Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Susan Rice and Benghazi

Bryan Preston gets to the heart of the matter with Benghazi:

5 Benghazi Mysteries that Must Be Solved
RTWT. It is the best summary of the key questions/issues that I’ve read.

For example:

During her talk show appearances, Rice claimed that the attack was not premeditated and that it happened due to a spontaneous protest of a barely seen “hateful” movie that had been posted on YouTube months before the attack. Why did Rice mischaracterize the attack? Was she aware of the original talking points, and how they had been altered? Were Rice or Clinton the senior officials on whose behalf State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland had the talking points scrubbed of references to al Qaeda and terrorism? Why was Rice the face of the Obama administration that day, when she was the US ambassador to the UN, not Libya?
As we assess Rice’s role it is worth reading this piece:

Who Was UN Ambassador Susan Rice Before Benghazi?

But her tenure at the Clinton Administration was not without controversy. In a 2001 Atlantic Monthly article, Samantha Power, a human rights journalist who is now an Obama administration adviser, criticized Rice's response to the 1994 genocide in Rwanda during her first years in the Clinton administration. Power wrote that Rice wondered on a conference call how the use of the word genocide would affect the November elections if the U.S. failed to intervene, appearing to be more preoccupied with the domestic political ramifications of the tragedy than in stopping the violence.

Rice has since said she deeply regrets the U.S. inaction in Rwanda. …

In 2007, she joined the first Obama presidential campaign as Senior Adviser for National Security Affairs. Rice was a staunch, outspoken surrogate for the president, and according to her detractors, maybe too outspoken.

In a 2008 Huffington Post blog, she sharply criticized Obama's primary opponent, then-Sen. Clinton, for voting for the Iraq war, saying it proved Clinton wouldn't be ready for a "3 a.m. call" in a national security emergency….

Her loyalty and blunt-speaking manner has been appreciated and rewarded by allies, such as Albright and President Obama. When he took office he named Rice as the U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations.
From this we learn three critical facts: 1. Susan Rice is a diplomat who had no qualms about considering domestic politics when making diplomatic decisions. 2. She is an Obama loyalist who was an early passenger of the Hope and Change Express. 3. Her loyalty to Obama made her quite willing to kneecap her old patrons the Clintons.

So, are we to believe that the White House ignored all that when they chose Susan Rice to go on the Sunday shows to deflect blame after the disaster at Benghazi?

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