Over the weekend, the New York Times was once again the recipient of intelligence leaks that were designed to make the Obama administration look good. The Duranty Times spoke with “half a dozen” US officials who try building a case that the CIA took until Sept 22 to determine that the Benghazi attack did not begin with a movie protest, and that is why President Obama, Ambassador Susan Rice and other administration officials mischaracterized the attack.
The Times was by no means alone. The same sources apparently leaked the Obama positive view to other papers in a coordinated attempt to push the scandal back across the weekend leading up to the final presidential debate.
Rep. Mike Rogers appeared on Fox today with Martha MacCallum to question the leaks and examine the administration’s motives for attempting to change the story on Benghazi, again.
MACCALLUM: One of those reports came out of the Wall Street Journal. It suggested that there was not, the CIA did not see this as an organized attack until September the 22nd. now that would provide some cover for president obama in, you know, sort of pedalling a — pedaling a couple different ways on this, would it not.
ROGERS: It sure would. Here is the problem. You had an IED attack at the consulate a month before. All of our threat streams coming in before 9/11, al Qaeda, al Qaeda in the Maghreb were looking for western targets on the 9/11 anniversary. Here is the troubling thing. Within 12 hours of that incident the intelligence committee received a report that said this was a military or militia style event, which would contradict what they were talking about. What is so frustrating to me over the weekend you see these US, anonymous US officials or intelligence officials leaking time lines, even leaking certain pieces of information that was requested by the committee, and all of it seems to put the administration in a good light. Very frustrating for those of us trying to truly get to the bottom of it, find the facts. I think americans deserve the truth on this. What is disturbing is our initial blush looking at these documents shows lots of contradictions and both analytical and intelligence product that would not support this rock solid, it was spontaneous, it was the video, and nine days later causing them to use US taxpayer money to buy television ads in pakistan, relating it to the video, which i argue exacerbated the problem. It was really quite something. It is really frustrating to watch them go through this.
The Obama campaign/administration’s motive for the leaks is clear enough. For days after the attack happened, they sold a story that they thought would get them past the election. That story was that the attack on 9-11 was not an attack. For al Qaeda to be seen launching deadly attacks on the US presence in Libya would blow a hole in the campaign/administration’s story that al Qaeda is “on the run,” and secondarily, that the intervention in Libya had made things better there. In fact, it may have made things less safe even here and for our allies, if al Qaeda or its allies take power there. Libya’s proximity to Europe and the Mediterranean make it an ideal base for terrorists and pirates. America’s first foreign intervention was to the shores of Tripoli to take on the Barbary pirates menacing American and European sailors in that sea in 1801.
Now that the Obama campaign/administration’s story has been exposed, they’re selectively leaking to the press to contain the damage at least long enough to get past November 6. These leaks are designed to confuse the voters who may not have paid close attention to all of the facts, and give Obama allies in the media something to hang onto for talking points when addressing Benghazi. They also give President Obama some smoke he can try hiding in when Benghazi comes up during the debate. We’ll see how moderator Bob Schieffer deals with the leaks in the context of the total information stream, which is not helpful to Obama’s story.
Getting past the new spin, Schieffer might think to ask a couple of questions. If the CIA was really unsure what led to the attack, then why did Obama et al definitively sell it as starting with a protest?
If it really takes the CIA nearly two weeks to figure out what many, including your humble blogger, knew was a terrorist attack from the start, then don’t we need to fire the head of the CIA and clean house over there? We cannot defend our interests if our leading intelligence agency is so grossly incompetent and riddled with indecision.