It should be the biggest story in the world, and if the incumbent President was a Republican, you can bet your bottom YouTube video that it would be: Eli Lake of the Daily Beast reports that ‚??Within 24 hours of the 9-11 anniversary attack on the United States consulate in Benghazi, U.S. intelligence agencies had strong indications al Qaeda‚??affiliated operatives were behind the attack, and had even pinpointed the location of one of those attackers.‚?Ě
Three separate sources confirmed to Lake that ‚??early information was enough to show that the attack was planned and the work of al-Qaeda affiliates operating in Eastern Libya.‚?Ě¬† The Libyans have been saying that all along, with an increasingly exasperated President Mohammed Magarief insisting once again, during an NBC News interview aired Wednesday, that the Benghazi attack was ‚??a preplanned act of terrorism directed at American citizens,‚?Ě conceived months ago but delayed to coincide with the September 11 anniversary.
Magarief repeated that the ‚??Innocence of Muslims‚?Ě YouTube video, blamed consistently and repeatedly by the Administration for causing a protest that escalated into the murder of the American ambassador and three of his staff, ‚??had nothing to do with this attack.‚?Ě
There is no way to spin this, no way to pretty it up, no way to interpret it through any lens that would make Obama and his team look better.¬† They willfully, aggressively, repeatedly lied to the American people about events in Benghazi.¬† As Lake points out, as recently as last Sunday, Obama adviser Robert Gibbs claimed that the Administration narrative was still evolving due to new information.
And U.N. ambassador Susan Rice was marched onto every TV show in America to insist That Damned Video was the cause of all the ‚??spontaneous‚?Ě violence.¬† When specifically asked about the Benghazi attack on Fox News, Rice stated, ‚??This was not a pre-planned, pre-meditated attack.¬† What happened initially was a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired in Cairo as a consequence of the video. People gathered outside the embassy and then it grew very violent. People with extremist ties joined the fray and came with heavy weapons – which, unfortunately, are quite common in post-revolutionary Libya – and that then spun out of control.‚?Ě
That was a false statement.¬† The Administration knew it was a false statement.¬† What are we going to get from Obama apologists now ‚?? a load of bunk about how Susan Rice is an out-of-control loose cannon who speaks for no one but herself?¬† How empty does that chair in the Oval Office have to get?
Congressional hearings into the Administration‚??s conduct are planned.¬† It is absolutely inexcusable for the media to blow this off.¬† The reasons for Administration mendacity are obvious ‚?? they desperately needed to crawl through a few news cycles without answering tough questions about why Ambassador Stevens and his people were left so completely unprotected, in the face of obvious danger.¬† This is a titanic scandal, not a couple of confused mis-statements from random spokespeople.