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Today in the Benghazi Debacle: ABC News Not Looking So Hot

May 14, 2013

O.M.G! Did you hear what happened in Benghazigate today?!?!Oh my, it looks as though ABC News was carrying someone’s water, whether they knew it or not. Just four days ago, ABC’s Jonathon Karl was the big man on campus with his “bombshell” story  that the Obama administration scrambled in the wake of the Benghazi attack, revising talking points memos 12 times, and scrubbing them of any reference to terrorism. Karl’s source(s) provided him with damning emails contradicting what the administration has publicly said. For instance:

In an email dated 9/14/12 at 9:34 p.m. — three days after the attack and two days before Ambassador Rice appeared on the Sunday shows – Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes wrote an email saying the State Department’s concerns needed to be addressed.

“We must make sure that the talking points reflect all agency equities, including those of the State Department, and we don’t want to undermine the FBI investigation.  We thus will work through the talking points tomorrow morning at the Deputies Committee meeting.” (ABC News)

Wow. That looks pretty bad. Looks like Rhodes was more concerned with covering the State Department’s ass than with getting to the truth. Except that today Jake Tapper from CNN has obtained the actual email which “differs from how sources inaccurately quoted and paraphrased it in previous accounts to different media organizations.” Compare:

“All –

“Sorry to be late to this discussion. We need to resolve this in a way that respects all of the relevant equities, particularly the investigation.

“There is a ton of wrong information getting out into the public domain from Congress and people who are not particularly informed. Insofar as we have firmed up assessments that don’t compromise intel or the investigation, we need to have the capability to correct the record, as there are significant policy and messaging ramifications that would flow from a hardened mis-impression.

“We can take this up tomorrow morning at deputies.”

Well that doesn’t appear to be the same thing at all!

Whoever provided those quotes seemingly invented the notion that Rhodes wanted the concerns of the State Department specifically addressed. While Nuland, particularly, had expressed a desire to remove mentions of specific terrorist groups and CIA warnings about the increasingly dangerous assignment, Rhodes put no emphasis at all in his e-mail on the State Department’s concerns.

Previous reporting also misquoted Rhodes as saying the group would work through the talking points at the deputies meeting on Saturday, September 15, when the talking points to Congress were finalized. While the previously written subject line of the e-mail mentions talking points, Rhodes only addresses misinformation in a general sense.

So whoever leaked the inaccurate information earlier this month did so in a way that made it appear that the White House – specifically Rhodes – was more interested in the State Department’s concerns, and more focused on the talking points, than the e-mail actually stated.

It would seem the Benghazi leaks are not all they’re cracked up to be. Who woulda thunk it?

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. SoSoU permalink
    May 15, 2013 7:50 pm

    They have just released a hundred new emails about Benghazi. Though it does clarify somethings it also contradicts others.

    At this point the best why to address this is to release all the documents pertaining to Benghazi and have full disclosure. Without that your never going to completely answer all the questions raised or be able to lay this to rest.

    Recently released documents do not clear up who told Rice to make such statements or whether it was of her own volition.

    What the new e-mails reveal is that the CIA and FBI were discussing if what was written was clear to go to congress. The STATE DEPT had many objections and PUSHED for REVISIONS NOT THE CIA..

    There is a statement by Nuland “does not resolve all my issues”.

  2. SoSoU permalink
    May 15, 2013 12:20 am

    You would have to discount everything since then and there’s a lot; whistle-blowers; terrorist video; a 2:00 a.m phone call telling Hillary it was a terrorist attack; CIA warnings; stand down orders; Congress not being informed; (still asking questions )
    Intimidation’s. The investigation itself that did not interview all personal even those that requested it.

    If the concern was that congress was providing the public with misinformation which was not the case since it was Rice who was doing the Sunday talk show circuit. They should have corrected that immediately. Which leads to who sent Rice out there with the misinformation?

    ” don’t compromise intel or the investigation, we need to have the capability to correct the record,”

    How much time did they need to correct this? Obviously it should have been on the 15th after Rice misguided the nation.

    Since the answers to so many of these questions were not made available at the beginning we ended up having more. They would have to disclose all the documents to get a clear understanding of what took place and now we cannot so easily dismiss what we have recently learned within the past few weeks.

    This does not excuse telling the parents of those killed that an anti-Muslim u-tube video caused a spontaneous attack that was never corrected.

  3. May 14, 2013 7:31 pm

    So whoever leaked the inaccurate information earlier this month did so in a way that made it appear that the White House – specifically Rhodes – was more interested in the State Department’s concerns, and more focused on the talking points, than the e-mail actually stated.

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