The conclusion of the two-year GOP report on Benghazi illustrates how politically motivated delays got Americans killed. Newly released State Department
emails have poked holes in the private server explanation. And a former Secret Service agent says she’s a liar with anger issues. It’s not Clinton’s week.
“I understand that after two years and $7 million spent by the Benghazi Committee out of taxpayer funds, it had to today report it had found nothing, nothing to contradict the conclusions of the Independent Accountability Board or the conclusions of the prior, multiple earlier investigations carried out on a bipartisan basis in the Congress,” Clinton said of the newly released Benghazi report.
“I’ll leave it to others to characterize this report, but I think it’s pretty clear it’s time to move on,” she added.
Well, let’s characterize it briefly.
While the Obama administration claimed the Benghazi attack was an impromptu action sparked by anger over a YouTube video, we now know that it was a planned operation against the U.S. compound.
The administration also claimed that they did everything they could to respond to the attack in a timely manner. But the GOP report found evidence that the State Department
actually wasted hours holding uniformed military to protect the U.S. lives because it was worried about upsetting Libya.
From the report:
What has … emerged is a picture of the State Department eating up valuable time by insisting that certain elements of the U.S. military respond to Libya in civilian clothes and that it not use vehicles with United States markings. Both restrictions appear to have been concessions to the Libyan government that did not want an identifiable U.S. military presence on the streets of Libya. We will never know exactly how long these conditions delayed the military response but that they were even a part of the discussion is troubling.
And at the same time the State Department appeared to waste time on what our soldiers would wear, it also appeared to waste time and focus on the YouTube video that the administration would later blame, falsely, for the attack. It has emerged that during an emergency call at 7:30 p.m. on the night of the attack involving Secretary Clinton and other high-level officials from the Department of Defense, State Department, and CIA that a full five of the eleven action items from the meeting related to the video.
Sure, the report didn’t find any clear “wrongdoing” on Clinton’s part. But it also illustrates that she didn’t do a hell of a lot right either, which should raise serious concerns about her ability to respond to a crisis if elected commander-in-chief.
As for the new batch of State Department Emails
, they pretty much show that Clinton’s clear intent in having a secret server was avoiding government scrutiny for certain actions while at State.
First of all, the new emails were only released thanks to a court order because of a conservative legal advocacy group’s successful petition to have them made public.
As the AP noted: “The emails were not among the 55,000 pages of work-related messages that Clinton turned over to the agency in response to public records lawsuits seeking copies of her official correspondence.”
These emails were among the thousands she deemed “personal” in nature. You know, the ones about yoga routines and dinner with Bill.
Among those deeply personal exchanges was this remark she made to top aide Huma Abedin: “I have just realized I have no idea how my papers are treated at State. Who manages both my personal and official files? … I think we need to get on this asap to be sure we know and design the system we want.”
Sounds less like a matter of convenience than it does an attempt to make sure any damning evidence of a conflict of interest while at State never made it into public records.
Former Secret Service officer Gary Byrne, author of the new book “Crisis of Character,” meanwhile, is making the rounds talking about the Clinton he knew when he had the misfortune of working for her in the White House.
During an interview with Fox, he said Clinton is a volatile person who isn’t a fan of compromise.
“She gets angry at things that are policy issues that, you know, take time to fix, and she’s got this attitude where she wants things fixed right now, immediately. She screams and yells at people,” he said.
From what he observed, Byrne contends that the thought of Clinton running the country is terrifying.
“I feel so strongly that people need to know the real Hillary Clinton and how dangerous she is in her behavior. She is not a leader. She is not a leader,” he said.
He also characterized Clinton as dishonest, saying, “She habitually lies.”
None of this looks very good for Clinton—but, then again, it’s probably just the work of that vast right-wing conspiracy.