FOOD FIGHT – AT 11:38 A.M. ET: If the administration believed it could shut up David Petraeus by humiliating him and forcing him out, they were wrong. Indeed, he apparently seemed to feel liberated when he testified before Congress on Friday. Now the Obamans are taking him on. I have to wonder whether they're threatening him privately with further punishment over his affair with Paula Broadwell. From the New York Post:
The White House yesterday denied it edited talking points about the terrorist attack that killed the American ambassador to Libya — contradicting remarks made a day earlier by disgraced ex-CIA chief David Petraeus.
“The only edit that was made by the White House and also by the State Department was to change the word ‘consulate’ to the word ‘diplomatic facility,’ since the facility in Benghazi was not formally a consulate,” Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes told reporters aboard Air Force One.
“Other than that, we were guided by the points that were provided by the intelligence community. So I can’t speak to any other edits that may have been made.”
Petraeus on Friday told lawmakers that from the onset of the investigation about the Sept. 11 attack, US intelligence pointed to al Qaeda affiliates.
The former four-star general, who resigned from the CIA Nov. 9 due to an affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell, said the unclassified talking points were later revised to omit any mention of al Qaeda.
The edits would have been made after the statements had left the CIA for review by the Defense and State departments, ultimately landing at the White House.
But instead of relaying what the CIA initially reported, UN Ambassador Susan Rice repeatedly insisted the attack was a spontaneous protest spurred by an American-made video depicting Prophet Mohammed as a pedophile.
“The main question today is that somebody briefed Susan Rice and she said she took the best information that the intelligence community had,” said Rep. Peter King (R-LI), a member of the House Intelligence Committee, probing the botched response. “Now we’re trying to put all the pieces together.”
But he added, “It’s going to be a long process before we find out anything else.”
The Benghazi attack killed US Ambassador Chris Stevens, Foreign Service officer Sean Smith and CIA employees Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods.
COMMENT: Obviously, not everyone is telling the truth here. It is a grave matter if, as it appears, a national security matter was distorted to improve the president's political prospects. Obama, you'll recall, had used as a major plank in his campaign the argument that he had pretty much destroyed Al Qaeda.
As Rep. King says, this will be a long investigative process. During Watergate, the press assisted because it hated then-President Nixon. But the press today is an Obama admiration society, and is doing little or nothing to get at the truth. Already The New York Times, an Obama groupie, is arguing that the Republicans are just coming up with conspiracy theories, when in fact they've come up with critical details that raise serious questions about the administration's competence and integrity.
Don't let this go away.
November 18, 2012