Photo: U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens, one of four Americans killed in the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on the American diplomatic mission at Benghazi
The House Oversight and Government Reform committee heard compelling testimony Wednesday of three career diplomats about what occurred before, during and after the Benghazi terror attacks. A heavily armed group of Islamic terrorists assassinated U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stephens and three other Americans Sept. 11, 2012.
“Today’s hearing offered officials at the State Department the opportunity to be heard,” chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) said in a statement. “These witnesses revealed new information that undermines the Obama administration’s assertion that there are no more questions left to answer about Benghazi. Numerous questions are still unanswered, despite months of dogged investigation by the Oversight Committee.”
Mark Thompson, acting deputy assistant secretary for counterterrorism at the State Department, Eric Nordstrom, diplomatic security officer and former regional security officer in Libya, and Gregory Hicks, a foreign service officer and former deputy chief of mission in Libya, were key witnesses in the hearing. The so-called “whistleblowers” provided detailed accounts which some say painted a picture of a series of events that go beyond incompetence.
Among other agendas, those testimonies sought to counter attempts to blame the assault on an obscure anti-Islam video on YouTube. The producer of the film still remains in prison.
“Trying to save face from an obvious terrorist attack could be the reason why the story was invented that the attack was a spontaneous uprising due to an anti-Islamic Internet video, said Dr. Bobby Eberle, a conservative political analyst. “The idea of politics being played with this situation and a blatant lie put forward to the American people is worthy of serious fallout within the Obama administration.”
Hicks delivered some of the most emotional and damaging testimony of the fatal attacks. The top deputy in Libya contends he knew immediately the assault on the U.S. consulate was a terrorist attack.
Hicks described receiving a telephone call from ambassador Stephens hearing “Greg, Greg, we’re under attack.” When Hicks heard that U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice describe the events as a “spontaneous protest,” he said, “My jaw dropped” and “I was embarrassed."
Media Coverage Score Card
In a new op-ed for Fox News.com, the Media Research Center’s Dan Gainor exposes the mainstream media for helping the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton “lie, stonewall, bully, and intimidate their way out of the Benghazi scandal.”
Gainor contends from the Washington Post insulting administration critics as “Chick-fil-A lovers” to NBC dismissing the scandal due to its “obvious political undercurrent” to the Associated Press derisively calling the hearings “GOP hearings” to Politico attacking CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson for doing real reporting, the media have formed a perimeter around Obama and Clinton.
“In the real world, when you cover up four murders after the fact, you likely go to jail,” writes Gainor. “In government, you retire with dignity and run for president with full media support.
"Up until yesterday, that was the Benghazi scenario following the death of four Americans including our ambassador to Libya.”
According to the Media Research Center, Wednesday’s Benghazi hearings yielded many more questions that the media must demand answers to. In a statement (included below), MRC president Brent Bozell is calling on the media to “investigate these revelations morning, noon, and night until the truth is known. If the media are having trouble finding the motivation to do their jobs, they should pretend Obama is a Republican.”
During the House Oversight and Government Reform committee hearings, MSNBC broadcast 0 minutes, CNN 17 minutes and the Fox News Channel 108 minutes.
White House Cover-Up?
The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which focuses on constitutional law, said Wednesday it has heard from nearly 70,000 Americans who are demanding the truth from the Obama administration about the terrorist attack. The ACLJ notified the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee about the petition response and will continue to add names in support of congressional action in its investigation of the Benghazi attacks.
“The Obama administration has been stonewalling and withholding information about this attack from the very start,” said Jay Sekulow, chief counsel of the ACLJ. “We are now learning important new information from people who were on the ground on Sept. 11, 2012. There are many critical questions facing the Obama administration – including former Secretary of State Clinton. Why did the State Department strip the Benghazi facility of security even as threats escalated? Did the administration order rescuing forces to ‘stand down’ – leading to the deaths of brave Americans fighting for their lives, outgunned in a hostile land? Did the administration lie to cover up its failures and downplay the terrorist threat in the middle of an election season? The American people deserve answers. The American people deserve the truth. It's our hope that the hearing in the House tomorrow begins to uncover the real facts behind what happened in Benghazi – what our government knew and when.”
Some believe Republicans are simply searching for proof of a cover-up that sought to protect President Barack Obama’s reelection and stunt Hillary Clinton's 2016 bid for the White House, Democrats maintain the GOP is pursuing nothing more than a political witch-hunt.
"The unsubstantiated Republican allegations about Benghazi disintegrated one by one," said Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the House committee's top Democrat. "There's no evidence of a conspiracy to withhold military assets for political reasons, no evidence of a cover-up."
A constitutional attorney believes, however, the Americans murdered were abandoned by the very government they so bravely served.
“The U.S. government knew from the beginning of the assault that this was a coordinated terrorist attack yet tried to hide this fact from the public for days,” said Michael Connelly, executive director of the U.S. Justice Foundation. “It is time for us to take back our country and hold the enemies of our Constitution accountable for their actions.”
Russ Jones is a 25-year award-winning journalist and correspondent. He is co-publisher of various Christian news sites such as ChristianPress.com, OxfordFamily.com and a media consultant to a number of political and cause-oriented campaigns. He is also a freelance correspondent for the American Family Radio Network, a regular contributor for ReligionToday.com, Crosswalk.com and various Christian TV networks. He has been a guest on such programs as the Mike Gallagher Show, the Dennis Prager Show and Sandy Rios in the Morning. Jones holds degrees from the University of Missouri-Columbia and St. Paul School of Theology. Russ is married to Jackie and together they have four children. He may be reached at [email protected] or Facebook.com/russjones.
Publication date: May 10, 2013