Chambliss: WH had to have changed CIA talking points on Benghazi

posted at 9:01 am on November 19, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Yesterday, the White House claimed it had nothing to do with changes to the CIA’s briefing notes on which UN Ambassador Susan Rice reportedly relied when she told five different Sunday talk shows five days after the sacking of the Benghazi consulate that there was “no evidence” of terrorism. That comes as news to Senator Saxby Chambliss, who notes that everyone else in the chain of custody of those talking points testified to his committee about their handling of them except the White House, and all of them said that the CIA’s assessment of the likelihood of terrorism was still in the notes when they had them:


Leaders from the State Department, FBI, CIA, including former CIA Director David Petraeus, testified on Thursday and Friday. Regarding the allegations that the original CIA talking points had been changed so that terrorist involvement was not included, Sen. Chambliss said, “Everybody there was asked do you know who made these changes; and nobody knew. The only entity that reviewed the talking points that was not there was the White House.”

If the White House was so adamant about this position, where were they during the hearings? Why not send someone to testify to their actions in the dissemination of a false narrative during the presidential election?

However, both Chambliss and Joe Lieberman correctly state that the real question is why this consulate was allowed to remain open in the first place:

Sen. Chambliss told Chris Wallace, “We’ve got to get some State Department officials in to really explain why you send an ambassador basically unguarded with a few Libyan guards.”

Sen. Lieberman added, “In my opinion it was irresponsible to have our State Department personnel there with only three security guards.” He went on to say that, “Either we should’ve given them the protection they deserved, or we should’ve closed that mission in Benghazi as the British government had done a short while before.”

In that sense, Susan Rice is not exactly small potatoes, but she’s not the central question. What took place a few days later is less important than the decisions, actions, and lack of action before the attack and during the attack. Still, that’s not to say that what took place after the attack might not have some bearing on the White House’s attempt to escape responsibility for what took place before and during it, too.

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WWPD?

What would Palin do?

PappyD61 on November 19, 2012 at 9:03 AM

…yeah!….AND?

KOOLAID2 on November 19, 2012 at 9:03 AM

I know what PappyD61 would do.

portlandon on November 19, 2012 at 9:06 AM

I remember a 9/11 where everyone scrambled to save Americans..
And the president didn’t have to give the OK.

Oh well..

Electrongod on November 19, 2012 at 9:06 AM

This is so obvious. Why pu$$yfoot around this anymore? Of course the White House has been lying about this from day one. With the slobbering press on knee pads, we will never be told the truth and Obama will get away with it.

karenhasfreedom on November 19, 2012 at 9:08 AM

Susan Rice is not exactly small potatoes, but she’s not the central question. What took place a few days later is less important than the decisions, actions, and lack of action before the attack and during the attack. Still, that’s not to say that what took place after the attack might not have some bearing on the White House’s attempt to escape responsibility for what took place before and during it, too.

Rice’s lying her ass off was less about CYA for what the White House/administration did or didn’t do before the attacks as it was to prop up the campaign theme that Al Qaeda was on its heels. It is true that she isn’t the central issue but she does need to testify exactly where she got those briefing points that have turned out to be “factually incorrect.” If she didn’t knowingly lie then she knows who fed her that information. And the Senate needs to put a hold on any sort of nomination of the lying partisan whore in the second term until and unless she clears up the fact taht it appears she has no integrity or credibility.

Happy Nomad on November 19, 2012 at 9:08 AM

Continue hammering the white house

cmsinaz on November 19, 2012 at 9:11 AM

Bread and Circuses…

The GOP won’t do anything regardless but bluster their feathers and strut around for the television. We are under dictatorship rule…get used to it.

trs on November 19, 2012 at 9:14 AM

I strongly believe that Obama was watching this horrific quadruple murder happen in real time in the Situation Room. Then, he went to bed, in proparing for his Campaign Trip to Vegas.

