Monday, 6 May 2013

Benghazi: Democratic Party lawmakers slamming Obama administration

Benghazi: Democratic Party lawmakers slamming Obama administration, As the day for three Benghazi "whistleblowers" to testify before a congressional panel draws near, President Barack Obama's fellow Democrats on Capitol Hill slammed him with statements on Sunday's national news shows that were highly critical of the now famous Benghazi massacre talking points that were allegedly revised to mislead the American people.

While GOP lawmakers have been heaping one accusation on top of another since the terrorist attack on Sept.11, 2012, Obama's Democrats on Sunday suddenly distanced themselves from the Obama administration’s explanation of the Benghazi, Libya, attacks in the midst of more evidence being gathered by investigators in Congress and the news media, including Internet bloggers.

For example, it was discovered that the original CIA talking points memorandum contained words and phrases such as "Islamists, Islamic extremists, and al-Qaeda." But when Obama dispatched Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, to appear on Sunday news shows she blamed the the attacks on demonstrators angry over an obscure anti-Islamic video posted on the Internet.

According to Fox News Channel, several Democratic lawmakers appeared Sunday morning and made biting comments regarding Benghazi and the Obama administration:

“Well, it was scrubbed,” Massachusetts Democratic Rep. Steve Lynch told “Fox News Sunday.” “It was totally inaccurate. There's no excuse for that. It was false information. And what they try to do is harmonize what happened in Benghazi with what happened everywhere else across the Middle East.”

Lynch also acknowledged the talking points were likely revised to reflect President Obama’s claim – with his re-election bid in the balance -- that “Al Qaeda is on the run.”

Maryland Democratic Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, also acknowledged Sunday the facts as told by Rice were wrong.

“At the time, as it turns out” the information was incorrect, he said on CBS’ “Face the Nation”

Ruppersberger, who was briefed by the CIA about the attacks in immediate aftermath, asked agency officials what congressional leaders could tell the public, according to The Weekly Standard story.

On Sunday, he also said he welcomes a House Oversight and Government Affairs Committee hearing this week in which Greg Hicks, the deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Libya at the time of attacks, is expected to say Rice said the attacks didn’t appear to be “pre-meditated or pre-planned,” despite having information suggesting they were.

“That's what an investigation is about,” Ruppersberger told CBS. “Let's get the facts.”

Appearing on several TV news shows, Rep. Mike Kelly (R-Penn.) had blasted President Barack Obama and his administration, including the CIA director, for playing politics with the terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans, including U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens, dead.

Complaining about the lack of candor emanating from the Obama White House the State Department, the Defense Department and the CIA, Kelly said, "I am appalled by the dereliction of duty that’s taken place by this administration. We’ve got to get to the bottom of this and we’ve got to get it fixed.” Kelly, a first-term congressman, serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Rep. Kelly claims that in a May 3, 2012, email, the State Department denied a request by a group of Special Forces assigned to protect the U.S. embassy in Libya to continue their use of a DC- 3 airplane for security operations throughout the country. The subject line of the email, on which slain Ambassador Chris Stevens was copied, read: “Termination of Tripoli DC-3 Support.”

"Four days later, on May 7, the State Department authorized the U.S. embassy in Vienna to purchase a $108,000 electric vehicle charging station for the embassy motor pool’s new Chevrolet Volts. The purchase was a part of the State Department’s Energy Efficiency Sweep of Europe initiative, which included hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars on green program expenditures at various U.S. Embassies," Kelly stated.

While the embassy in Vienna was going green, the consulate in Benghazi was getting bombed, and little was done to stop it, according to Kelly. According to Rep. Issa, the Oversight Committee will expand the focus of the investigation of the attack -- that left four men dead, including Amb. Chris Stevens -- to include officials in the Obama White House, as well as the Hillary Clinton-led U.S. State Department.

Following the testimony of State Department staffers about the lack of diplomatic security at the Benghazi consulate, Issa sent President Obama an official letter demanding to know why the administration reduced U.S. security in Libya while the country was still emerging from a civil war. The State Department contracted a small security firm to provide untrained and ill-prepared guards recruited from the Libyan population.

Issa said a witness at the committee's hearing testified that the decision not to call back a 16-person security team over the embassy's objection was made as part of efforts to normalize relations with Libya, despite Democrats' denials.

"Americans … deserve a complete explanation about your administration's decision to accelerate a normalized presence in Libya at what now appears to be at the cost of endangering lives,” Issa wrote. “These critical foreign policy decisions are not made by low- or mid-level career officials — they are typically made through a structured and well-reasoned process that includes the National Security Council at the White House. The ultimate responsibility rests with you as the president of the United States.”

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