News & Politics

The Curious Case of the Missing Iranian Nuke Talks Video at the State Department

Deputy National Security Adviser For Strategic Communications Ben Rhodes (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

A key section from a video of a State Department press briefing from 2013 was restored Tuesday after Fox News’ James Rosen reported that it went missing.

In that segment, former State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki seemed to suggest that the government lied about when the Iran nuclear talks began — a point that was highlighted by national security consultant David Reaboi in a report in The Federalist Monday. Reaboi wrote that “national security fabulist” Ben Rhodes helped President Obama dupe Americans into accepting the dangerous Iranian nuke deal with “lies and the denials about the negotiations.”

It took months before a few dogged journalists started to ask questions about the talks Obama officials were engaged in with Ahmadinejad’s regime. In February 2013, then-State Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland flatly denied “direct, secret bilateral talks with Iran.” Republicans on Capitol Hill were nervous about the rumors, but the media was willing to accept the State Department’s denial. The secret negotiations with Iran also alarmed America’s allies in Jerusalem, who had also been kept in the dark about their closest ally’s clandestine meetings with their most potent adversary.

Nuland’s successor, Jen Psaki, would later admit that, as Fox’s James Rosen reported, “the meetings stretched back to 2011.”

The State Department has no idea how it happened, but at some point, that key exchange between Psaki and Rosen curiously went missing. James Rosen drew attention to the deleted exchange on Special Report Monday evening.

Next page: See the video that temporarily went missing.

On Tuesday morning, an unedited version of the video, which appears to be the original, magically reappeared on the State Department website.

“I think their first instinct was to doctor the record to prevent the media and Iran Deal opponents from a clear ‘gotcha,'” Reaboi told PJ Media. “Sometime later, it occurred to them that their antics would generate more, unfavorable attention, and they scrambled to fix it. Utter chaos.”

The Obama administration’s Stalinist-level propaganda never looked so obvious and incompetent. No wonder the beltway media (AKA the White House “echo chamber”) is hopping mad. No, not at Ben Rhodes, the White House’s Chief Propagandist, but at David Samuels, the NYT journalist who brought this all out and made them all look like such willing dupes.