Rightbloggers: Had Enough Benghazi? Too Bad!

tomt200.jpgHad enough Benghazi? Too bad! Last week rightbloggers whooped up "explosive" "bombshell" "revelations" that turned out to be more or less what everyone already knew, but were good enough for Republicans to call yet another Congressional committee with which they will finally get the American sheeple to face the truth: That President Obama and his henchmen murdered those people at Benghazi, or if they didn't murder them are nonetheless complicit in their murders because they mentioned a video among the reasons they were killed, which was part of a cover-up to hide the fact that they murdered those people at Benghazi, or if they didn't murder them are nonetheless complicit etc.

Let's look at this latest iteration of the brethren's second favorite Lost Cause.

You may recall that Congressional Republicans held Benghazi hearings a year ago, which revealed that though the Administration offered the anti-Islam video Innocence of Muslims -- which had reportedly caused a attack on a U.S. embassy in Cairo -- as a cause of violence that killed four Americans in the Benghazi consulate, there was also evidence that Al Qaeda operatives had wanted to attack the place regardless.

This would be unsurprising to anyone who was following America's fortunes in the Middle East, but conservatives insisted it meant that Obama was engaged in a "cover-up," though what crime the President was supposed to be covering up, none of them has ever coherently explained.

Those hearings did not lead to the popular uprising for which the brethren hoped, but in the interim they have done their best to keep Benghazi alive, helped greatly by Fox News, which finds reasons to bring it up daily, not excluding the recent Flight 370 story ("The network news doesn't want to cover important stories, like the IRS and Benghazi," railed Bill O'Reilly, "but they can cover the airliner without any political consequences").

Republican politicians are in on the gag, too, occasionally dragging Benghazi witnesses like former CIA Deputy Director Mike Morell back to Capitol Hill to see what they can shake out of them, or saying things like what Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) said in March about the Ukraine crisis: "When you tell the world we're gonna find the people who killed our four Americans in Libya, including the ambassador, and you do nothing about it... it sets in motion exactly what you see." Benghazi, like original sin, poisons all it touches.

Even Putin knows the truth -- why are Mr. and Mrs. America not getting it? Maybe because skeptics, not to mention Wikipedia, have noted that there have been lethal raids on American diplomatic missions abroad for decades, yet opposition parties have not previously made the kind of stink about them Republicans are making now. This suggests to cynical minds like ours that the brethren are animated by purely political considerations, though they insist it's just because they want to impeach Obama, which is simple patriotism.

Since last year's hearings, every so often a little Benghazi would break through rightbloggers' gloom, only to leave them disappointed yet again. In October, for example, 60 Minutes ran a report on Benghazi which had the brethren forgetting every mean thing they'd said about the Lame Stream Media; alas, the report turned out to be bullshit, and they fell back into dark mutterings and bitching about SNL sketches about Benghazi. Even reliable rightwing talking-point force-multiplier Charles Krauthammer told his comrades it was time to hang it up.

dreamneverdie.jpg
The dream will never die.

But last week, conservative investigators Judicial Watch got some White House Benghazi files they'd FOIA'd, and among these was an email that White House Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes had sent to former UN Ambassador Susan Rice after the attack, stating the Administration's "goals" for her when she went before the public on Benghazi. Among these: "To convey that the United States is doing everything that we can to protect our people and facilities abroad. To underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not in a broader policy failure," and other, similarly anodyne ass-covering sentiments.

In other words, the White House accentuated the positive, just as we had originally seen and just as Administrations always do -- as when, for example, Ronald Reagan told America about the Challenger, "they have slipped the surly bonds of earth" instead of "NASA fucked up and killed those poor bastards." But ecstatic rightbloggers described it as the smoking gun they'd been waiting for.

"Benghazi email 'a smoking gun,'" charged the Savannah Morning News. "JW Finds Benghazi Smoking Gun!" own-horn-tooted Judicial Watch." "Benghazi Smoking Gun Exposed," cried FrontPageMag. "Why Sean Hannity Believes This Is the 'Smoking Gun' on Benghazi" was The Heritage Foundation's stop-the-presses headline.

Even Charles Krauthammer was ready to get the Benghazi band back together. "It's to me the equivalent of what was discovered with the Nixon tape," said Krauthammer. Which was a smoking gun!

