Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

June 16, 2014

STUMPTALK: White House obstruction of justice

By Ted La Vaque
Chronicle contributor

CROSSVILLE — It is clear now that talking point memos regarding the Sept. 11, 2012, Benghazi murders, used to prepare Susan Rice for her marathon appearances on five Sunday news programs, were circulated to multiple federal agencies (State Department, CIA, White House) for input. We now know that the administration was very concerned that the narrative should relieve the Obama administration of any responsibility for abandoning the Ambassador Chris Stevens, information officer Sean Smith and Navy Seals Tyrone Woods and Glenn Doherty in a time of mortal need. Specifically, the now famous White House September 14 e-mail sent out by Benjamin Rhodes (the current deputy national security adviser for strategic communication) with the subject line “Prep call with Susan, Saturday at 4:00 P.M. E.T.” emphasized the following:

• To convey that the United States is doing everything we can to protect our people and facilities abroad.

• To underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy.

• To show that we will be resolute in bringing the people who harm Americans to justice, and standing steadfast through these protests.

• To reinforce the President and Administration’s strength and steadfastness in dealing with difficult challenges.

None of the bullet points are true. So, we see that the word “narrative” is interpreted by the White House (read, Obama) as meaning “self serving fiction.” It is a fiction that bears no relationship to the facts, and is an obvious attempt to cover the administration. The truth of the matter is that Ambassador Stevens, and his security staff, had made several requests to the State Department to beef up security, each of which was denied. The American facility had been attacked in the previous weeks, once having a large explosion breach the wall to the Benghazi facility. All other national facilities in Benghazi had been closed for security concerns, as had the Red Cross. The Americans were the only ones left hung out to dry.

The State Department and Obama did nothing to protect the personnel they knowingly sent into harm's way. They did nothing to protect their people and facilities. The issue of the Internet video as a causative event has certainly been debunked, so by their own logic (see bullet point 2) that leaves only the broader failed Obama policy headed by then Secretary of State “what difference does it make” Hillary Clinton.

Consider his third point. CNN was able to interview one of the attackers for two hours in northern Libya back in July of 2013. Guess CNN is more resolute than Obama’s White House. Obama wants the attackers arrested and tried in civil court. As I remember, an attack on an ambassador or consulate can be considered to be an act of war. Well, not Obama. An Obama spokesman, Tommy Vietor, who was present at the White House and participated in the writing of the talking points famously explained his memory failure to Brett Baier in a news interview, “Dude, that was two years ago.” However, he did remember that he was present in the situation room but Obama was not. In fact, there has been no report of Obama’s activity in the White House during the slaughter of his ambassador in Benghazi. He was prepared the next day for a political money trip to Las Vegas, however. 

I am writing this in early May. As I write this, it is being reported that a congressional Select Committee is being formed to finally investigate the Benghazi attacks and the White House cover-up in systematic detail. The Democrats are already frothing and threatening to boycott the hearings as though there is a statute of limitations on investigating political moral corruption. They want to claim it is all a partisan Republican activity. Move along, move along, nothing to see here.