October 20, 2012

CONVENIENT NEW REVELATIONS: CIA documents supported Susan Rice’s description of Benghazi attacks. What the CIA reportedly said on September 15: “The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the U.S. Consulate and subsequently its annex. There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations.”

This certainly makes the CIA look bad, at any rate. But notice how the story tries to turn this White House reliance on a bad report by its own intelligence agency into a Romney “misfire.”

UPDATE: Reader Ed Holston emails: “Sure looks like the CIA documents that supported Susan Rice’s description of Benghazi attacks were revised from and at odds with the CIA’s own sources who were reporting from on the ground in Libya to Langley.” He sends this: CIA report at time of Benghazi attack placed blame on militants, sources say: CIA station chief in Libya reported within 24 hours that there was evidence US consulate attack was not carried out by a mob.

Remember when we were told that an Obama Administration would be marked by competence and good communication?

ANOTHER UPDATE: Reader Jim Hicks voices darker suspicions:

That memo raises more serious questions about the cover-up than it answers and does not provide cover for Obama. The information that they supposedly relied on for the memo was an intercept involving an Al Qaida operative. That Al Qaida connection was left out of the memo. More importantly, we know that the CIA knew the day after the attack that it was a terrorist attack and Al Qaida was involved. So why is the administration and CIA circulating the Talking Points memo, which goes to Capitol Hill, on the 15th? This looks more than anything like they were intentional deceiving Congress. Rice/Obama/Ignatius might have had a point if the memo were released on 12th. However, the release of of a memo on the 15th, to Congress, containing assertions everyone in the intelligence community knew to be false, raises the questions of who wrote the memo and who approved it. Obama himself has now claimed he called it a terrorist attack on the 12th. In any event, we know that was the conclusion of the intelligence community on the 12th. So why was he having the CIA lie to Congress on the 15th?

“Lie” is such a harsh word. And there may well have been confusion in the Administration. But they certainly showed no uncertainty or margin for ever in their insistent, and long-running, efforts to blame a YouTube video.

Say, anybody heard from Mr. Nakoula lately?

Related: White House Tries to Write Al Qaeda Out of Libya Story. “If this is the best the Obama administration can offer in its defense, they’re in trouble.”

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