Pickering: Why would we interview the person in charge when we could blame the flunkies, or something

posted at 8:41 am on May 13, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Want to know why State Department whistleblower Eric Nordstrom called the Accountability Review Board a whitewash designed to protect the highest ranks at Foggy Bottom?  Take a listen to the man who ran the ARB.  CBS News’ Bob Schieffer asked Thomas Pickering why the supposedly independent panel didn’t bother to depose the Secretary of State who was personally briefed about the attack on the Benghazi consulate by the second-ranking member of her mission in Libya while it unfolded.  Pickering replied that they’d already decided who was responsible for the failures in Benghazi and they saw no need to talk with the person in charge (via NRO):

“The decisions were made and reviewed at the level that we fixed responsibility for failures of performance,” Pickering told CBS’ Bob Schieffer, adding, ”I believe that that’s correct.” According to Pickering, he and his colleagues had ample opportunity to interview Secretary Clinton, but concluded that conducting an interview with her was not necessary. “We knew where the responsibility rested,” he said.

Pickering isn’t too impressed with the whistleblowers, apparently:

Appearing Sunday on “Face the Nation,” Pickering defended the report, which he co-authored with former Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman Adm. Mike Mullen, against criticisms from three former and current State Department officials who testified last week before the House Oversight Committee. Greg Hicks – the No. 2 official in Libya at the time of the strike that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans – told the committee he believed the report “let people off the hook.”

“They’ve tried to point a finger at people more senior than where we found the decisions were made,” Pickering said, citing specifically Clinton and Undersecretary for Management Patrick Kennedy. Mark Thompson, the deputy coordinator for operations in the State Department’s counterterrorism bureau, told the House committee last week that Clinton attempted to cut out the bureau from communications about the attack.

Well, it’s difficult to find decision-making where one refuses to look. Recall what Nordstrom told Congress last week:

Nordstrom suggested the board’s report attempted to protect higher-ranking officials, and specifically faulted it for not looking at the key role played by Under Secretary for Management Patrick Kennedy in failing to deliver the request for more security to Clinton.

He said a similar failure occurred in the 1998 bombing of the U.S. Embassy in Kenya, which killed 19 Americans.

“[The ARB] has decided to fix responsibility on the assistant secretary level and below,” said Nordstrom. “And the message to my colleagues is that if you’re above a certain level, no matter what your decision is no one’s going to question it.

“I look back and I see the last time we had a major attack was East Africa. Who was in that same position, when the unheeded messengers … were raising those concerns? It just so happens it was the same person. The under secretary for management was in that same role before.

“There’s something apparently wrong with the process of how those security recommendations are raised to the secretary.”

It’s also difficult to see the pattern when you’re deliberately fixed on the anything but the big picture.


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This DC regime took good notes from the Kremlin. The previous regime was pretty good at it also.

acyl72 on May 13, 2013 at 8:44 AM

Hey, let’s launch an investigation, but we’ll draw our own conclusions about the outcome first, and only follow up on things that reinforce our conclusion!

This should be the new scientific method!

Oh wait, it already is

Chris of Rights on May 13, 2013 at 8:46 AM

So, the flunkies get to make all the decisions, accept all the blame, and don’t get to ride around in the fancy planes stocked with booze, huh??

What do we have “The Leadership” for then???

ted c on May 13, 2013 at 8:46 AM

Oh wait, it already is…

Chris of Rights on May 13, 2013 at 8:46 AM

Heh! ++

ted c on May 13, 2013 at 8:48 AM

According to Pickering, he and his colleagues had ample opportunity to interview Secretary Clinton, but concluded that conducting an interview with her was not necessary. “We knew where the responsibility rested,” he said.

Oh really? So who may I ask is responsible? Can Pickering provide a name? Who gave the “stand down” order? Who changed the talking points? Whose job was it to brief Obama on what was going on?

Doughboy on May 13, 2013 at 8:48 AM

A higher eduction is so overrated..

