Why lie about Benghazi attack?
Team Obama insists it was led astray by the CIA and that the White House was deaf and blind about the coordinated terrorist strike in Libya on Sept. 11, believing intelligence assessments that the attack was merely a protest that got out of hand.
But the claim is looking shakier than ever: Turns out the administration had eyes and ears in Benghazi the entire time.
Their eyes? During the attack, an unarmed Predator drone was flying over the city, watching the events in real time.
Their ears? According to reporter Eli Lake, “The State Department, monitoring the phone calls from the consulate’s operations center, knew virtually from the first minutes . . . that the attack on the consulate was no protest gone astray.”
Though administration officials would spend days blaming the strike on an obscure filmmaker, basic facts were already clear to the White House at that early hour.
“When a major CIA outpost nearby came under attack . . . there was little doubt about that being an operation by well-trained terrorists,” Lake reported.
Which suggests two possibilities:
One, that Team Obama has been lying like a rug.
Two, that the US intelligence establishment is utterly broken.
Trouble is, both possibilities may be true.
The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that the CIA’s daily briefing for Obama as late as Sept. 21 said that the attack grew out of a spontaneous protest over a video that mocked the prophet Mohammed.
But the claim was based in large part on a conversation intercepted between al Qaeda members and allied terrorists in Libya.Both the CIA and the administration had good reasons to blame a mob of movie critics and not the terrorist. If it was a spontaneous attack all the previous warnings of a dangerous security situation would not be as relevant. If it was in fact a planned terrorist attack, then all the red flags that were ignored leading up to the attack would become evidence of a failure of analysis and a failure to respond for help from an exposed American operation. If the CIA operation in Benghazi was the main target that would also be a reason to conclude it was a terrorist operation. Perhaps they did not want to admit this.
But, you can ignore the obvious only so long. The facts just do not support their narrative. If the CIA was still reporting this as a mob of movie crits attack our consulate 10 days after teh attack, then the President was ill served. Still, he should have been proactive in raising the questions that were already being raised in the media.