Cold,callous, narcissist.

kingsjester on November 19, 2012 at 9:15 AM

The lsm will continue defending the wh so the gop need to ignore the lsm queations and focus on the wh cover up… they’re lying

cmsinaz on November 19, 2012 at 9:15 AM

Palin is more interested in “doing the right thing”, while Barky is more interested in “doing nothing”.

She would have used the Spectre or alternative and not have abandoned our boys.

Starlink on November 19, 2012 at 9:09 AM

It is irrelevant what Palin, Romney, or anybody else would have done. The responsiblity lies with the President and the rat-eared-wonder decided that these Americans were expendable in order to further the “Al Qaeda is on its heels” theme from the poltical campaign. This is about the most craven reason for letting people die. Susan Rice is an accomplice after the fact which is why she is unfit for SecState.

Happy Nomad on November 19, 2012 at 9:15 AM

The GOP won’t do anything regardless but bluster their feathers and strut around for the television. We are under dictatorship rule…get used to it.

trs on November 19, 2012 at 9:14 AM

So, what would you have the GOP do? Congress is holding hearings but they face a cadre of professional liars and a system that precludes any real legal challenge since the AG is a crony who saw nothing wrong with armed thugs threatening white voters and killed thousands of Mexicans by state-sanctioned gun running. What should the GOP do?

Happy Nomad on November 19, 2012 at 9:19 AM

So this is all about talking points now? Man we are so stupid.

tomas on November 19, 2012 at 9:22 AM

So Obama lied . . . and the sun rises in the East and sets in the West. let’s give that a big “Ho Hum”.

rplat on November 19, 2012 at 9:24 AM

I still like Ed Henry’s question to Obama in the presser: “Can you tell family members of the fallen that you did everything within your powers to prevent them from this fate”. (paraphrased)

The bottom line is, no he didn’t!

Rovin on November 19, 2012 at 9:24 AM

WH – is simply running out the clock – and it’s working

jake-the-goose on November 19, 2012 at 9:26 AM

I’ve heard words such as “long drawn out process” from the GOP. Translates to- this will die on the vine and we’re planning our 2016 assault on the good people.

Mr. Arrogant on November 19, 2012 at 9:26 AM

Can the House bring SoS Clinton in before she exits in January, I know she is scheduled sometime in December but watch some international crisis pop up somewhere in east bumfark that causes a cancellation of that meeting. I say they need a subpeana at the ready just in case.

I firmly believe that this will go nowhere and this administration will get off scot freee for the murders of 4 Patriots on 9/11/12.

Sad how I feel about this but what can one expect when the LSM is in bed with them.

I still Loathe them, even more so since Nov 6th if thats even remotely possible.

D-fusit on November 19, 2012 at 9:26 AM

So, when are obama, Rice, Biden and SOS Clinton going to be impeached? What’s the hold up?

Pork-Chop on November 19, 2012 at 9:27 AM

Let’s face it, this is a dictatorial regime that will do whatever it pleases and there’s nothing that can be done to them. As citizens, we’re helpless and without power to change anything.

rplat on November 19, 2012 at 9:28 AM

The GOP won’t do anything regardless but bluster their feathers and strut around for the television. We are under dictatorship rule…get used to it.

trs on November 19, 2012 at 9:14 AM

Exactly right. Broncobama could come out right now and say “yes GOP, I changed it, now what are you going to do about it, bitches? Yeah, that’t what I thought, now STFU and pass my amnesty and tax increases”.

Alabama Infidel on November 19, 2012 at 9:29 AM

Rovin on November 19, 2012 at 9:24 AM

The exact question:

I wanted to ask about the families of these four Americans who were killed. Sean Smith’s father Ray said he believes his son called 9-1-1 for help and they didn’t get it. I know you said you grieve for the four Americans, that it is being investigated, but the families have been waiting for more than two months. So I would like for you to address the families, if you can: On 9/11, as Commander-in-Chief, did you issue any orders to try to protect their lives?

