May 9, 2013

TOM BEVAN ON THE BENGHAZI HEARINGS:

Despite Obama’s claim during the second presidential debate that he had called the assault an “act of terror” in a Rose Garden statement the day after it happened (a claim famously supported by moderator Candy Crowley), the truth is that the president used the phrase that day in a generic sense.

It took eight days for White House Press Secretary Jay Carney and Clinton to label the attack an act of terror. Obama was given opportunities to do the same during his Sept. 20/25 television appearances, but he declined.

We did learn at least two new, relevant facts from yesterday’s testimony. One is that Beth Jones, an official in the State Department, sent an email on September 12 bluntly acknowledging terrorists participated in the attacks (“The group that conducted the attacks, Ansar al-Sharia, is affiliated with Islamic terrorists.”) The other is that Hicks said his “jaw dropped” when he heard Rice make her claims about spontaneous protests. Hicks testified that he later confronted her about the comments, and shortly thereafter he was demoted.

So, while we may not have been treated to any “bombshell” revelations Wednesday, the testimony of Thompson, Hicks and Nordstrom and a fair reading of the record leads to an obvious conclusion: The president and his administration clearly misled the public about what happened on Sept. 11, 2012.

And filmmaker Nakoula is still in jail.

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