On one hand, you have to admire the chutzpah it takes to say this to Candy Crowley’s face when she accuses Barack Obama of doing what he accused Mitt Romney of doing — shooting first on Libya and asking questions later. Axelrod tries to conflate Romney’s statement on the Cairo embassy statement (later disavowed by the White House) with Libya, which the CNN host missed, but she presses the point with Axelrod instead. The White House insisted for days that this wasn’t a terrorist attack — isn’t that shooting first and aiming later?
In one sense, Crowley misses the larger point. Axelrod claims that Susan Rice only repeated what she’d been told by the intelligence community, but that’s highly debatable. We know now that the White House designated this a terrorist attack within 24 hours, four days before the White House sent Rice out to the Sunday talk shows to claim that it was a spontaneous demonstration run amok. The intelligence coming from Libya had been pointing that way for days. It’s less of a case of shooting first and aiming later than it is a case of flat-out lying about what happened and what the White House knew.
Speaking of chutzpah, Axelrod tried rewriting history in another part of the same interview:
White House officials are now insisting that President Barack Obama has always treated the Sept. 11 strike in Benghazi, Libya as a terrorist attack by jihadis.
“Well, first of all, Candy, as you know, the president called it an act of terror the day after it happened,” President Barack Obama’s chief campaign strategist David Axelrod told CNN’s Candy Crowley Sept. 30.
And Oceania has always been at war with Eastasia, Winston …. er, Candy.