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Thu Jan 24, 2013, 03:05 AM

Juan Cole: Top Ten Republican Myths on Benghazi that Justify Hillary Clinton’s Anger

http://www.juancole.com/2013/01/republican-benghazi-clintons.html

Top Ten Republican Myths on Benghazi that Justify Hillary Clinton’s Anger

Published on January 24th, 2013
Written by: Juan

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton let Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wisc.) have it in here testimony about Benghazi on Wednesday: VIDEO AT LINK

It was not the only emotional or pointed moment. I share her frustration at the bad faith and conspiracy theories that underlay a lot of the question. (Some of the below points are new, some are being revised from an earlier posting.)

1. Republican senators keep saying that it should have been “easy” to find out what happened on September 11, 2012, by simply debriefing US personnel who had been there. John McCain, Ron Johnson and the others who make this charge are the most cynical and manipulative people in the world. The Benghazi US mission was very clearly an operation of the Central Intelligence Agency, and that is the reason that the Obama administration officials have never been able to speak frankly and publicly about it. McCain and the others know this very well, and they know that their public carping cannot be “simply” answered because the answers would endanger sources and methods. The consulate was amazingly well-guarded by some 40 CIA operatives, many of them ex-special forces, in a nearby safe house. These were viewed by consular officials as “the cavalry.” It is still not clear what Ambassador Chris Stevens and the CIA were doing in Benghazi, and unless we know that we can’t know why they were attacked. (They were not overseeing the shipping of weapons to Syria; the Syrian revolutionaries complain bitterly that the US *prevents* them from getting medium and heavy weapons).

2. Republicans keep posturing that their questions about Benghazi are intended to bolster US security. In fact, they are harming it. Republican hearings in the House of Representative have disgracefully revealed the names of Libyans talking to the US consulate, thus endangering their lives and harming US efforts to understand the situation in the country, since who would risk talking to the embassy if they know about Darrell Issa’s big mouth?

3. The GOP figures keep saying that it was obvious that there was no demonstration at the Benghazi consulate against the so-called “film,” the ‘Innocence of Muslims’ that attacked the Prophet Muhammad. But in fact Libyan security officials repeatedly told wire services on September 12 that there was such a demonstration, and that the attack issued from those quarters. An American resident in Benghazi at that time confirms that there were such demonstrations that day. The secular-minded revolutionary militia that guarded the US consulate for the Libyan government kept the demonstrations far enough away from the consulate gates that they would not have shown up in security videos.

4. Benghazi, a city of over a million, is not dominated by “al-Qaeda,” contrary to what Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina has repeatedly said or implied. The city had successful municipal elections in May, just before I got there. The number one vote-getter was a woman professor of statistics at the university. While political Islam is a force in Benghazi, only some relatively small groups are militant, and it has to compete with nationalist, tribal and regional ideological currents. In Libya’s parliamentary elections of July, 2012, the Muslim Brotherhood did very poorly and nationalists came to power. Women won 20% of the seats! The elected Speaker of Parliament, Muhammad Magarief, called for a secular constitution for Libya and a separation of religion and state.

MORE AT LINK

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Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply Juan Cole: Top Ten Republican Myths on Benghazi that Justify Hillary Clinton’s Anger (Original post)
Hissyspit Jan 2013 OP
Jim__ Jan 2013 #1
Loge23 Jan 2013 #2
LineNew Reply .
Hissyspit Jan 2013 #3
Scurrilous Jan 2013 #4
Comrade Grumpy Jan 2013 #5
Fantastic Anarchist Jan 2013 #6
Auntie Bush Jan 2013 #7

Response to Hissyspit (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 05:26 AM

1. Great information. Thanks for posting.

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Response to Hissyspit (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 07:35 AM

2. Red Herrings from the red party

Of course the biggest lie of all is that this charade actually is about Libya; it is not.
It's all about tarring one of the most admired, hardest-working, smartest women out there, Hillary Clinton.
The Thugs know damn well that their goose is all but cooked with the majority of Americans. They hear like the rest of us all of the talk about Hillary in 2016.
This is a feeble, half-cocked attempt to shape opinion with a remarkably compliant media.

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Response to Hissyspit (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 09:26 AM

3. .

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Response to Hissyspit (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 03:46 PM

4. K & R

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Response to Hissyspit (Original post)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 04:05 PM

5. I want to know what the CIA was up to in Benghazi.

"The Benghazi US mission was very clearly an operation of the Central Intelligence Agency, and that is the reason that the Obama administration officials have never been able to speak frankly and publicly about it. McCain and the others know this very well, and they know that their public carping cannot be “simply” answered because the answers would endanger sources and methods. The consulate was amazingly well-guarded by some 40 CIA operatives, many of them ex-special forces, in a nearby safe house. These were viewed by consular officials as “the cavalry.” It is still not clear what Ambassador Chris Stevens and the CIA were doing in Benghazi, and unless we know that we can’t know why they were attacked."

40 CIA operatives? Juan Cole says they weren't shipping arms to the Syrian rebels. Okay, what were they doing?

And damn those Republicans for obscuring the serious questions with their pseudo-outrage and posturing.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #5)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 08:22 PM

6. Agreed.

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Response to Comrade Grumpy (Reply #5)

Thu Jan 24, 2013, 08:35 PM

7. It was a secret operation and not for the world to know...so I'd say it is none of anyones business!

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