Hillary Clinton has characterized Sidney Blumenthal as “an old friend” who gave her “unsolicited emails” which she passed on “in some instances” as just “part of the give and take.”
But an exclusive copy of one of the emails obtained by National Review show her friend advising her on foreign policy in Libya during the fall of dictator Moammar Qaddafi. What’s more, the email shows her confidante to be embarrassingly sycophantic, and concerned about her legacy. Worst of all, it helps explain how the State Department came to be so disturbingly off the mark in their rosy projections for what quickly became a complete debacle.
Blumenthal e-mailed a list of talking points to Clinton the day after rebel forces captured Tripoli, prefaced by a congratulatory statement exhorting the former presidential candidate to make sure she received credit for the U.S. intervention in Libya. The message was only recently provided by Blumenthal to the congressional panel investigating the Benghazi terrorist attacks, despite Clinton’s previous assurance that she had turned over “all” her correspondence pertaining to Libya.
“First, brava! This is a historic moment and you will be credited for realizing it,” he wrote in the August 22, 2011 memo to Clinton. “When Qaddafi himself is finally removed, you should of course make a public statement before the cameras wherever you are, even in the driveway of your vacation house. You must go on camera. You must establish yourself in the historical record at this moment. The most important phrase is ‘successful strategy.’”
Hillary, it should be remembered, is not above using foreign policy for strictly political purposes. As former Secretary of State, Henry Gates noted in his memoir, Hillary once laughingly admitted during a meeting with him and President Obama, she opposed the surge in Iraq in 2007 because she was facing the anti-Iraq war candidate Obama in the primary.
So it’s should be no surprise that Clinton took Blumenthal’s advice to “establish herself in the historical record,” during a trip to Tripoli in October of 2011.
“I am proud to stand here on the soil of a free Libya,” she said during the trip. “The opportunity now in Libya is to not only chart a new future for Libyans but to stand as a model for democracy and freedom.” The statement comports with Blumenthal’s suggestion that Clinton emphasize that the Libyan intervention “helped advance the cause of democracy and freedom throughout the Arab world.”
Blumenthal also advised Clinton to tie the Libyan intervention to the effort to topple Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad.
“We have put Assad on notice that the sands of time have run out for him as well,” he wrote in the talking points. Clinton did not make such a claim in the battery of interviews she conducted during the Libya trip, but she waged an internal struggle from 2011 to 2012 to persuade President Obama to back the Syrian rebels. (He refused, but Blumenthal must have appreciated Obama’s statement that the death of Qaddafi signaled to the Middle East that “the rule of an iron fist inevitably comes to an end.”) Blumenthal concluded with a flourish, invoking the ancient Greek goddess who functioned as the Muse of History. “This is a very big moment historically and for you,” he wrote. “History will tell your part in it. You are vindicated. But don’t wait, help Clio now.”
And that was that. Hillary’s work was done. She had secured her place in history – or so she thought. With no plan to deal with the repercussions, the country soon fell into chaos and became a playground for terrorists – including ISIS. Libya is now considered to be a failed state.
Chairman of the Select Committee on Benghazi, Trey Gowdy appeared on the Kelly File to discuss the emails Wednesday night following Blumenthal’s deposition.