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Who Altered the Benghazi Talking Points?

Monday, November 19, 2012

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Bipartisan outrage is a rarity in Washington these days, but the Obama Administration’s lack of transparency over Benghazi has provoked it.

This $64,000 question occupied Congress in open and closed hearings last week as well as the Sunday talk shows: Who altered the Administration’s talking points on the Benghazi terrorist attack? Lawmakers of both parties—such as Diane Feinstein (D–CA) and Mike Rogers (R–MI), the two senior members of the Senate Intelligence Committee who both appeared on NBC’s Meet the Press—are demanding answers.

The immediate target has been U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice, who did not testify last week. The CIA talking points she was provided suggested that the attacks were caused by outrage over an anti-Muslim video and were not a systematically devised terrorist attack. Among the provided talking points were:

“The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the US Embassy in Cairo.”
“This assessment may change as additional information is collected and analyzed and as currently available information continues to be evaluated.”
“The investigation is on-going, and the US Government is working with Libyan authorities to bring to justice those responsible for the deaths of US citizens.”

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