"A wise and frugal government which shall restrain men
from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government."
(Thomas Jefferson)

Friday, November 16, 2012

GOP Senators Tune Attention of UN Ambassador Dr. Susan Rice to Focus on Benghazi

What?  No Press Conferences for Senator McCain following General Petraeus testimony this morning?  Looks like McCain finally figured out he might have been wrong and the fact he skipped the briefings yesterday to attend the press conference was not a good idea:
Even Sen. John McCain, who has been one of Rice’s chief critics in the Senate, was largely mum on the subject following the hearing, opting instead to lambast the Iraqi government for freeing Ali DaqDuq, a Hezbollah leader connected to multiple American deaths.
State Department requested additional dollars to beef up security at our embassies and consulates but the increase was rejected in the House, but it is still the fault of the State Department?   Guess the State Department was supposed to manufacture dollars to increase security.

Time for Republicans to quit their grandstanding.  I said the same thing after 9/11 about the Democrats when the initial cooperation wore off.  Sure miss the days of Democrat Senators Sam Nunn and David Boren  when they actually did work together with Republican Senators Don Nickles and Richard Lugar.  

IMHO there were changes made to the Federal Government intelligence/investigative structure in 2004 following 9/11 that should not have been implemented.  Putting more layers of management has not helped:
The CIA and its responsibilities changed markedly in 2004. Before December 2004, the CIA was the main intelligence organization of the U.S. government; it was responsible for coordinating the activities of the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) as a whole. The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 created the office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI), which took over management and leadership of the IC.
Republicans and Fox News have way overplayed their hand on Benghazi and it looks like from some comments they haven't learned their lesson.  Guess we should be happy Republicans have backed off US Ambassador Dr. Susan Rice but what they need to quit doing is trying to manufacture a political witch hunt which has been ongoing since the Benghazi attack.  The worst part is that members of the Intelligence Committee know better when it comes to CIA intelligence that when it comes in the fog of an attack, the scenario of what happened can change over time. 
Republicans Tone Down Attacks On Rice, But Keep Focus On Benghazi 
“Clearly the security measures were not adequate despite an overwhelming and growing amount of information showing the area of Benghazi was dangerous and particularly the date of Sept. 11,” says Rubio. 
John Stanton BuzzFeed Staff posted

Image by Alex Wong / Getty Images 
WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans Friday appeared to shift positions on the assault on the American consulate in Benghazi, moving away from political attacks on Ambassador Susan Rice to calls for further inquiries into substantive issues relating to security and intelligence gathering. 
For weeks Republicans have hammered Rice for claiming the attack was in response to an anti-Islam Youtube video during a Sunday show appearance following the incident. 
Democrats have bitterly complained that the assault on Rice, who they say was just repeating a CIA briefing — and whom President Barack Obama appears dead set on nominating as Secretary of State. Her defenders call the attacks purely political in nature, pointing out that her comments have resulted in no policy changes and that she was working with the information provided by the intelligence community. 
"Increasingly the focus is going to be on the fact that despite a growing and significant amount of information being provided to the state Department about the growing risk in the Benghazi area, they did not take adequate enough security measures," Sen. Marco Rubio said bluntly after a closed-door hearing with former CIA chief Gen. David Petraeus. "I think that’s what the growing amount of inquiry should be about in the coming days.” 
Indeed, Chambliss acknowledged that, “the problem with what Susan Rice said was not whether she stuck with the talking points, were they correct. They were. “ 
However, Chambliss did take issue with Rice’s decision to also tout the administration’s efforts against Al Queada given the fact that intelligence seemed to show they were involved in some way with the attack. 
“In fact, what the UN Ambassador stated was the talking points that had been given, approved, declassified to the House Intelligence Committee and that’s what she, I am told, restated,” said Sen. Bill Nelson, a member of the community. 
“So much of this confusion has arisen because of the difference between what is classified and what is unclassified,” Sen. Kent Conrad said. “When people are talking in a classified setting, they can say much more than they can say in an unclassified setting, the notes that Ambassador Rice was speaking from were from an unclassified setting.” 
“She used the unclassified talking points that were signed off on by the entire intelligence community,” Conrad said.
Excerpt:  Read More at BuzzFeed

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