The question is important but the real gist here is that it has been more than two months and the administration has told these families nothing but lies. They deserve the truth and they deserve it now. Instead the White House is more interested in maintaining the cover up, lies, and a very selective version of the “facts.”

Happy Nomad on November 19, 2012 at 9:31 AM

The question Obama must ask himself every day for the next 4 years is, ‘Does Joe think President Biden is only going to happen through impeachment’

meci on November 19, 2012 at 9:32 AM

Impeachment? To what end? Even if he is impeached the senate will not convict and absolutely nothing has been accomplished. Bill Clinton was impeached and that turned into a big “so what”. Frustrating and hopeless are the operative words.

rplat on November 19, 2012 at 9:36 AM

chambliss. mr. elitist cocktail party himself? going to really, really do something about benghazi.

never in a million years.

renalin on November 19, 2012 at 9:38 AM

Who changed the Talking Points?

Valerie Jarret.

Recall that this is the person who arm-twisted Obama into joining the Libyan war, even though no one could see any US interest in doing so – but it would make her boyfriend look ‘tough’.

Recall that this is the person who arm-twisted Obama into backing off from three prior opportunities to nail bin Laden – in case it went badly for her boyfriend.

I’m sure that everything coming into the White House is routed through her office. She changed the talking points to make her boyfriend look good.

Obama is wholly lost, clueless, and idiotic on his own, as he demonstrated so often during his first term. Valerie Jarret is the real President, and she enjoys being the real President. She will never have to take a fall for this, because Obama would be even more lost, clueless, and idiotic without he than he currently is. And he knows it.

ss396 on November 19, 2012 at 9:41 AM

Watching this administration in action is like watching some street hustler playing a game of Three-card Monte.

NotCoach on November 19, 2012 at 9:42 AM

Recall that this is the person who arm-twisted Obama into backing off from three prior opportunities to nail bin Laden – in case it went badly for her boyfriend.

ss396 on November 19, 2012 at 9:41 AM

Not her boyfriend, but her obedient son. Valerie Jarret is Obama’s replacement mommy.

NotCoach on November 19, 2012 at 9:43 AM

You have to keep investigating but now is not the time to get bogged down. We still have the high ground on actual ideas, have to get that message out more. We can’t let these gentlemen become a political football. We aren’t but we are letting it happen in the media. I hate to see this.

We have to keep moving forward, regardless, of the investigation.

We can’t let them say we were engaged in partisan bickering while we went over the fiscal cliff. Walk and chew gum.

We had a chance to be out in front on jobs and we blew that big time.

tomas on November 19, 2012 at 9:44 AM

There is no end game to this.
Impeachment won’t happen and whatever percentage of the population that actually voted for Obama doesn’t care.
WE have 4 years of this sh** and there will be another equally outrageous crises before they ever get to the bottom of this one.
So glad my tax dollars pay these idiots on the right/middle and criminals on the left.

ORconservative on November 19, 2012 at 9:46 AM

In today’s NYPost Ralph Peters sums up a number of incredible bits of information that the WH and Obysmal expect the nation to swallow. The facts don’t add up.

These several points stand out:

AP

Now they’re telling very different tales: President Obama with Gen. David Petraeus, back when they were working together effectively.

* That, even now, the attack somehow, magically, might have been partly about that discredited video, after all, since the first phase was sloppier than the crisper second phase. Jeez. It’s obvious the terrorists did what any seasoned commander would do: Used the B-team as bait at the consulate, reserving the A-team to spring the trap on the CIA facility.

* That it was purely coincidental the attack occurred on the 11th anniversary of 9/11.

* That doctoring the early CIA analysis to eliminate any mention of terrorism was purely a bureaucratic quirk (having coped with the interagency process, I assure you it would be easy to identify who neutered the analysis — if the White House wanted to).

onlineanalyst on November 19, 2012 at 9:47 AM

What took place a few days later is less important than the decisions, actions, and lack of action before the attack and during the attack.

yes. yes and yes.