In their newly-reinvigorated Benghazi offensive, rightbloggers dismissed any possible mitigating circumstances: They took it on faith, for example, that no one at the White House ever believed the anti-Islam video had anything to do with the sudden violence -- though the smarter among them were circumspect in giving this impression, e.g.:

"WHITE HOUSE TO SUSAN RICE: BLAME THE VIDEO FOR BENGHAZI ATTACK," announced Breitbart.com's John Sexton. "...the messaging goals offer insight into how senior advisers in the White House saw the video as an important scapegoat, a way to direct public attention away from questions about the president's foreign policy toward another cause... As we now know (as the administration should have known almost immediately), the truth about what had happened in Benghazi did not quite fit the mold. In fact, a more accurate account would have undercut the White House's messaging goals." And you know what the opposite of an accurate account is? A lie!

"The memos all center around the efforts of the White House, State Department and CIA to prep United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice prior to her infamous appearances on the Sunday talk shows," said Doug MacEachern of The Arizona Republic -- "the ones in which she blamed an Internet video for causing the attacks. The totally made-up explanation, that is." Well, we did say the smarter ones.

"Email Shows White House Planned Benghazi Video Deception," headlined Neil Munro at The Daily Caller. "White House officials consciously planned to spin the successful 2012 jihadi attack on the Benghazi diplomatic compound... In her Sunday appearances, Rice implemented the White House's spin... The email is black-and-white evidence of deception and spin... Clearly, it is a problem for Obama, whose poll ratings are sliding amid his failure to block Russia's advance in Ukraine, and his decision to lie about the impact of Obamacare on Americans' legal ability to keep their preferred health plans..." Benghazi and Ukraine and Obamacare in one "news" story! Munro will never miss a meal.

At National Review, Andrew C. McCarthy said "the administration's 'Blame the Video' fairy tale" went even further than elsewhere reported -- because Obama was lying about the Cairo uprising as well as the Benghazi one. "When Benghazi comes up, the administration -- President Obama, Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice, Jay Carney, et al. -- loves to talk about the Cairo 'protests,'" seethed McCarthy. "Why? Because the media, and thus the public, have bought hook, line, and sinker the fraudulent claim that those 'protests' were over the anti-Muslim video."

That's weird: Several newspapers, here and in Egypt, thought the Cairo riot was video-related; in fact, the State Department officials at the Cairo embassy apparently thought so, too, since they distanced themselves from the video on Twitter the day of the riot. Ah, but that was just a ruse, said McCarthy -- the Cairo embassy people were covering for Obama on Benghazi, even before it happened: "The transparent purpose of the State Department's shrieking over the video," he charged, "was to create the illusion that any security problems at the embassy (violent rioting minimized as mere 'protests') were attributable to the anti-Muslim video, not to President Obama's policies and patent failure to quell al-Qaeda." They're all in on it! Why, when Ambassador Stevens refused extra security at Benghazi the month before the attacks, probably he was preemptively covering for Obama too.

"But as damning as Rhodes's email seems to be, Democrats don't seem too worried," said Jeffrey S. Tobin at Commentary, and he knew why: No, not clear consciences, but because "the story is being largely ignored or downplayed by most of the same mainstream media that helped foster the narrative that Republicans were nuts to claim the White House was covering something up." And what else could explain that except pro-Democrat spin?

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24 comments
Lulu Black
Lulu Black

how many American soldiers died in Iraq with no apology?

Robin Brass
Robin Brass

I guess the thousands of soldiers that died on the other watch they forgot about #missionaccomplishedmyass

RogerAiles
RogerAiles

Is anyone surprised that Roger el-Simon is using manpads?