Electrongod on May 13, 2013 at 8:50 AM

People around the Clintons have a habit of ending up dead. Pickering decided he didn’t want to be the latest to “commit suicide”.

Bitter Clinger on May 13, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Sentences first, then the trial. This regime really is Alice in Wonderland. Thanks, lofo voters. Enjoy the ride.

tngmv on May 13, 2013 at 8:52 AM

As I posted on another thread:

You really think a professional diplomat that carefully avoided any real scrutiny of the State Department is going to say “Yeah Mike and I really screwed up with that report. The American people deserved better.”

Pickering and Mullen did exactly what they were told to do. Find “problems” without placing blame on anybody at a high level of authority. Do not get Hillary Clinton on the record about what she knew and when she knew it. Do not be overly aggressive in interviewing those involved on the ground. Do not create problems for the rat-eared coward.

The ARB was designed to give the pretense of fact-finding while producing a fact-free product.

Happy Nomad on May 13, 2013 at 8:53 AM

Pickering and Mullen. Worst investigative team evah!!!

dddave on May 13, 2013 at 8:53 AM

acyl72 on May 13, 2013 at 8:44 AM

Hey look , its Jay Carney!

dmann on May 13, 2013 at 8:55 AM

According to Pickering, he and his colleagues had ample opportunity to interview Secretary Clinton, but concluded that conducting an interview with her was not necessary. “We knew where the responsibility rested,” he said.

I looked in the dictionary under “Statesman” but to my disappointment, Amb. Pickering’s picture wasn’t there. So I tried “Diplomat” – still missing. Strangely enough, though, I found it under “Toadie”. Odd, that…

bofh on May 13, 2013 at 8:55 AM

Thomas Pickering was questionable recently on something else too, and I don’t recall what it was, but the guy is the very picture of what’s wrong with the State Department and Government Bureaucracy. The guy is a joke.

beatcanvas on May 13, 2013 at 8:56 AM

“Investigative Team”? If these guys were dogs, they couldn’t smell a beefsteak if they were leaning against it!

tngmv on May 13, 2013 at 8:57 AM

anyone really surprised?
our elected “reps” exempt themselves from the laws they force upon us.
they (as a group, not everyone) set the system so they can do whatever they want.
voters need to wake up and vote them all out often.

dmacleo on May 13, 2013 at 8:57 AM

Tool

cmsinaz on May 13, 2013 at 8:59 AM

Oh really? So who may I ask is responsible? Can Pickering provide a name? Who gave the “stand down” order? Who changed the talking points? Whose job was it to brief Obama on what was going on?

Doughboy on May 13, 2013 at 8:48 AM

To be fair, the ARB really was only looking at the failures within the State Department. Pickering and Mullen went in with a charter to “do no harm” to the political aspirations of a particular fat-bottomed cow or the administration of a particular rat-eared coward.

But when you have an e-mail from an Under Secretary of State for Mid-eastern Affairs talking about the attack occuring by Al Qaeda TWO DAYS BEFORE SUSAN RICE LIED HER ASS ABOUT YOUTUBE VIDEOS….. You’ve got to wonder why Pickering and Mullen threw away their professional reputations to protect these two worthless criminals.

Happy Nomad on May 13, 2013 at 8:59 AM

I looked in the dictionary under “Statesman” but to my disappointment, Amb. Pickering’s picture wasn’t there. So I tried “Diplomat” – still missing. Strangely enough, though, I found it under “Toadie”. Odd, that…

bofh on May 13, 2013 at 8:55 AM

I like the Bloom County version of “Statesman.” Dead politician. What this country needs is more statesmen.

Happy Nomad on May 13, 2013 at 9:01 AM

People around the Clintons have a habit of ending up dead. Pickering decided he didn’t want to be the latest to “commit suicide”.

Bitter Clinger on May 13, 2013 at 8:51 AM

Or get assigned to Libya.

