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  • craigsswanndo craigsswanndo May 13, 2013 6:01 PM Flag

    O/T- Will the Benghazi Charade Lead to Impeachment

    Hope so,, Ya suppose there is a little squirming going on,, I be he can't get an ice pick up his but,,
    What about that dog and pony show at the caskets of those murdered,, I bet those mothers and fathers would love to slap the pi*s*s out of both he and HC,,

    Sentiment: Hold

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    • we can only pray that it does.....


      State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland has quite the Republican party pedigree.

      May 13, 2013  |  Salon / By Alex Seitz-Wald
      After ABC News  released emails detailing the evolution of the Obama administration’s talking points on the Benghazi terror attack,  much of the right’s ire has focused on Victoria Nuland, the State Department spokesperson who asked for the removal of references to al-Qaida and the CIA’s warnings about the dangers to U.S. diplomats in Libya.

      With her name splashed all over the emails and her very public role in Hillary Clinton’s State Department, Nuland serves the useful dual role of scapegoat and proxy for the potential 2016 presidential candidate, who may be the real target of conservative uproar over Benghazi. Naturally, critics ascribe political motives to Nuland’s actions in the Benghazi aftermath. “It’s very clear today that  lib Victoria Nuland was not honest with reporters,” conservative blogger Jim Hoft wrote.

      But Nuland may prove to be a poor choice of left-wing villain for the right considering that her record suggests she’s anything but a Saul Alinskyite. In fact, she came under attack  from the left when Clinton chose her as spokesperson because she had previously served as  a senior adviser to #$%$ Cheney. Yes, that #$%$ Cheney, leading antiwar blogger Marcy Wheeler to call her a “ former Cheney hack.”

      Meanwhile, Nuland is married to Washington Post columnist and neoconservative historian Robert Kagan, who helped sell the case for the Iraq War, advised both Mitt Romney and John McCain’s presidential campaigns, and  co-founded the Project for a New American Century think tank with Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol. Obama has  spoken fondly of some of Kagan’s work as well, but his credentials in the conservative foreign policy establishment are unimpeachable.

      This is not to say that Nuland is some kind of neoconservative plant as  some liberals have claimed. Nuland has a distinguished career in the Foreign Service going back  almost 30 years, holding senior positions under presidents of both parties. If she has any political views, she’s kept them to herself,  refraining from making any donations to political campaigns or speaking publicly about domestic elections.

      In an interview with the Brown Alumni Magazine, Nuland  compared the Foreign Service to the military, suggesting she views the role apolitically. And while she praised Clinton, she said she expected to leave the job after John Kerry took over. “Like all good foreign service officers,” she said, “I go back in the pool, and see what they might want me to do.”

      Nuland may, however, be a closet hipster, with  an affinity for Fleet Foxes and Bon Iver.

      Sentiment: Strong Buy

      • 1 Reply to elk_1l
      • Brooks, in his defense of a friend highly involved in the Benghazi events, does at one point near the end of his article very briefly refer to what really was going on within this saga:


        Published: May 13, 2013, The New York Times

        Twenty years ago, when she was a young Foreign Service officer in Moscow, Victoria Nuland gave me a dazzling briefing on the diverse factions inside the Russian parliament. Now she is a friend I typically see a couple times a year, at various functions, and I have watched her rise, working with everybody from #$%$ Cheney to Hillary Clinton, serving as ambassador to NATO, and now as a spokeswoman at the State Department.

        Over the past few weeks, the spotlight has turned on Nuland. The charge is that intelligence officers prepared accurate talking points after the attack in Benghazi, Libya, and that Nuland, serving her political masters, watered them down.

        The charges come from two quarters, from Republicans critical of the Obama administration’s handling of Benghazi and intelligence officials shifting blame for Benghazi onto the State Department.

        It’s always odd watching someone you know get turned into a political cartoon on the cable talk shows. But this case is particularly disturbing because Nuland did nothing wrong.

        Let’s review the actual events. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens was killed on Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012. For this there is plenty of blame to go around. We now know, thanks to reporting by Eric Schmitt, Helene Cooper and Michael Schmidt in The Times, that Benghazi was primarily a C.I.A. operation. Furthermore, intelligence officers underestimated how dangerous the situation was. They erred in vetting the Libyan militia that was supposed to provide security.

        The next day, Nuland held a background press briefing, a transcript of which is available on the State Department’s Web site. She had two main points. There’s a lot we don’t know. The attack was conducted by Libyan extremists. She made no claim that it was set off by an anti-Muslim video or arose spontaneously from demonstrations.

        On Friday, Sept. 14, David Petraeus, then the director of the C.I.A., gave a classified briefing to lawmakers in Congress. The lawmakers asked him to provide talking points so they could discuss the event in the news media.

        C.I.A. analysts began work on the talking points. Early drafts, available on Jonathan Karl’s ABC News Web site, reflect the confused and fragmented state of knowledge. The first draft, like every subsequent one, said the Benghazi attacks were spontaneously inspired by protests in Cairo. It also said that extremists with ties to Al Qaeda participated.

        The C.I.A. analysts quickly scrubbed references to Al Qaeda from the key part of the draft, investigators on Capitol Hill now tell me.

        On Friday evening of Sept. 14, the updated talking points were e-mailed to the relevant officials in various departments, including Nuland. She wondered why the C.I.A. was giving members of Congress talking points that were far more assertive than anything she could say or defend herself. She also noted that the talking points left the impression that the C.I.A. had issued all sorts of warnings before the attack.

        Remember, this was at a moment when the State Department was taking heat for what was mostly a C.I.A. operation, while doing verbal gymnastics to hide the C.I.A.’s role. Intentionally or not, the C.I.A. seemed to be repaying the favor by trying to shift blame to the State Department for ignoring intelligence.

        Nuland didn’t seek to rewrite the talking points. In fact, if you look at the drafts that were written while she was sending e-mails, the drafts don’t change much from one to the next. She was just kicking the process up to the policy-maker level.

        At this point, Nuland’s participation in the whole affair ends.

        On Saturday morning, what’s called a deputies committee meeting was held at the White House. I’m told the talking points barely came up at that meeting. Instead, the C.I.A. representative said he would take proactive measures to streamline them. That day, the agency reduced the talking points to the bare nub Susan Rice, the American ambassador to the United Nations, was given before going on the Sunday talk shows.

        Several things were apparently happening. Each of the different players had their hands on a different piece of the elephant. If there was any piece of the talking points that everybody couldn’t agree upon, it got cut. Second, the administration proceeded with extreme caution about drawing conclusions, possibly overlearning the lessons from the Bush years. Third, as the memos moved up the C.I.A. management chain, the higher officials made them more tepid (this is apparently typical). Finally, in the absence of a clear narrative, the talking points gravitated toward the least politically problematic story, blaming the anti-Muslim video and the Cairo demonstrations.

        Is this a tale of hard intelligence being distorted for political advantage? Maybe. Did Victoria Nuland scrub the talking points to serve Clinton or President Obama? That charge is completely unsupported by the evidence. She was caught in


        and she defended her department. The accusations against her are bogus.

        Sentiment: Strong Buy

    • Doc, I'm fine with saying that from what Ive seen so far there is no impeachable offense and I don't see anything on the horizon that would lead there. Still, this whole matter needs to be completly investigated.

      That said, this administration is distinguishing themselves in ways that are quite unique and I doubt history will be kind.