- Elton John blasts Russia’s anti-gay laws during Moscow concert
- U.N.: Afghanistan slow to enforce law protecting women
- Heart cancels SeaWorld concert after ‘Blackfish’ documentary
- South Carolina sheriff refuses to lower American flag for Nelson Mandela
- South Africans hold day of prayer for Nelson Mandela
- Mandela not on life support in final hours, friend says
- Ukraine protesters topple, decapitate Lenin statue in Kiev
- Kim Jong-un’s uncle removed from North Korean state documentary
- Thailand crisis deepens as opposition quits Parliament
- Campbell Soup apologizes for SpaghettiOs’ Pearl Harbor tweet
Dramatic and damaging details on Benghazi attack expected during congressional showdown
The top American diplomat in Libya is set to offer politically damaging testimony this week that suggests the Obama administration fumbled its response to the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. diplomatic post in Benghazi that killed Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and three other Americans.
Gregory N. Hicks is expected to testify before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that he thought it was a terrorist attack from the start, and not a spontaneous reaction to protests out of Egypt resulting from an anti-Islam video on the Internet — a version that U.N. Ambassador Susan E. Rice put forward on Sunday talk shows in the wake of the attack.
The political firestorm surrounding the incident, and whether it could have been prevented, has resurfaced after it ebbed for some months amid debate over gun control and spending priorities on Capitol Hill.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz, Utah Republican, promised startling testimony from “whistleblowers” like Mr. Hicks and former Marine Mark I. Thompson, the State Department’s acting deputy assistant secretary for counterterrorism.
Mr. Issa said the initial assessment may be the result of “a mentality where you had to pretend like things were safe, the war on terror was over, and that may have gone in a great way to getting people to say, ‘Well, we can’t call this a terrorist attack because then the war on terror is back alive.’”
Rep. Stephen F. Lynch, Massachusetts Democrat, said House Republicans are the ones who have been less than transparent, but he acknowledged that the White House made mistakes with the “talking points.”
“It was false. … There’s no excuse for that,” Mr. Lynch said when asked on Fox about a Weekly Standard report that concluded the administration “engaged in a wholesale rewriting of intelligence assessments about Benghazi in order to mislead the public.”
But Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger, Maryland Democrat, said it is important not to rush to judgment while Congress gets to the bottom of what happened in Benghazi.
“This should not be a partisan issue at all,” he told “Face the Nation.” “This should be to get the facts and open the issue and to hear from everybody. And when you hear allegations that people are told not to talk, I would hope that those issues would come out. And if that’s the case, then we should be held accountable.”
If they had, he said, then Ms. Rice could have provided a more accurate picture of what happened in the immediate aftermath of the attack.
Her initial assessment was panned so loudly by Republican lawmakers in November, that President Obama demanded that his congressional critics “go after me” instead of his top aides.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Tom Howell Jr. covers politics for The Washington Times. He can be reached at email@example.com.
- Obama admin.: One in 10 Obamacare forms might have errors
- Obama administration knew of key Obamacare delay in August, emails say
- House Speaker John Boehner: It took me 3 to 4 hours to sign up for Obamacare
- Young millennials shun Obamacare, creating risky imbalance
- Almost 1.5 million deemed eligible for Medicaid in October alone: Obama administration
Latest Blog Entries
- Calif.: Give 'gift of health' by pledging cash for the uninsured
- Tensions hit boiling point over Obamacare enrollment figures, error rates
- Young, uninsured adults vital to Obamacare are not keen on enrolling: New Harvard poll
- Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox will promote Obamacare at Mall of America
- HealthCare.gov employs a new look once again
By Brahma Chellaney
Beijing's creeping aggression signals a challenge to U.S. presence in the Asian Pacific
- CURL: Obama tells a whopper on IRS scandal
- CHELLANEY: China's game of chicken
- Sen. Rand Paul pushes 'economic freedom zones' for Detroit
- Obamas call to close Vatican embassy is 'slap in the face' to Roman Catholics
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
- Russian lawmaker wants to outlaw U.S. dollar, calls it a Ponzi scheme
- 'Dude, I'm dreading that I will have to go': Czech prime minister on Mandela funeral
- New Internet security challenge arises for cybercops
- Wife of Obama aide found dead in burning car in home's garage
- Congress creates a legislative fortress for military sex-assault policy
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Al Maurer provides a common sense, conservatarian, Constitutional conservative perspective from the battleground state of Colorado
Film Reviews and Articles by Kevin Williams
"Critical thinking is thinking about your thinking while you're thinking in order to make your thinking better." - Dr. Richard Paul
Go beyond tourism's "top 10" bus tour destinations with Susan McKee as she explores the varied history, culture, food, and gardens, of the world.
Let it snow
White House pets gone wild!