TerryW on May 13, 2013 at 9:02 AM

The ARB was designed to give the pretense of fact-finding while producing a fact-free product.

Happy Nomad on May 13, 2013 at 8:53 AM

Why would you bite the ass that hired you to do the report?

Pursuant to Title III of the Omnibus Diplomatic and Antiterrorism Act of 1986, 22 U.S.C. § 4831
et seq.
, (the “Act”), Secretary of State Hillary RodhamClinton convened an Accountability Review Board (ARB) for Benghazi toexamine the facts and circumstances surrounding the September 11-12, 2012,killings of four U.S. government personnel, including the U.S. Ambas

sador toLibya, John Christopher Stevens, in Benghazi, Libya.

CTSherman on May 13, 2013 at 9:02 AM

Sentences first, then the trial. This regime really is Alice in Wonderland. Thanks, lofo voters. Enjoy the ride.

tngmv on May 13, 2013 at 8:52 AM

Also the position of many an ‘advocacy’ journalist, even when they’re working for newspapers, magazines or TV networks that are supposed to be unbiased.

In this case, the per-determined conclusion was “Republicans are using this for partisan politics, so let’s not investigate too deeply, if at all.” It’s why what stories there were about the Benghazi attacks were perfunctory at best until last week, and focused mainly on the low-level failures, taking extra care not to go too high up in the food chain (and there are some, no doubt, who still want to keep it that way, since they see the looming Obama-v.-Clinton blame game battle as being counterproductive to the results they’d like to see happen between now and the end of 2016).

jon1979 on May 13, 2013 at 9:03 AM

It’s also difficult to see the pattern when you’re deliberately fixed on the anything but the big picture cankles.

Enhanced.

hillsoftx on May 13, 2013 at 9:03 AM

“Investigative Team”? If these guys were dogs, they couldn’t smell a beefsteak if they were leaning against it!

tngmv on May 13, 2013 at 8:57 AM

Heh!!!+++

ted c on May 13, 2013 at 9:04 AM

Every dept has their own Lt Calley.

docflash on May 13, 2013 at 9:04 AM

Presumably this man is intelligent yet I don’t understand what he said at all. He spoke in total circles.

ctmom on May 13, 2013 at 9:05 AM

David Burge ‏@iowahawkblog 10m

Going out on a limb, there Gloria: CNN’s Borger says Benghazi talking points edited ‘to the point of inaccuracy’

ted c on May 13, 2013 at 9:05 AM

Of course Pickering is not going to interview Hillary. The commission after all was reporting to her.

PackerBronco on May 13, 2013 at 9:06 AM

…..’edited to the point of inaccuracy’…….

that lil’ phraseology needs to be dissected further, IMO.

ted c on May 13, 2013 at 9:06 AM

Thomas Pickering – specialty: WHITE WASHING

GarandFan on May 13, 2013 at 9:07 AM

USA Today cavalierly reporting that Obama “may be asked” about IRS and Benghazi. Let’s help him out—one happens to be the site where terrorists attack America, and the other one is in Libya where people were left to die.

ted c on May 13, 2013 at 9:09 AM

If Bob Schieffer had not been confused with Pickering’s long, disembodied, nonsense answers to questions, he would have had a show worth watching.

Pickering had so many holes in his answers that even I could have ripped him to pieces.

Vince on May 13, 2013 at 9:09 AM

Did or did not president Obama say on Benghazi ‘the ultimate buck stops with me’?

So this is just another Obama’s Red Line yet again?

Sir Napsalot on May 13, 2013 at 9:09 AM

How clubby!

ExpressoBold on May 13, 2013 at 9:13 AM

They are all narrative writers–that is the only skill needed for this administration. When all of these hacks start yapping “Gop is just playing partisan politics”, why hasn’t anyone revealed Greg Hicks, whistleblower #1, voted for Bill Clinton and Obama twice, per his attorney.

hillsoftx on May 13, 2013 at 9:14 AM

Did or did not president Obama say on Benghazi ‘the ultimate buck stops with me’?