Who gave the Stand Down order….who ordered the Code Red? Where is COL Nathan R Jessup? and get his butt on the stand….

Why were 4 Americans left to die while US aircraft and SOF personnel left sitting on the tarmac with their dicks in their hands?

ted c on November 19, 2012 at 9:48 AM

Impeachment? To what end? Even if he is impeached the senate will not convict and absolutely nothing has been accomplished. Bill Clinton was impeached and that turned into a big “so what”. Frustrating and hopeless are the operative words.

rplat on November 19, 2012 at 9:36 AM

Rplat,

Two points. First, impeachment proceedings should not be a political calculation. The House has the obligation to impeach if they believe that the President is guilty of a crime regardless whether or not the Senate will confirm.

Secondly, to a certain degree, we are guilty of what we accuse Dems doing when we sit back and expect Congress to take care of it all. IMO, this is one of those situations where it will be public pressure on Congress that will make the difference. In other words, Congress would be very happy to dispose of this matter with a couple of inconclusive hearings. Public pressure matters. It was why Clinton ultimately faced impeachment and why Nixon left office. To that end, the very best thing the rat-eared-wonder could do for justice is to nominate Susan Rice as SecState and force her to answer fully the questions she has so far refused to answer other than to claim she’s just an innocent black girl reading what the IC told her was true. She isn’t really that stupid and it is time that she be grilled accordingly and under oath.

Happy Nomad on November 19, 2012 at 9:56 AM

Barry lied and people died. But look at the bright side. This time only 4 died. How many died because of Fast and Furious?

GarandFan on November 19, 2012 at 10:04 AM

Saxy Chambliss just stated that

- David Petraeus did NOT shade/alter or be inconsistent in his testimony.

- There is NO need for a special select investigation. The Senate and his committee (D. Feinstein, chair) can do just fine by itself, thank you.

aquaviva on November 19, 2012 at 10:05 AM

Chambliss is my senator. I’m just glad to see he’s really alive.

Release the film of the attack!

moonsbreath on November 19, 2012 at 10:09 AM

I read somewhere, I can’t remember where, but this ambassador was killed to cover up another gun-running operation. Unfortunately, 3 others got killed in the process. Can someone clear this up for me? Thanks.

Mirimichi on November 19, 2012 at 10:10 AM

Who changed the talking points and deleted the assessment that it was a “terrorist act” (duh!) is NOT the most important point. Accept the fact that Valarie Jarret or the rat-eared punk did it and move on.
What IS important is knowing just who is responsible for giving the initial ‘stand down’ order to the men at the annex – and WHO denied assistance to Woods and Doherty as they fought the islamofascist savages from the annex roof. WHO issued an order to NOT support them? They had a laser target designator ON THE MORTAR – and were calling for air support (that had to be there, or else why lase the target?) and it was denied them. Someone gave that order. WHO?

Second – what was so important to cover up that d’ohbama was willing to allow 37 people to die for it? Four is bad enough – but the punk was willing to allow three dozen people to be killed for HIS interests and to cover SOMETHING that HE is responsible for.

Solaratov on November 19, 2012 at 10:19 AM

Our local paper had a story on this yesterday from the AP. Petraus apparently testified that he didn’t say it was AQ terrorists in the closed door party because he didn’t want the bad guys to know we knew it was them and they wouldn’t be looking for us to try and follow them. Now if that isn’t the stupidest story I’ve ever heard. Is this what passes for conspiracy starting at the CIA today? The spooks all need a cut in pay and a reduction in force. They are worthless.

Bread and Circuses…

The GOP won’t do anything regardless but bluster their feathers and strut around for the television. We are under dictatorship rule…get used to it.

trs on November 19, 2012 at 9:14 AM

This is more like it. Can’t wait for the talking points on the fiscal cliff deal.

