Monday, October 12, 2015

The Benghazi Witch Hunt — GOP Needs a New Name: Get Outta Power

U.S. Mission After the Sep 2012 Attack
(Photo: Gianluigi Guercia/AFP/GettyImages)

RIGHT UP FRONT:  Some key fact about Benghazi to date. It has been investigated by these:

1.  The Independent State Department Accountability Review Board,
2.  The Senate Intelligence Committee,
3.  The Senate Armed Services Committee,
4.  The House Intelligence Committee,
5.  The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee,
6.  The House Armed Services Committee,
7.  The House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform,
8.  The House Committee on Foreign Affairs. 

Q:  How many have uncovered evidence of any Obama/White House/DEM/or Clinton cover-up? 

A.  None, Nada, Nil, Zero, Zilch, Naught, Goose Egg. Yet the GOP has another “select committee” now on-going that is run by Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) in the same  Issa-style witch hunt with HILLARY being their #1 target hunt for that witch!!!… (Note: don’t think so? Ha… ask Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) who spilled the beans and then quickly took himself out of the running for speaker as Boehner prepares to step down and then retire from Congress … DEMS and others like me have been correct all along).

Now this more comprehensive look back from

(1) What is the Benghazi controversy? The controversy has centered on Republican accusations that the Obama administration did not take heed of intelligence warnings before the attack, that during the attack it refused to call in available military support, and that after the attack it deliberately covered up what had happened. Repeated independent investigations have disproved all of these allegations (refer back to th list of investigations above).  
(2) What actually happened in Benghazi on September 11, 2012? (Review the timeline time at the link) – it is quite detailed.  
(3) Who were the attackers, and why did they do it?  The attackers were an informal group of Islamist fighters from an assortment of local Libyan militias; a number came from an extremist group called Ansar al-Sharia; and, few had ties to al-Qaeda. But this was no carefully preplanned attack. It was much more spontaneous — and in some ways a product of Libya's chaos.
(4) Could the Obama administration have stopped the attack?  The attack was too spontaneous, for the reasons described above, for US intelligence to see this specific incident coming. But what about once it had begun? One of the biggest myths about Benghazi is that the US had military assets in range — but refused to deploy them. “Military personnel were ready, willing, and able, and within proximity, but the Pentagon told them they had no authority and to stand down,” Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) said in 2013. This is flatly false. The bipartisan Senate Intelligence report, perhaps the most comprehensive review of the attack, found that “there were no US military resources in position to intervene in short order in Benghazi to help defend the Temporary Mission Facility and its Annex.”  
(5) What's the “Susan Rice talking points” controversy? Did the White House hide the truth about Benghazi?  The "talking points" in question are the official administration talking points, from just after the attack, on how to describe what had happened. Susan Rice, then the US ambassador to the UN, used these talking points when she appeared on Sunday talk shows that week.  Rice claimed, in her appearances, that the attack had grown out of a spontaneous protest against the anti-Islam film Innocence of Muslims. She didn't make this up; it was the CIA's assessment at the time. But this claim turned out to be wrong. While some of the attackers really were incensed by the film, closed circuit footage from the diplomatic building showed that there was no protest.
(6) What have the investigations into Benghazi found?  Nine different bodies have investigated Benghazi: the State Department's Accountability Review Board and eight separate congressional committees or staff reports. All of them, aside from the House Select Committee, have completed investigations. Each has identified problems with the way the incident was handled, but none have uncovered real evidence of an administration cover-up or failure to properly respond to the attacks. 
(7) See contents of this point at the link – some sort of “cute song.” 
(8) If there's no evidence of a cover-up or wrongdoing, why are Republicans still looking into this? Republicans' interest in Benghazi isn't just cynical politics (although there is for sure some of that). Conservatives have long seen Obama as a feckless, incompetent liar — the idea that he failed to prevent a terrorist attack, then covered it up, fits with their preexisting beliefs. The fact that independent reporting vindicated the administration didn't help, as conservatives see the mainstream media as hopelessly in the tank for the president. So long as conservative leaders argue there's a scandal here, some Republicans will continue believing that more investigations are necessary.  
(9) What does this have to do with the Hillary Clinton email scandal and the House speaker election? In May 2014, House Speaker John Boehner set up the House Select Committee on Benghazi. The committee, for its investigation, asked the State Department to turn over emails Clinton had sent to her aides about the attack. Some of those emails turned out to have been sent from Clinton's private email account — which, according to the New York Times, is how Clinton's use of a private email server for official State Department business first came to light. That's become a big campaign scandal for her. Then, in a September 29 appearance on Fox News, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy seemed to admit something that Republicans aren't supposed to say — that the real purpose of the Benghazi Select Committee is to hurt Clinton's campaign.  
The GOP witch hunt at this point (and attempts to smear Hillary Clinton) are as a pitiful as that image of the burned out Mission in Benghazi photo above ... in short as they say: "There ain't no there, there."

No comments: