So let's explain in no uncertain terms why it is

Left trying pretty hard to pretend Benghazi isn’t a scandal

By —— Bio and Archives--May 17, 2013

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Left-wing supporters of the Obama Administration have been trying for months now - but especially hard for the past several weeks - to insist that there is nothing scandalous about Benghazi. Their basic premise is that no one can prove there was political interference directly from the White House in trying to change talking points so as to hide the truth about the Benghazi attack.

And they think they’ve got support from their position in the release of 100 pages worth of Benghazi-related e-mails from the White House yesterday, because, as the Washington Post reports:

The internal debate did not include political interference from the White House, according to the e-mails, which were provided to congressional intelligence committees several months ago.

Since the assault that killed four Americans, including Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, Republicans have accused President Obama and his senior advisers of mischaracterizing the attack, largely to prevent political repercussions during what was then a close reelection campaign.

Much of the Republican concern has focused on whether administration officials acknowledged early enough that an Islamist terrorist organization was behind the attack, rather than groups of protesters participating in anti-American demonstrations that were taking place outside many U.S. diplomatic missions in the Middle East and North Africa.

According to the e-mails and initial CIA-drafted talking points, the agency believed the attack included a mix of Islamist extremists from Ansar al-Sharia, a group affiliated with al-Qaeda, and angry demonstrators.

White House officials did not challenge that analysis, the e-mails show, nor did they object to its inclusion in the public talking points.

This is a very clever attempt to define “scandal” so narrowly that it there’s almost no way the actual facts can qualify. If there isn’t proof that someone in the White House directly ordered the talking points changed, and demonstrably did so for politically reasons, there is no scandal. Move along. Nothing to see here.

Let’s make sure they don’t get away with this.

Benghazi is a scandal for two very basic reasons:

  1. The Obama Administration lied to the public about the nature of the attack. They did not just withhold information so as not to compromise an investigation. They lied. They made up a narrative about a spontaneous uprising prompted by a YouTube video, and spent several days denouncing the guy who made this video. Obama even did so in a speech at the United Nations. All the while, they knew perfectly well that the YouTube video had nothing to do with what happened. It is not terribly important whether dishonest talking points were directed by the White House or the State Department. What matters is that they were dishonest, and both President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton knew they were dishonest, yet they kept repeating them anyway. Just because the released e-mails don’t tell us exactly who took the lead in perpetrating this lie doesn’t make the lie any less scandalous. It just means its origins remain mysterious.
  2. The command structure told U.S. forces who could have helped to stand down, and they have yet to explain why this happened.

Do not let the left get away with this crap where they try to say, “See? The 100 pages of e-mails don’t prove the White House did this or that for this or that reason, ergo, no scandal.”

Just because we haven’t figured out why Obama and Hillary spewed the YouTube video crap doesn’t make it any less scandalous that they did.


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Dan Calabrese -- Bio and Archives | Comments

Dan Calabrese’s column is distributed by HermanCain.com, which can be found at HermanCain

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