So this is just another Obama’s Red Line yet again?

Sir Napsalot on May 13, 2013 at 9:09 AM

The truth does not require twelve revisions. The truth does not require twelve revisions. The truth does not require twelve revisions…….

Repeat as many times as necessary.

Happy Nomad on May 13, 2013 at 9:15 AM

In today’s paper, I read the AP account of Pickering’s appearance, which never mentioned Ambassador Hicks’ testimony or the drafts found by ABC’s John Karl, and thought, “How do they think they can get away with this?”

cbenoistd on May 13, 2013 at 9:15 AM

Hey. Pickering. Yeah, you. Fat-ass. Do those low level State Department deputies have the authority to issue a freakin stand down order?

Didn’t think so.

BigAlSouth on May 13, 2013 at 9:17 AM

“Transparency” apparently has a new definition.

You leftist trash who gave us this retard administration can pound sand, thanks very much.

Bishop on May 13, 2013 at 9:19 AM

I think the biggest surprise for this administration is that the Sunday news shows are talking about this in May 2013. I’m sure they expected this to be over and done with after the election.

They obviously hired Pickering and his crew to put a nice big bow on it. “See we investigated, two people got canned, and now we move on.”

You can just imagine the meetings…”Get me three..no two likely candidates to terminate. Here let’s put names in a hat.”

dirtseller on May 13, 2013 at 9:20 AM

Sentences first, then the trial. This regime really is Alice in Wonderland. Thanks, lofo voters. Enjoy the ride.

tngmv on May 13, 2013 at 8:52 AM

Except the ones responsible were ‘fired’ then quietly ‘re-hired’ shortly afterwards, as I recall. Or am I thinking of something else?

Midas on May 13, 2013 at 9:21 AM

They obviously hired Pickering and his crew to put a nice big bow on it. “See we investigated, two people got canned, and now we move on.”

You can just imagine the meetings…”Get me three..no two likely candidates to terminate. Here let’s put names in a hat.”

dirtseller on May 13, 2013 at 9:20 AM

You can bet that those two people are working somewhere in the bureaucracy and probably with a promotion.

Vince on May 13, 2013 at 9:22 AM

I think Pickering said they were tasked to assess security, not anything else. He had no authority to investigate Hil or bo.The report never goes up the food chain.

tim c on May 13, 2013 at 9:25 AM

Wait a minute…So Pickering tells Schieffer he did interview Sec. Clinton but didn’t ask her about anything on Benghazi because she had already stated who was internally responsible for those decisions but also said she was responsible or something…What???

workingclass artist on May 13, 2013 at 9:29 AM

he and his colleagues had ample opportunity to interview Secretary Clinton, but concluded that conducting an interview with her was not necessary. “We knew where the responsibility rested,” he said.

Fat lotta good that does the 4 of us right now, jackass!
@AmbassadorStevens
@Woods
@Smith
@Doherty

ted c on May 13, 2013 at 9:29 AM

Wow. Color me impressed. That guy sure knows how to use a lot of words to say nothing.

Is that a natural talent or a well-developed skill?

CJ on May 13, 2013 at 9:34 AM

“The decisions were made and reviewed at the level that we fixed responsibility for failures of performance,” Pickering told CBS’ Bob Schieffer, adding, ”I believe that that’s correct.”

No it’s not. Out here in the real world, you can delegate authority, but not responsibility. Ultimately, the person or people in charge are accountable for every act of their subordinates.