StringOnAStick
StringOnAStick topcommenter

It's all they've got, and it ain't much.  That poor chicken.....

pete.lounsbury
pete.lounsbury

Here's the problem... How did that email surface? Foot dragging for sure, cover up yes and. Yes, the media has failed miserably to inform the American people about what really happened, and no because cover up is the wrong word. Misled, withheld documents, diverted attention, played political games and our President's dealing with the entire situation wasn't covered sufficiently because to me that was the pre-election story the media missed. Obama had a crises and his leadership, as well as that of the Secretary of State was third rate at best. He got re-elected and apparently he learned nothing and is still not adept at all with regard to handling crisis. But I'm guessing the readers here can't or wont see any of the valid points I just made.

alanhw
alanhw

Who can disagree with Jeff Goldstein's sober assessment that the United States has been going steadily downhill since July 5, 1776.  But far as I can tell, he decided to take it, after all.  

glennisw250
glennisw250 topcommenter

there is no hope of ever holding these people to account in the way they deserve, which would entail many years in a super-max prison,"


What is exactly the mandated sentence for not using the Magic Word on a tee-vee show?

glennisw250
glennisw250 topcommenter

"their complicity in covering-up the deaths - the murders - of four Americans." 


Gosh, I guess I forgot the part where the administration didn't let us know that four people had been killed by a hostile mob. I'm shocked, deeply shocked, at this revelation. [sarcasm, for those who might be so impaired]

McSalmon
McSalmon

This is my fear: 


That in 2014, the Senate will be held by the GOP, as well as the House. This is possible. 


Then, because all the members of the GOP Congress are either manipulative dick waggers, conspiracy prone buffoons, or opportunistic parasites on the body politic, they will try to hold an impeachment over the failure of a swarm of Robocops spontaneously appearing to hold back the horde of Al Queda Ninja at Benghazi.


Benghazi largely boils down to 'someone attacked an embassy and killed the ambassador and some other folks.'  Anyone who bothers to research it knows that this was not a singular event in foreign policy, as there have been several attacks on a number of embassies over the decades. This fact will be endlessly restated to the GOP, and they will not care. 


So it could occur that the President could be effectively impeached, because of something he had minimal control over and did not benefit from. The mass of people in the country will hate this decision, but this will not matter, and there will be plenty of time left to break whatever positive things this administration has done into little pieces.


I am optimistic for the future, but I have to admit that the depths of scumbaggery that the leaders and minions of the conservative machine is nearly limitless, and makes me worry for the future of a world I love. I don't want the epitaph of the nation to be "Benghazi". Can you blame me?

pete.lounsbury
pete.lounsbury

Lots of mind readers in here and btw, don't quit your day jobs; not one of you read me correctly. I'm Libertarian and as such believe that the last war we fought that was Constitutional was WWII, and that includes Libya when both Reagan and Obama bombed the country.

My point was and is that while the country was determining which candidate who had no intention at all at breaking the unconstitutional use of military force by the Chief Executive, Obama's lack of experience and the price of it was on full display and it went unreported. Nothing was more disappointing than when Bush didn't go to Congress for a declaration of war against Afghanistan and when Obama did the same. Oh and btw, when we do go to war the idea is to defeat the enemy and come on back home (if it is fought on foreign soil like when the Marines stormed Tripoli in 1801), not to invade, occupy, rebuild and then install a new government. And ho by the way again, the Barbary Coast War was also known as the First Barbary War, meaning we had to go back and finish what we started after leaving prematurely. That's what war is under the Constitution, and beyond that we should no interest other than leaving peaceful lives at home.

What I see on display here is a lot of very angry, bigoted mind readers who have convinced themselves that they are peaceful and posses some form of moral mandate to act very rudely, disrespectfully, angrily and meanly to anyone that disagrees with them about anything. There's a word for that, look it up. It starts with a "b" and ends with "igot". Go find a mirror and if you have even a smidgen of honesty, you'll accept what you have become as have going down the wrong path and perhaps, and this is a big perhaps, you'll return to being true liberals.

GeoX
GeoX topcommenter

@pete.lounsbury  See, I know how much you hate the president, so I know that if there were an actual *scandal* here, you would make us damn sure that we all know about it, instead of just barfing out these vague imprecations of...something or other.  It ain't hard.

Al_Swearengen
Al_Swearengen

@pete.lounsbury No one cares about fucking Sunday morning show talking points.  That's the nut of this "scandal".  Sane people see the distinction.

glennisw250
glennisw250 topcommenter

@McSalmon "Benghazi largely boils down to 'someone attacked an embassy and killed the ambassador and some other folks.' "


And because the administration sent someone to say on a TeeVee show what they thought at the time was the motivation, only to be corrected a few days or a week later.


Pretty weak sauce, I'd say, but who ever said the wingnuts couldn't spin gold out of dross before?

