Jay Bookman

Opinion columnist and blogger with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, specializing in foreign relations, environmental and technology-related issues

GOP-led report obliterates Fox News' version of Benghazi


Late Friday afternoon, the Republican-led House Intelligence Committee quietly released the results of its two-year investigation into the Benghazi tragedy. As the Associated Press reports it:

"WASHINGTON (AP) — A two-year investigation by the Republican-controlled House Intelligence Committee has found that the CIA and the military acted properly in responding to the 2012 attack on a U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, and asserted no wrongdoing by Obama administration appointees.

Debunking a series of persistent allegations hinting at dark conspiracies, the investigation of the politically charged incident determined that there was no intelligence failure, no delay in sending a CIA rescue team, no missed opportunity for a military rescue, and no evidence the CIA was covertly shipping arms from Libya to Syria.

In the immediate aftermath of the attack, intelligence about who carried it out and why was contradictory, the report found. That led Susan Rice, then U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, to inaccurately assert that the attack had evolved from a protest, when in fact there had been no protest. But it was intelligence analysts, not political appointees, who made the wrong call, the committee found. The report did not conclude that Rice or any other government official acted in bad faith or intentionally misled the American people."

That's pretty much a slam-dunk refutation of the entire Benghazi conspiracy theory so avidly argued by many conservatives, and again, it comes from the Republican-led House Intelligence Committee. Similar press accounts of the committee findings were filed by NPR, the Washington Post, The Hill, NBC, etc. The whole right-wing Benghazi narrative is exposed for what it always was, which is nonsense.

Its opening paragraph gives you a flavor:

"A leading Republican wants to expand the House investigation into the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attack by adding a Senate probe, as a new House Intelligence Committee report Friday concluded that the initial CIA assessment found no demonstrations prior to the assault and a primary purpose of the CIA operation in eastern Libya was to track the movement of weapons to Syria."

It's one of the more awesome examples of diversion and denial that I have ever seen. The Fox philosophy seems to be that they have lied so often to their viewers on this story that hey, what's one more, right? The alternate universe must not be compromised by reality no matter what.


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About the Author

Jay Bookman writes about government and politics, with an occasional foray into other aspects of life as time, space and opportunity allow.