RadClown on May 13, 2013 at 9:38 AM

I’d like to know if it’s part of Obama’s & Former Sec. of State Clinton’s standard diplomatic policy to invite islamic imams chant muslim prayers in arabic condemning fallen servicemen/personnel as damned infidels in Ramp ceremonies before the caskets takeoff flights back to the US…like what happened to the Navy Seals & support teams from Seal Team 6 at Bagram Base in Afghanistan?

http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2013/05/breaking-seal-parents-demand-obama-explain-why-their-son-was-allowed-to-be-desecrated-at-his-memorial-service-by-islamic-cleric-video/

workingclass artist on May 13, 2013 at 9:40 AM

“Rep. James Lankford (R-OK) asked Nordstrom pointedly: “Mr. Nordstrom, before you left as RSO, did the facilities have the number of security personnel that you had requested?”

Nordstrom replied, “No they did not.”

Lankford then said: “Mr. Nordstrom, there are a very, very small number of facilities worldwide that are considered by [the Government Accountability Office] critical or high-threat level for personnel serving in our different embassies and consulates. Tripoli and Benghazi, were they listed and critical or high-threat level?”

Nordstrom replied, “They were.”

Lankford then asked: “By statute, Mr. Nordstrom, who has authority to place personnel in a facility that does not meet the minimum OSPB standards?”

Nordstrom replied:

The OSPB standards go in tandem with SECCA, which is the Secure Embassy Construction and Counterterrorism Act, both of which derived out of the East Africa bombings, or were strengthened after that. It’s my understanding that since we were the sole occupants of both of those facilities–Benghazi and Tripoli–the only person who could grant waivers or exceptions to those was the Secretary of State…”

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/05/12/Former-RSO-Eric-Nordstrom-Only-Sec-Of-State-Could-Have-Waived-Security-Requirements-For-Benghazi

workingclass artist on May 13, 2013 at 9:43 AM

I seem to recall a story in the Navy that “even if he is on the pier, if the ship sinks, the captain is responsible”.

tngmv on May 13, 2013 at 9:46 AM

These flunkies who are carrying out the nefarious plots and schemes of this massively corrupt Obamuh sadministration don’t deserve to have the freedoms of true Americans cuz they don’t comprehend the meaning or responsibilities of true freedom.

stukinIL4now on May 13, 2013 at 9:48 AM

Pickering: Why would we interview the person in charge when we could blame the flunkies, or something

Maybe a classified version of the report does, but the publicly available version of ARB report doesnot name names. It does not blame anyone in particular.

It says that some unnamed higher ups in State and intelligence didn’t do as good of a job as the should have — IOW, mistakes were made. But it also does not call for disciplinary action or conclude that anyone was derelict in their duty.

Basically it says to unnamed people “do a better job next time guys”.

It is basically a bureaucratic document that is as close to a white wash as you could find given that four people were murdered and “mistakes were made”.

Further, it does not really address anything post 9/12/2012. It is primarily concerned with the failure to provide adequate security, the failure of intelligence to anticipate the attacks, the failure to have any contingency plans in place, and the failure to respond. That is a lot of failures for which no one is blamed by name.

The ARB does not address how the attacks were presented to the American people. It does not address how thew admin misled the American people. It does not address the “video” that was alleged to be the cause of the “violent demonstrations”. It does not address the talking points. IIRC, it does not address the FBI’s failure to begin its investigation ASAP. Etc., etc.

farsighted on May 13, 2013 at 9:52 AM

BBC Breaking News ‏@BBCBreaking 27m

At least 9 dead and 17 injured after car bomb explodes outside hospital in Libyan city of #Benghazi http://bbc.in/17l7dA1

so maybe NOW it was the video….?…..

*ducks*.

ted c on May 13, 2013 at 9:54 AM

Now back to Arias!

racquetballer on May 13, 2013 at 9:54 AM

The Under Secretary for Management is a Kennedy, do you really think anything will happen here? Shrillary already confessed, so has Holder started working on prosecution? People died as a result of her incompetence, shouldn’t there be some charge involving murder coming her way? Her second in command at State should really be sweating bullets by now, too.

Kissmygrits on May 13, 2013 at 9:56 AM

Except the ones responsible were ‘fired’ then quietly ‘re-hired’ shortly afterwards, as I recall. Or am I thinking of something else?

