Kirsten Powers: More Americans will be put in danger if the media doesn't start challenging the White House on Libya

A few reporters have stepped up, of course. Eli Lake at Newsweek has done a bang-up job, CNN has stuck with the story all week, Tapper had a solid report last night about who knew what and when. But perhaps we’re asking too much from the media generally; there are, after all, Romney gaffes to be covered. And if there’s one thing that America wants and needs from its media right now, it’s more navel-gazing horse-race election dreck.

Not KP, though. Good lord, I think she’s gone rogue:

There are so many unanswered questions, not just about Libya, but also about Cairo. Who is it that Rice thinks “widely disseminated” this “movie”? Surely she can’t believe that the Egyptian Coptic Christian who made the video had the capacity or even desire to put it in the hands of the people who did the inciting. Also, has the administration noticed that the mob in Cairo, so spontaneously upset about the video, just happened to be carrying an Islamist flag to hoist over our embassy? On 9/11. What a massive coincidence.

Also, where did Rice get her very detailed information about the attack in Libya? She referred to the attackers as “a small handful of heavily armed mobsters” who merely took advantage of a growing protest over the video, a protest that now appears never to have occurred, as was reported three days before her appearances. The administration is careful to point out that Rice couched everything she said as being the best assessment at the time. Fine. But where did that assessment come from and how could it have been so wrong, especially when all signs pointed to a terrorist attack?

We know now that before the attacks on 9/11 that killed 3,000 Americans, more attention should have been paid to attacks against the U.S. overseas. These were warnings of what was to come. They say curiosity killed the cat. In this case, lack of curiosity on the part of the American media very well may kill more Americans.

In a different political environment, if Congress wasn’t back home campaigning for reelection and demands for answers from the top weren’t fated to be met with screeching about how the GOP is “politicizing terror” before the big vote, I think the House would already be moving towards holding hearings about what the White House knew. As it is, I wouldn’t expect them to pursue this even after election day; they’ll be consumed with hashing out a compromise on the Bush tax cuts and the sequester. This seems fated to end up off the public’s radar sooner rather than later. Like the man said, a bump in the road.

Here’s KP on Wednesday’s “Special Report” previewing her Newsweek op-ed today. Click the image to watch. Exit quotation from Mike Huckabee: “This White House has been discredited and its credibility, certainly the promises of transparency, have been completely decimated by their actions.”

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Jazz Shaw 5:01 PM on March 22, 2023