Kissmygrits on November 19, 2012 at 10:20 AM

So far I’ve heard. Republicans are old and white, they don’t believe in global warming. McCain is just a loser and senile. Republicans only care about rich people. Reagan killed soldiers in the 80′s…

So this doesn’t matter.

tomas on November 19, 2012 at 10:21 AM

ORconservative on November 19, 2012 at 9:46 AM

One thing is for sure: if this whole sorry episode ends up being swept under the rug (and I think the odds are great for that), we are in for more of this than just the next four years. The powers that be waited a long time to gain control and they will NOT go quietly.

So far, there has been no resolution on F&F or anything else shady this administration has been involved in. Should the same thing happen on Benghazi, rest assured that this administration will continue for more than the next four years – the will of the American people and the Constitution, laws, etc. be damned.

The sad part is that while neither I nor a great many others didn’t sign on for this, at least half the country is too stupid, lazy, willfully ignorant and apathetic to even care. They simply do not want to have to think or act for themselves.

ghostwalker1 on November 19, 2012 at 10:24 AM

The corrupt legacy media goes deaf, dumb and blind when they know the White House is in danger of being exposed…they all know what happened and why.

d1carter on November 19, 2012 at 10:24 AM

Our once free press has been Lewinskied.

Herb on November 19, 2012 at 10:32 AM

Like F&F, nothing will come of this. They will continue to openly lie, distract, drag feet, etc – and the media will help them, pointing at every shiny object along the way to help distract everyone, etc.

In the end, as we all already know, none of these criminals from Obama on down will ever face consequences for their actions. The rule of law died awhile ago, and the Constitution is no longer in effect, guys.

Midas on November 19, 2012 at 10:35 AM

WH had to have changed CIA talking points on Benghazi

“What did you say? We didn’t hear you…. Oh, that. We nobody cares about that.” — The MSM

farsighted on November 19, 2012 at 10:37 AM

The White House is Uber-Nixonian…

Khun Joe on November 19, 2012 at 10:37 AM

Where is the film of the attack? Where is the written order to do “whatever is necessary” as Obama said that he gave? Or, was it conversely that the president, when finding out that Americans were under attack, he just said “whatever…“?

ted c on November 19, 2012 at 10:46 AM

Benghazi, LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Nobody cares about Benghazi.
gumbyandpokey on November 2, 2012 at 1:14 AM

Solaratov on November 19, 2012 at 10:52 AM

Our local paper had a story on this yesterday from the AP. Petraus apparently testified that he didn’t say it was AQ terrorists in the closed door party because he didn’t want the bad guys to know we knew it was them and they wouldn’t be looking for us to try and follow them. Now if that isn’t the stupidest story I’ve ever heard.

Kissmygrits on November 19, 2012 at 10:20 AM

Guess who else isn’t buying it?

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, chairwoman of the Senate Select Intelligence Committee, said on NBC, “I don’t know who we were protecting” by removing references to terrorism from the talking points.

“I do know that the answer given to us is we didn’t want to name a group until we had some certainty,” Feinstein, a Democrat, continued. “Well, where this went awry is, anybody that brings weapons and mortars and RPGs (rocket-propelled grenades) and breaks into an asset of the United States is a terrorist in my view.” Source

Flora Duh on November 19, 2012 at 10:56 AM

I strongly believe that Obama was watching this horrific quadruple murder happen in real time in the Situation Room. Then, he went to bed, in proparing for his Campaign Trip to Vegas.

Cold,callous, narcissist.

kingsjester on November 19, 2012 at 9:15 AM

Agreed.

The Campaign/Election Über Alles!

ShainS on November 19, 2012 at 11:25 AM

What should the GOP do?

Happy Nomad on November 19, 2012 at 9:19 AM

Impeach Holder. Then Impeach Obama. Impeach each and every traitor.

Sure, they’ll not be convicted in the Senate … but who knows what further information or patriot might come out as a result — and at least stain their names and set the precedent that this is what happens to all future ‘rats who lie, obstruct, and commit treasonous acts against the United States of America.