McSalmon
McSalmon

@pete.lounsbury Again, your disappointment in Obama's performance does not elevate what happened at Benghazi to the level of a crime. It just means you voted for Gary Johnson, and would have preferred his lack of experience in how to manage an embassy attack happening thousands of miles away. 


And what exactly should have been done? I'm curious what Obama should have been doing that would have met your approval - I don't think anything would have myself. Congress had previously cut security spending, so the forces he had available to him were relatively fixed. I doubt a Libertarian would have raised it prior to a surprise attack. It's been largely admitted by everyone that there wasn't anything anyone could have done at the time, so they're basically bitching about the administration's reports on the matter while the investigations were still ongoing. Tell me how that amounts to something that deserves it's own hearing, 2 years later. 


What I see on display, is a guy who has been listening to a lot of silly talking points made by GOP and Libertarian shills and failed to actually think matters through on his own. There's a word for that too - it starts with "St" and ends with "ooge". If you had a smidgen of dignity, you'd realize that liberals are not some evil cabal trying to murder you in your bed, and not take your talking points from the same assholes who lied us into a fake war you hated so much in the first place.

McSalmon
McSalmon

@RogerAiles @pete.lounsburyYou know, if you believe that Obama is doing a horrible job, that's fine. Whatever - I thought Bush was the worst president in living memory, who got a lot more people killed though a combination of neglect and stupidity, and hid it behind a facade of cowboy patriotism. See how popular I am.


But, right now, the GOP is planning to hold another set of investigations on what happened at Benghazi, as if what happened at Benghazi hasn't already been hashed over. Nothing new will be advanced, but crimes will be insinuated, with no charge forthcoming. It's all a kabuki show to accuse Obama of horrible crimes against America, conducted by cynical and/or crazy politicians for political gain. And, as I stated, it may come that the Congress under a GOP dominated Senate will try to impeach him on a fake criminal act that they made up. If this occurs, it would be no less a coup than if paramilitaries attacked the Capitol.

McSalmon
McSalmon

@pete.lounsbury @McSalmon Yeah, that'll work - welcome to the Internet, grampa! It turns out that blithely asserting privilege gets you precisely diddly anymore. If you want to talk smack in comments, get a thicker skin. 


Benghazi was hashed out over a year ago. We already went over policy and what can be improved, and what was done right. This is not about Benghazi anymore - it's about the elections in 2014, and in 2016, especially if Clinton decides to run. It's a GOP call to the faith to bring em out on election day.

I lived through the 90s and remember the absurdity of multiple hearings to dredge up anything incriminating on then president Clinton and his administration. The conspiracies, the lies, the innuendo and the blithe horse race reporting by CNN as if it was all a game, instead of an effort to frog march a sitting president out of office paid for by hypocritical millionaires based on bullshit. This has that same stink on it. 


But hey - maybe you'll get what you want, and Obama will be booted out of office, and we'll have another GOP presidency, House and Senate in 2017! Just like 2001! They seemed pretty competent, if you drank a lot and were easily distracted by shiny toys.



rdmcis
rdmcis

@pete.lounsbury @McSalmon:

BTW Ron Paul was my choice in 2008...

That's Doctor Paul to you, blasphemer!

pete.lounsbury
pete.lounsbury

@McSalmon @pete.lounsbury  You speak in generalities and seem to think you're a mind reader to boot. Get some help because a free mind is a beautiful thing, I hope you find yours. BTW Ron Paul was my choice in 2008 but he didn't make it past the primaries, and who cares who ran in 2012 as the media already licked our leader. Competence is a big deal you moron. Hillary is competent, I am ideologically opposed to her political views, but she is not a naive and over confident idiot who would do all us all a favor by continuing to campaign and just staying away from decision that have consequences. Now go away kid, you bother me.

McSalmon
McSalmon

@pete.lounsbury @glennisw250@McSalmonHunh - comment got swallowed. Well, adapt adopt and improve!


This article states that Obama is going to help, now that he's been asked by the Nigerian government - where, precisely, is the 'incompetence'? That he had to wait for a request, or that he's helping at all? Not sure what you expected Obama to do, which seems to be a theme. In general, calling someone 'incompetent' then not making your case for the better option isn't very convincing.

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