Fox Asks: Why Did Rice "Not Say ... We Are Doing An Investigation"?
Mara Liasson: "Susan Rice Was So Definitive" In Her Statements On Benghazi Attack. On Fox News' Special Report, contributor and NPR national political correspondent Mara Liasson claimed that Ambassador Susan Rice "was so definitive" about what had happened in Benghazi:
LIASSON: I think the most, kind of mystifying part of this is that Susan Rice was so definitive, and was so kind of out over the tips of her skis as they say, on the Sunday talk shows. Why not say then we are doing an investigation to find out what happened, instead of saying definitively this was a spontaneous protest that in some cases got hijacked? I mean that's caused more trouble for them than the attack itself I believe. [Fox News, Special Report with Bret Baier, 10/10/12]
Fox's Krauthammer: Everything Susan Rice Said "Was A Confection," An "Invention." On the October 10 edition of Fox News' Special Report, Fox contributor Charles Krauthammer claimed everything Rice had said in relation to the Libya attack "wasa confection" and an "invention."
KRAUTHAMMER: So everything that Susan Rice said was a confection, it was an invention. And as you showed, it was repeated again and again. You had Hillary Clinton speakingaboutthe video as the body of the ambassador was lying next to her. Then you had Susan Rice spinning the tails. You had the president of the United States addressing the General Assembly more than two weeks later talking about the video, the insult to Islam, et cetera. You have this entire story going all along.
They're trying to sell the video, they're trying to sell extremism and they're trying to sell all of this at thetime when they know it isn't true. So that's number one. Andthat's a scandal and I think it has to do with the fact that they were spiking the football over the death of bin Laden and al-Qaeda a week earlier in Charlotte and this was acontradiction of it. [Fox News, Special Report with Breit Baier, 10/10/12, via Fox Nation]
In Fact, Rice Repeatedly Stressed Ongoing Investigation
ABC's THIS WEEK
Rice: "There's An FBI Investigation That Has Begun ... That Will Tell Us With Certainty What Transpired." On the September 16 edition of ABC's This Week, Rice told guest host Jake Tapper that an FBI investigation was under way and relayed the administration's "current best assessment" based on information available at the time:
RICE: Well, Jake, first of all, it's important to know that there's an FBI investigation that has begun and will take some time to be completed. That will tell us with certainty what transpired.
But our current best assessment, based on the information that we have at present, is that, in fact, what this began as, it was a spontaneous -- not a premeditated -- response to what had transpired in Cairo. In Cairo, as you know, a few hours earlier, there was a violent protest that was undertaken in reaction to this very offensive video that was disseminated.
We believe that folks in Benghazi, a small number of people came to the embassy to -- or to the consulate, rather, to replicate the sort of challenge that was posed in Cairo. And then as that unfolded, it seems to have been hijacked, let us say, by some individual clusters of extremists who came with heavier weapons, weapons that as you know in -- in the wake of the revolution in Libya are -- are quite common and accessible. And it then evolved from there.
We'll wait to see exactly what the investigation finally confirms, but that's the best information we have at present. [ABC News, This Week with George Stephanopoulos, 9/16/12]...
...Rice's Statements Were In Line With State Department's Consistent Message
Under Secretary Patrick Kennedy: "Any Administration Official" Would Have Said What Ambassador Rice Said. The Atlantic Wire reported that Under Secretary of State for Management Patrick Kennedy defended Rice's September 16 comments, saying that "any administration official, including any career official" would "have said what Ambassador Rice said":
If any administration official, including any career official, were on television on Sunday, September 16th, they would have said what Ambassador Rice said. The information she had at that point from the intelligence community is the same that I had at that point. As time went on, additional information became available. Clearly, we know more today than we did on the Sunday after the attack. But as the process moves forward and more information becomes available, we will be sure to continue consulting with you. [The Atlantic Wire, 10/10/12]
State Dept. Spokesperson Victoria Nuland: Rice "Made Clear ... That There Is An Ongoing FBI Investigation." Commenting on Ambassador Rice's comments at a State Department press briefing, spokesperson Victoria Nuland noted that Rice was "very clear" about "what our initial assessment of what happened is" and that Rice "also made clear, as I had on Friday, that there is an ongoing FBI investigation." [State Department, 9/17/12]
Nuland: FBI And Libyan Government "Are Going To Have A Full Investigation" Into Whether Libya Attack Was Terror Act. Nuland explained in a separate interview that the FBI and Libyan government have launched an investigation to determine whether the consulate attack was terrorism:
Four Americans, including the US Ambassador to Libya, were killed during the attack on its Consulate in Benghazi.
Washington so far has said that the protest was a result of an anti-Islam video made in the US, while some US lawmakers have said that the attack has the hallmark of that of al-Qaeda.
"I don't think we know enough. We are going to continue to assess. She (Susan Rice, US Ambassador to the UN) gave our preliminary assessment. We are going to have a full investigation now, and then we will be in a better position to put labels on things," said State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland yesterday.
She said the FBI and the Libyan government, besides carrying out independent investigations, are also mutually "cooperating" over the case.
"The investigation is obviously going to lead us to the appropriate conclusions about precisely what happened and how it happened," Nuland said, pointing out that the US was "working well" with Libya in probing the attack. [Deccan Herald, 9/18/12]
AP: "The Obama Administration ... Is Investigating Whether The Assault On The U.S. Consulate In Libya Was A Planned Terrorist Strike." The Associated Press reported on September 13 that the FBI is investigating whether the attack was a terrorist attack or not:
The Obama administration, roiled by the first killing of a U.S. ambassador in more than 30 years, is investigating whether the assault on the U.S. Consulate in Libya was a planned terrorist strike to mark the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and not a spontaneous mob enraged over an anti-Islam YouTube video. [Associated Press, 9/13/12]
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