The State Department said Tuesday that a “glitch” caused eight minutes of video from a 2013 press briefing to be deleted on its website and YouTube channel. In the missing segment, then State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki seemed to admit that the government lied about when the Iran nuclear talks began, in answer to a question from Fox News’ James Rosen. The original unedited video reappeared on the State Department website Tuesday morning after Rosen drew attention to its disappearance.
“There was a glitch in the State Department video,” spokeswoman Elizabeth Trudeau told dubious reporters yesterday to explain the removal of Psaki’s admission.
James Rosen expressed skepticism about the “glitch” excuse Wednesday afternoon on “The Five.”
“It’s just stunning to me that they think they could get away with this deletion,” he said. “They deleted it not only on their website where they archive all the videos from their briefings, but on the State Department YouTube channel as well.” As for the timing of the sleight of hand, Rosen said that from what he was able to determine, “this was actually the way the briefing was put up three years ago.”
Rosen also said that former spokesperson Victoria Nuland strayed into the “forbidden zone” when she lied “from the podium” earlier in 2013. Nuland had told Rosen that there had not been secret government-to-government talks between the U.S. and Iran. “Those talks were ongoing for over a year at that point,” Rosen said.
It’s okay to spin. We all understand that spinmeisters have been on the White House payroll for 50 years now. But the forbidden zone for the briefer — standing at the podium where the seal of the State Department rests there for the whole world to see, live in real time — the forbidden zone is lying. You’re not allowed to outright deceive from that podium.
The dogged reporter also pointed out that there are also lies about the substance of the Iran deal — not just about the process — coming out of the Obama administration, and those lies continue to this day.
He went on to note that the rest of the White House press corps aren’t buying the “glitch” excuse either. Matt Lee of the Associated Press in particular was “openly sarcastic of this explanation of a glitch,” Rosen said. When asked on Wednesday if they had discovered an explanation yet for the missing tape, the State Department said they’re still looking into it. Rosen added, “They’re just hoping this goes away.”
James Rosen has been a target of the Obama administration in the past. In May of 2013, the Department of Justice seized a portfolio of information about the Fox News correspondent’s conversations and visits as part of an investigation into a possible leak. Michael Clemente, Fox News’ executive vice president of news, said at the time that Rosen “was named a criminal co-conspirator for simply doing his job as a reporter.”