Midas on May 13, 2013 at 9:21 AM

You’re remembering correctly.
They pushed around a few desks at State, but no one was fired. Pickering himself said they found “performance inadequacies” but not “willful misconduct,” so the four officials who were singled out would not face discipline.

Another day. Another ruse.

lynncgb on May 13, 2013 at 9:57 AM

“We knew where the responsibility rested,” he said.

With unnamed lower level scape goats, apparently.

In Comrade O’s brave new fundamentally transformed America high level government officials and elected politicians are no longer responsible for what the bureaucracy does. That is, not unless it is something really good. Like taking out bin Laden. Then people at the highest level get most of the credit.

farsighted on May 13, 2013 at 9:58 AM

Anyone out there concerned that the whole time this crap is
unwinding ( Banghazi , IRS ) no one is paying attention to the
amnesty bill ? Not to say these points aren’t crucial also .

Lucano on May 13, 2013 at 10:02 AM

Darrell Issa ✔ @DarrellIssa

.@GOPoversight to depose Ambassador Pickering & Admiral Mullen regarding #Benghazi @StateDept report.
1:26 PM – 12 May 2013

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) tweeted out yesterday that the House Oversight Committee will call in Ambassador Pickering and Admiral Mullen over their flawed, incomplete and biased report on the Benghazi massacre and cover-up.

http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2013/05/issa-oversight-committee-to-depose-ambassador-pickering-admiral-mullen-over-benghazi/

Whitehouse leaked the IRS story early to divert media attention from Benghazi hearings…

workingclass artist on May 13, 2013 at 10:07 AM

Not like his credibility is on the line, or anything.

BKeyser on May 13, 2013 at 10:12 AM

‘ProtectHillary’s2016PresidentialRunAtAllCosts.com’

easyt65 on May 13, 2013 at 10:15 AM

Has anyone seen Tommy Christopher’s story about this at Mediate. All these guys are too cute by half with their code words. Refused to appear, would love to appear, was told I wasn’t wanted, could have been a witness called by the Dems, no, really, ready to be there, White House pulled me back. But Mr. Christopher didn’t catch the preemptive conclusion to the Pickering/Mullen report. Nuance.

Cindy Munford on May 13, 2013 at 10:19 AM

Jay Carney’s Credibility was DESTROYED on Friday when among the embarrassing lies he told was the most obvious that NO, there was NOT an ‘off-the-record’ ‘Deep Background’ meeting regarding Benghazi with select members of media regarding Benghazi’….

Obama’s credibility has all but evaporated except among the most die-hard partisan Obama FAN, as everyone knows you can tell the man is lying because his lips are moving.

Hillary’s record of lying / perjury is long and distiguished, no to mention the woman hs proven over & over she would sleep with a snake (or a ‘pig’ – Slick Willey) to get a chance to be President.

easyt65 on May 13, 2013 at 10:21 AM

I saw him again this morning on MJ; the longer we keep him in front of a camera the better.

Tater Salad on May 13, 2013 at 10:27 AM

From the vid (paraphrase):

“Two of the four were relieved of their jobs. The State Department is now considering what further steps to take ….” [0:20]

That doesn’t mean they were fired, does it? I thought they all were kept on but put in different jobs, or am I confusing this with F&F? And what’s with the State Department still in

Excerpt from the article:

According to Pickering, he and his colleagues had ample opportunity to interview Secretary Clinton, but concluded that conducting an interview with her was not necessary. “We knew where the responsibility rested,” he said.

But from the vid he says “We interviewed Secretary Clinton, Deputy Secretary Burns and Deputy Secretary Nides ….” right at the 0:55 mark. How do you interview somone without asking any questions? Did this “interview” consist solely of Clinton telling them what the report should say, and that’s why this controversy hinges on ‘not asking Clinton any questions?’