ShainS on November 19, 2012 at 11:30 AM

The White House is Uber-Nixonian…

Khun Joe on November 19, 2012 at 10:37 AM

Obama and his gang make Nixon’s antics look like a college fraternity pranks.

rplat on November 19, 2012 at 11:33 AM

The Ambassador is dead thanks to Obama’s criminal negligence and his corpse has been covered up with lies upon lies.

Meanwhile the MSM shows a grinning Obama kissing people in Asia.

Stevens face will be Obama’s hidden Portrait of Dorian Grey.

Decomposing his presidency slowly but certainly.

profitsbeard on November 19, 2012 at 11:38 AM

I know this thread has sort of died out, but here’s a good segment that Senator Ayote did this morning on Fox and Friends.

http://t.co/SzMnEiEl

Flora Duh on November 19, 2012 at 11:43 AM

Watching this administration in action is like watching some street hustler playing a game of Three-card Monte.

NotCoach on November 19, 2012 at 9:42 AM

No, this administration is the Keystone Cops.

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=JVNSQ72wvlc

The media are the hustlers manipulating the message.

dthorny on November 19, 2012 at 12:02 PM

Let’s face it, this is a dictatorial regime that will do whatever it pleases and there’s nothing that can be done to them. As citizens, we’re helpless and without power to change anything.

rplat on November 19, 2012 at 9:28 AM

This. The situation is hopeless, disgusting and more than a little frightening.

Obama and his regime are lawless, criminal thugs and goons. I’ve been saying it for months. We are no longer a nation of laws.

Look at Obama’s pals like Corzine. Look at the folks formerly running Solyndra who walked away with 500 million of our money.

dogsoldier on November 19, 2012 at 12:24 PM

kingsjester on November 19, 2012 at 9:15 AM

That’s exactly what happened.

dogsoldier on November 19, 2012 at 12:26 PM

Chambliss: WH had to have changed CIA talking points on Benghazi

Of course King Barry and his (p)sychophants did!
THAT, as they say, is a no-brainer.
Now, if those on the Left offer up a plausible explanation to the contrary, count your fingers, rings, wallets, jewelry, and credibility when they’re done.
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on November 19, 2012 at 12:57 PM

I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again. Democrats dogged the Bush administration until Scooter Libby went to prison. This is so much more criminal than his alleged offense. Nothing short of a dedicated special prosecutor will resolve this, and the Democrats know it and will never allow it. All the rest is political posturing.

asouthernbelle on November 19, 2012 at 3:27 PM

I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again. Democrats dogged the Bush administration until Scooter Libby went to prison. This is so much more criminal than his alleged offense. Nothing short of a dedicated special prosecutor will resolve this, and the Democrats know it and will never allow it. All the rest is political posturing.

asouthernbelle on November 19, 2012 at 3:27 PM

Scoter Libby went to prison. Sandy Berger walks free.

All you need to know about modern politics in two sentences, once you learn what happened in those cases.

tom on November 19, 2012 at 4:05 PM

Of course the WH is lying. They always lie. They left our guys to die. Obviously life isn’t important to them. The looks on both of those faces, O’s and Hill’s told the story. They both looked as if they had been caught. Of course there is more to this story. Is it more than just a foreign policy blunder? Probably. There is something very important that they had to let fellow Americans die. What is it? Inquiring minds need to know.

BetseyRoss on November 19, 2012 at 6:01 PM

It doesn’t matter who changed the talking points or why. That’s a penny in the gutter we’re fighting over when the $100 Bill floating away on the breeze is when did the White House know that the attack was occurring, and why didn’t they send help? Everything else is smoke to cover up and prevent that question from being properly pursued.

Clinton, Panetta, Rice, Biden and Obama are all unfit to govern a cheese grater. Following a successful Seal Team operation, they all thumped their collective chests and proclaimed victory, impressing the rubes over how coordinated they were in handling real-time information from the field and making the tough call. Strong intel supports that they had real-time streams of this event as well, but did nothing. Make them prove what they knew and why they didn’t respond.

Freelancer on November 19, 2012 at 10:57 PM