Try as they might to make Benghazi yesterday's news, Obama administration officials can't make it go away.
Their spin is that only conservative pundits care about what happened in Libya last September. Truth is, a lot of people care. All Americans should care that Barack Obama failed to protect diplomats and that his appointees tried to cover up what actually happened.
Spin devolved into lies. A president in the midst of an election campaign put politics ahead of national security, his underlings deftly shifting the blame from Islamic extremists to a YouTube video.
Congressional hearings are now focused on Benghazi. In advance of those, The Weekly Standard's Steven Hayes broke a story detailing the shift in White House talking points on how to explain the Libyan debacle. He said the White House had intelligence reports “very, very early” after the Sept. 11, 2012 incident that al-Qaida-connected Islamic extremists had attacked a diplomatic outpost, leaving four dead.
Top officials had real intelligence on what had happened in Benghazi. They had it less than 36 hours after the attack, Hayes said, and days before the administration “scrubbed” talking points presented to policymakers by the CIA.
Early versions of the talking points “prominently noted that extremists with ties to al-Qaida” were involved. The “scrubbed” version left this out. U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice hit the Sunday talk show circuit to push the video blame game. In congressional hearings last week, Greg Hicks, the deputy chief of missions in Libya, said that when he heard the story Rice was peddling, “I was stunned. My jaw dropped, and I was embarrassed.”
Hillary Clinton may have blown her chances of succeeding Barack Obama with her unforgettable, hostile question of what difference does it make now how the story was told.
The White House explanation for Benghazi was a shell game. People died. The administration lied.