By the way, where are the timeline points for the ARB process and Clinton accepting responsibility. I’d be interested in seeing if Clinton accepted responsibility before or after the ARB did their thing.

Dusty on May 13, 2013 at 10:28 AM

I saw him again this morning on MJ…

Tater Salad on May 13, 2013 at 10:27 AM

You watch that show? That’s an embarrassing admission…

beatcanvas on May 13, 2013 at 10:32 AM

Dusty on May 13, 2013 at 10:28 AM

They just filled her in on who was getting the blame, everyone needs to be on the same page.

Cindy Munford on May 13, 2013 at 10:34 AM

Why would anyone pick this guy to head up this investigation…? Uh, ooops…I see now.

d1carter on May 13, 2013 at 10:39 AM

Of course CBS,ABC,CNN News Executives have family members working for Obama & Clinton in NSC & State related to Benghazi…

“Make no mistake: Benghazi is a major scandal. Benghazi is a scandal before, during and after the terrorist attack that left four Americas dead, including an ambassador.

For months before, there were warnings about weak security at the U.S. Consulate in Libya; no one paid attention. During the attack, when Americans were begging for help, the White House ignored their pleas, sent no help.

And after? That’s when the Obama scandal falls into the predictable second-term pattern his predecessors all learned the very hard way. Faced with a crisis, the Obama White House panicked. “We can’t have a terrorist strike two months before Election Day, so … let’s not have a terrorist strike two months before Election Day.” Cue the Cover-Up.

So little is known about what happened in Benghazi: Where was the commander in chief that night? No pictures from the Situation Room this time. Why didn’t the Pentagon authorize a quick-response team to swoop in? Members of the military say they were ready — burning — to go. The call came in: Stand down. Let them die. There were dozens of witnesses to the attack that night: Where are they? What do they know? What really happened that night?

And who forced the heavy-handed redactions of those infamous “talking points,” the ones that sent Mr. Obama’s ambassador to the United Nations onto the Sunday talk shows to declare that the attack was just the culmination of a spontaneous protest over an anti-Islam video posted on YouTube?

Carnival barker Jay Carney looked almost ashen Friday as he took the podium to face a suddenly invigorated press corps. Of course, the public briefing came after a private session with “reporters who matter,” a sure sign the White House is in full hunker-down mode — and, more precisely, terrified.

“Again,” one newly curious reporter asked, “what role did the White House play, not just in making but in directing changes that took place to these?”

“Well,” the carney said, “thank you for that question. The way to look at this, I think, is to start from that week and understand that in the wake of the attacks in Benghazi, an effort was underway to find out what happened, who was responsible. In response to a request from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence to the CIA, the CIA began a process of developing points that could be used in public by members of Congress, by members of that committee. And that process, as is always the case — again, led by the CIA — involved input from a variety of …”

Enough. You get the point: Full Spin Cycle…

For the record, this is what the CIA “generated”:

“Since April, there have been at least five other attacks against foreign interests in Benghazi by unidentified assailants.” That line was stricken: Everything was fine there — fine fine fine.

And: “We do know that Islamic extremists with ties to Al Qaeda participated in the attack.” That line, too, was deleted by … someone. Instead, this was inserted: “There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations.”

Despite protestations by the White House, this scandal is just beginning. And the White House has picked a very bad scapegoat: the Central Intelligence Agency. The CIA follows RFK’s edict: “Don’t get mad, get even.” And when the CIA gets even, it isn’t pretty.

With the White House putting all blame on the agency, expect push back this week — nuclear push back. Gen. David H. Petraeus, the former director forced to resign after a sex scandal, is a dangerous man to the Obama administration. Mad and intent on getting even, he’s already talking, telling one reporter the talking points were “useless” and that he preferred not to use them at all. The floodgates will open this week, and by the end of business Friday, the scandal will be full blown…”

Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/may/12/curl-watch-out-petraeus-benghazi-scandal/?page=2#ixzz2TBRNopbj
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

workingclass artist on May 13, 2013 at 10:39 AM

By the way, where are the timeline points for the ARB process and Clinton accepting responsibility. I’d be interested in seeing if Clinton accepted responsibility before or after the ARB did their thing.

