Thursday, May 1, 2014

Jay Carney Digs In Against New Benghazi Email Revelation

I will give credit where credit is due.

White House Press Secretary is so fully committed to The Cause that (In a hypothetical scenario) he would remain in the bunker even as opposing forces converged on the shelled ruins of Washington DC.

Regarding Benghazi, Carney has dutifully lied to protect his bosses to such a degree that I find it difficult to compare to any other individual in history who has used his position to tell one lie after another.  

Despite the fact that there were at least some troops who could have been rapidly deployed to help buy time for the besieged consulate staff, we are fed nothing but excuses about larger troop and materiel assets that were farther off. These could have been on the way while the few who could have and desperately wanted to be sent to help assisted in holding off the attackers. We must even allow the possibility that a few more defenders would have been enough to give the attackers more than they expected and caused  a withdrawal.

The lie about the cause of the attack is the on which many (not I) place their main focus. The White House has continued to assert that they initially believed that protests against  the Innocence of Muslims video led to the attack.

Judicial Watch has shown that the White House can no longer make this claim with a straight face:

"(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that on April 18, 2014, it obtained 41 new Benghazi-relatedState Department documents. They include a newly declassified email showing then-White House Deputy Strategic Communications Adviser Ben Rhodes and other Obama administration public relations officials attempting to orchestrate a campaign to “reinforce” President Obama and to portray the Benghazi consulate terrorist attack as being “rooted in an Internet video, and not a failure of policy.” Other documents show that State Department officials initially described the incident as an “attack” and a possible kidnap attempt.

The documents were released Friday as result of a June 21, 2013, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed against the Department of State (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:13-cv-00951)) to gain access to documents about the controversial talking points used by then-UN Ambassador Susan Rice for a series of appearances on television Sunday news programs on September 16, 2012. Judicial Watch had been seeking these documents since October 18, 2012.

The Rhodes email was sent on sent on Friday, September 14, 2012, at 8:09 p.m. with the subject line: “RE: PREP CALL with Susan, Saturday at 4:00 pm ET.” The documents show that the “prep” was for Amb. Rice’s Sunday news show appearances to discuss the Benghazi attack.

The document lists as a “Goal”: “To underscore that these protests are rooted in and Internet video, and not a broader failure or policy.”

Rhodes returns to the “Internet video” scenario later in the email, the first point in a section labeled “Top-lines”:

[W]e’ve made our views on this video crystal clear. The United States government had nothing to do with it. We reject its message and its contents. We find it disgusting and reprehensible. But there is absolutely no justification at all for responding to this movie with violence. And we are working to make sure that people around the globe hear that message.

Among the top administration PR personnel who received the Rhodes memo were White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, Deputy Press Secretary Joshua Earnest, then-White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer, then-White House Deputy Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri, then-National Security Council Director of Communications Erin Pelton, Special Assistant to the Press Secretary Howli Ledbetter, and then-White House Senior Advisor and political strategist David Plouffe.

The Rhodes communications strategy email also instructs recipients to portray Obama as “steady and statesmanlike” throughout the crisis. Another of the “Goals” of the PR offensive, Rhodes says, is “[T]o reinforce the President and Administration’s strength and steadiness in dealing with difficult challenges.” He later includes as a PR “Top-line” talking point:

I think that people have come to trust that President Obama provides leadership that is steady and statesmanlike. There are always going to be challenges that emerge around the world, and time and again, he has shown that we can meet them................

“Now we know the Obama White House’s chief concern about the Benghazi attack was making sure that President Obama looked good,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “And these documents undermine the Obama administration’s narrative that it thought the Benghazi attack had something to do with protests or an Internet video. Given the explosive material in these documents, it is no surprise that we had to go to federal court to pry them loose from the Obama State Department.”

Carney, though, loyally supports his superiors:

In a second day of contentious questions about newly revealed emails showing White House officials seeking to blame the Benghazi attacks on an anti-Muslim video, White House press secretary Jay Carney repeatedly referred to “conspiracy theories” to deflect inquiries.

“The conspiracy theories keep falling apart,” Carney said Thursday.

He directly attacked Fox News in response to a question

“It doesn’t change the fundamental facts about the so-called talking points, which despite great efforts by your news organization and others have proven not to be a conspiracy,” Carney said.

Carney also doubled down on the assertion that the new emails weren’t about Benghazi, but rather unrest in the Middle East at the time, which he insisted was about the anti-Muslim video produced in the United States even if the Benghazi attack was not.

He accused Republicans of leaking “false information,” and said the CIA talking points that were released to the public disproved the administration tried to mislead the public.

“As I said and others, it was based on what we believed to be true at the time,” Carney said. “There was caveating all the time about the fact that more information might be coming available. What hasn’t changed has been the effort by Republicans to claim a conspiracy when they haven’t been able to find one.".......

“The documents released through a FOIA request by the State Department that included the email that you’re talking about are explicitly about the broader areas separate from the attack on Benghazi,” Carney said.

Fox News’ Ed Henry asked, “If it’s not about Benghazi, why turn it over in a Benghazi suit?”

Carney responded, “You’d have to ask the State Department about responding to FOIA requests –again, you can just read it and decide for yourself. As many people have now said and written, this is a conspiracy theory in search of a conspiracy theory.”...................

One thing that must be noted is that when a key individual tells you to ask another person or group for information that he clearly would have, he is flat-out lying.  

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