Yesterday we reported on the revelation that the White House made a conscious decision to blame the sacking of our Benghazi consulate on a silly and sparsely distributed internet video called Innocence of Muslims. In an email distributed by Ben Rhodes, senior policy makers, among them Susan Rice, are told to 1) blame the internet video for the violence, 2) deflect attention from greater policy failures (one presumes he’s talking about everything the Obama regime had touched), and 3) emphasize Obama’s cool and collected leadership.
[It was noted in the post yesterday that Ben Rhodes is the brother of CBS News David Rhodes and this might explain some of the difficulty former CBS reporter Sharly Atkisson had in getting Benghazi stories aired on CBS.]
Now that we know that the White House was actively involved in pushing a blatant lie about the genesis of the Benghazi attack in order to deflect blame it is only fair to ask who came up with the story to begin with.
What we know
A two minute clip of the Innocence of Muslims video was shown on Egyptian television on September 9.
On September 11, an Egyptian mob (actual or astroturf, no one knows because astroturf mobs were the norm in Egypt under the Muslim Brotherhood) demonstrated outside, and on, the US Embassy in Cairo.
From a timeline produced by Factcheck.org, we know that there were no demonstrations in Benghazi on September 11, the day of the attack.
2:30 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (8:30 p.m. Benghazi time): U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens steps outside the consulate to say goodbye to a Turkish diplomat. There are no protesters at this time. (“Everything is calm at 8:30,” a State Department official would later say at an Oct. 9 background briefing for reporters. “There’s nothing unusual. There has been nothing unusual during the day at all outside.”)
The attack began at around 4pm, EDT, by 8:30pm our ambassador was dead, at 10pm Hillary Clinton issued this statement:
I condemn in the strongest terms the attack on our mission in Benghazi today. As we work to secure our personnel and facilities, we have confirmed that one of our State Department officers was killed. We are heartbroken by this terrible loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and those who have suffered in this attack.
This evening, I called Libyan President Magariaf to coordinate additional support to protect Americans in …read more