, much like herself and her president, refuse to see any nexus between Muslim scripture and jihadist violence, support the policy of empowering Islamic supremacists, think the real security threat is Islamophobia, and have a history of overlooking inconvenient facts.

What a surprise that Pickering and Mullen should conduct an embarrassment of an investigation that fails to interview key witnesses (including, of course, Mrs. Clinton), and that fails to grapple with key events – like the infamous Susan Rice “talking points” that became increasingly fraudulent precisely because Clinton’s State Department kept pressing for more massaging of the facts.

What a surprise that, even as the predictably shoddy Pickering-Mullen report is now itself being investigated over its breathtaking omissions and spin, the Obama administration continues to tout it as “unimpeachable” bipartisan gospel.

It is a cynical strategy, but it’s been known to work.”

The intelligence community's initial briefing included a bit of nonsense about protests in Benghazi inspired by the contemporaneous protests in Cairo - which, let us recall, originally had nothing to do with the notorious YouTube video Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama would eventually portray as the primary cause of a "spontaneous protest" that got out of hand in Libya. But as we learned this week, all of that confusion could have been cleared up with a quick phone call to deputy mission chief Gregory Hicks in Tripoli, who testified he and his team were never under any illusions that the Benghazi consulate was trashed in a random riot.

Instead, political operatives at the State Department — notably spokeswoman Victoria Nuland — worked hard to inject ever greater amounts of confusion into the talking points, while vigorously scrubbing out hard data about terrorist involvement. The results astonished, and horrified, everyone from Hicks to CIA Director David Petraeus when the Administration trotted them out for the Sunday talk shows.

There's no doubt all of this leads directly back to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and it stretches credulity to imagine the White House wasn't involved as well. The American people were lied to, and the media uncritically repeated those lies. It's a bit late for them to get critical now, but better late than never. Let's see if their criticism endures long enough to push this story into water-cooler conversation.

The testimony of the State Department whistle-blowers indicts the president, the secretary of state and administration minions of incompetence and lying to the public about what happened before, during and after the Benghazi attacks. Supporters of the Obama regime describe the three as "politically motivated" and claim there is "nothing new" in what they said. That's not true, either. Herewith, a few important facts we now know thanks to the courage of these three men:

Though radical Islamists routinely use anniversaries to motivate adherents to violence, the Obama administration did absolutely nothing to anticipate such a possibility by prepositioning quick-reaction military forces in the Middle East prior to the attacks. Worse, instead of granting Ambassador Stevens' repeated requests for additional security assets, the O-Team actually reduced U.S. security personnel in Libya. This abysmal failure reflects, inter alia, a nearly total deficit of human intelligence. The ambassador and three other Americans paid for this misfeasance with their lives.

In the midst of the deadly attacks in Benghazi, bureaucratic inertia and infighting in Washington prevented any response that might have saved lives. In the aftermath, the Obama administration insulted the Libyan government by rebutting its assertion that the perpetrators were radical Islamists. The result: More than two weeks passed before FBI agents could visit the scene of the crime.

Since the attacks, they have been probed by five separate committees of Congress. The State Department's Accountability Review Board is, at best, a whitewash. Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va., and more than 140 of his colleagues have called for a bipartisan select committee of both houses to fully investigate the matter. Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham support the proposal. It's time — unless Congress wants to participate in a cover-up.

Epilogue:

I have just finished watching a White House press conference with J. Carney, President Obama’s press secretary and mouth piece. For the first time since his appointment Carney has had to dance and spin to the onslaught of hard-hitting questions from the White House press corps. Since Wednesday’s hearing and the release of the edited talking points released by ABC today. He tried to throw the CIA under the bus for changing the Benghazi talking points and constantly blaming the Republicans — even to the point of dragging Mitt Romney into the conversation. I don’t think too many of the reporters were buying what Carney was saying as they kept coming back to the issue of the talking points. This scandal will not go quietly into the night as the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton desire. They should go back and review tapes of press conferences prior to and during the Watergate hearings to see how these things can snowball out of control once the press smells blood. All we need now is deep throat.

Joseph diGenova, attorney for acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Counterterrorism Mark Thompson, did not specify how many new witnesses there were, but said they had been “on the ground” and “in the fight” during the September assault that left four Americans dead. Thompson was one of three whistleblowers who went before the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday.

“We’ve been contacted by some people on the ground who were there, who were in the fight, who want to come forward but who fear if they do they will never get contract work with the agency again,” diGenova told TheBlaze Radio host Jay Severin on Thursday. “We are going to test the director of central intelligence’s word [that those who testify will not be penalized]. If these people decide they want to come forward, the first thing we’re going to do is go to the director’s office and say here they are, how are you going to protect them?”

DiGenova suggested there are more hearings on Benghazi to come, saying lawmakers “crossed the Rubicon yesterday, there’s no turning back” after Wednesday’s congressional hearing.

Assuming that there will be more rounds of congressional hearings I hope the following people are subpoenaed and sworn in to testify under oath.They all are implicated in the failure to provide support for the Ambassador or the subsequent cover-up – virtual rouge’s gallery people who need to testify under oath.

Hillary-Clinton-testifies-011  Susan_Rice,_official_State_Dept_photo_portrait,_2009Cheryl_D._Mills

  1. Left: Hillary Clinton: Former Secretary of State
  2. Center: Susan Rice: Former Ambassador to the U.N.
  3. Right: Cheryl D. Mills: Chief of Staff for Hillary Clinton and passionate supporter of Hillary Clinton and the person who ordered Gregory Hicks to keep his mouth shut.

Victoria_Nuland_State_Department   480px-Patrick-F-Kennedy_2002 (1)   ben_rhodes

  • Left:Victoria Nuland: Spokesperson for the State Department, edited the talking points
  • Center: Patrick Kennedy: U.S. State Department's Under Secretary of State for Management
  • Right: Ben Rhodes: Deputy National Security Advisor for Communication for President Obama
  • 480px-Michael_Mullen,_CJCS,_official_photo_portrait,_2007  ThomasRPickering DCIA_David_Petraeus
  • Left:Adm. Mike Mullen: Former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and co-chair of the State Department’s Accountability Review Board on Benghazi
  • Center:Thomas Pickering: Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and co-chair of the State Department’s Accountability Review Board on Benghazi
  • Right:David Petraeus: Former Director of the CIA. Was he complicit in the editing of the original talking points. Did he brief Romney on the weapons transfers to Turkey for the Syrian rebels?

480px-Leon_Panetta,_official_DoD_photo_portrait,_2011 Michael_Morell,_December_2012 480px-GEN_Carter_F.Ham_2011

  1. Left: Leon Panetta: Secretary of Defense
  2. Center:Michael Morrell: Deputy CIA Director.He was furious over the edits to the CIA’s original talking points.
  3. Right:General Carter Ham: Former Commander of U.S. Africa Command – Relieved of his Command for attempting to send a Ready Reaction Force to relive the embattled defenders of the Benghazi compound. Did Panetta or Joint Chief of Staff Dempsey order Ham to “stand Down” and Ham subsequently ordered Lt. Col. Gibson to stand down. This question must be answered for the benefit of the families of the four dead Americans.

 

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  1. Left: Jay Carney: White House Press Secretary and Obama spin doctor
  2. Center: Lt. Col. Gibson: The highest ranking military officer in Tripoli who was ready to provide aid to Benghazi, but was ordered to “stand down”
  3. Right: Martin Dempsey: Chairman of The Joint Chief Of Staff. Did he issue the stand down order?

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