[Dusty on May 13, 2013 at 10:28 AM]

Never mind. There is an extensive one at Wiki.

Dusty on May 13, 2013 at 10:46 AM

This man is soooo un-American I just can’t belive my eyes what I’m reading. You have Hillary saying to the face of a mother whos son died that it was a video when it’s now becoming clear that was not the case ever! Corruption cover-up whatever… it is a horrible person who does this disservice to another American. The have no moral compass.

karlinsync on May 13, 2013 at 11:15 AM

Pickering in the FTN interview [1:35]:

On the other hand, the legislation setting up our board made it very clear that they didn’t want a situation in which a department or agency had accepted responsibility, and then nobody looked to where the decisions made, and how and what way those decisions affected performance on security and whether people were thus responsible for failures for performance. That’s what we were asked to do and that’s what we did.

What’s with this BS? First off, the legislation doesn’t “make that very clear” at all. In fact it is silent on intent, other than to say “conduct an inquiry” from which Pickering’s infers his interpretation, which is fair enough. However, his interpretation is absurdly at odds with his conducting the inquiry by not asking questions of Clinton because she “accepted responsibility”. So, Clinton accepted responsibility and then nobody on the ARB looked to where Clinton was responsible for failures of performance.

On a side note, transcribing some of this allowed me to notice some of Pickering’s wheezes while trying to say all he wanted to say as quickly and in as few breaths as possible. I’d be interested in seeing him in other venues so as to get a better feel of whether what he said here was prepared ahead of time and memorized.

Dusty on May 13, 2013 at 11:25 AM

So, Clinton accepted responsibility and then nobody on the ARB looked to where Clinton was responsible for failures of performance.

Dusty on May 13, 2013 at 11:25 AM

Another bit of rhetorical and bureaucratic ducking, dodging, and weaving to file with the keyword “Clintonian” attached.

“I take responsibility. But it’s not my fault. Find out who reporting to me is at fault and let me know.”

Of course, Comrade O will be saying the same thing about the IRS scandal. And about Benghazi-gate if the investigation ever gets past the MSM’s defensive shield protecting him on that.

farsighted on May 13, 2013 at 11:48 AM

Let me investigate myself. Hey! I did nothing wrong!

Now we hear the same thing happened in the Kenya embassy bombings, but no one picked up on it then. Of course, the State Department wasn’t in the process of arming the ROP Freedom fighters and helping the local government turn to radical (normal) Islam at that time.

TerryW on May 13, 2013 at 12:17 PM

Another internal investigation, proving the the blame always rolls downhill. Pickering and Mullens are administration toadies out there covering up for the leaders, while those at the bottom of the totem pole run in fear. Power breeds contempt and contempt breeds corruption. Washington DC is a rats nest of corruption and nobody is doing a thing about it.

savage24 on May 13, 2013 at 12:22 PM

“it is much harder to remember the lie than it is to tell the truth”

On CBS’s ‘Face the Nation’, Pickering stated he did NOT interview Hillary Clinton.

On NBC’s ‘Meet the Press’, Pickering stated he DID interview Hillary Clinton.

You can take your pick as to which statement from Pickering was true, but you cannot have them both.

Freddy on May 13, 2013 at 1:19 PM

Wikipeda

Nonfeasance is to ignore and take no indicated action – neglect.
Misfeasance is to take inappropriate action or give intentionally incorrect advice.
Malfeasance is hostile, aggressive action taken to injure the client’s interests.

.

Take your pick.

burt on May 13, 2013 at 2:03 PM

Pickering and Bob Schieffer? What is this a PSA for Altzheimer’s disease?

Tom C on May 13, 2013 at 3:51 PM