Hillary Clinton’s email dump won’t stop Benghazi questions

23 May 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Clinton emails shed light on media diet.

Beyond shedding new light on Hillary Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State, the hundreds of pages of emails released by the State Dept. on Friday provide a glimpse into the presidential hopeful’s media diet — as well as her staff’s attitudes about certain media outlets. This comes on the same day as Clinton made a campaign stop in New Hampshire. “Well first of all I’m glad that the emails are starting to come out,” Clinton said. “This is something that I’ve asked to be done as you know for a long time.” Clinton would have liked to have kept the focus on craft beer, handshakes, and her bid to win over small business. The 296 emails depict senior Clinton aides and loyalists swapping news articles, passing along morsels of intelligence, crafting strategy and occasionally kissing up to power. The source of the email and transcript, State Department Communications Director Caroline Alder, commented, “This will be exciting when it’s FOIA’d…but will give you a sense of the interaction.” Langley is invited to sit on the couch with Clinton at “an appropriate distance.” However, Clinton offers her a chair to bring her “within inches of the Secretary — leaning in even further.” The reporter agrees and midway through the interview, she “grabs HRC’s knee” and Clinton began laughing “awkwardly” as she looked over at State Department Clinton senior advisor Philippe Reines.

On one Friday morning in October 2012, she sent an email to her Chief of Staff Cheryl Mills, saying, “I just heard an NPR report about the CIA station chief in Tripoli sending a cable on 9/12 saying there was no demo etc. The emails did not, however, contain new revelations about the deaths of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans or the degree to which the State Department was prepared for the attack.

She answered questions about the emails after what her campaign called a round-table discussion with representatives of New Hampshire small businesses, surrounded by kegs and cases of beer at the Smuttynose Brewing Company warehouse in Hampton. I feel okay about it.” The Times story was later corrected, with a note saying that the original article incorrectly paraphrased remarks from Benghazi residents and changed the headline. And there are political moments, with glimpses of top officials’ concerns about how the attack on the Libyan compound would affect the 2012 elections. Then-State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland described one Wall Street Journal article about a succession of security lapses and misjudgments in Benghazi as a “hit piece.” “This is a real hit piece – they intentionally twisted and misused info shared to help them understand how we work, while using Libyan sourcing as gospel. While there doesn’t seem to be the kind of “smoking gun” that many Republicans imagined, the exchanges provide plenty of one-liners that will surely be used against Clinton when she testifies before a House panel later this year.

After John McCain went on Greta Van Susteren in December 2012 and said Clinton never backs “down from a fight” and that she is “not physically well enough to testify,” Hillary suggested to aide Huma Abedin that “someone should call Greta VS to thank her for “knowing the truth.” After then U.N. But she was her usual wacky self and pulled one move that I can’t even describe so I’ll let Caroline do – since you’ll appreciate it given your familiarity with Monica Langley, Hillary Clinton, and the Secretary’s chair arrangement in her outer office,” Reines said before Adler sent the transcript. “Tom, she moved that yellow chair as close as it went. Ambassador Susan Rice was interviewed on ABC”s “This Week” by Jake Tapper, Sullivan emailed to Clinton that the only troubling sentence from Rice was that the investigation would show whether “what transpired in Benghazi might have unfolded differently in different circumstances.” But Sullivan said Rice was “pushed there.” Staff members often forwarded Clinton articles both positive and negative, and Clinton would sometimes instruct them to “pls print.” We don’t know whether printing meant that the articles were important and meant to be saved, or whether she simply wanted to read them later. Mills also seemed surprised. “Have not seen – will see if we can get,” she responded 28 minutes later. “Americans can now see for themselves that there is no evidence to support the conspiracy theories advanced about the Benghazi attacks,” said Rep.

Elsewhere in the trove is an exchange between Clinton aide Phillippe Reines and the late journalist Michael Hastings, in which the two made amends after their infamous tete-a-tete. Was like the dental hygienist rolling around the floor to get the best access to your mouth depending on what tooth she was trying to get access to I’ve never seen a Westerner invade her space like that And even the non Westerners I’ve seen do it based on cultural differences have been only briefly to greet, This went on like that for 51 minutes – unacceptable in any culture. The Republicans created the 12-member committee in May 2014, contending they needed to delve more deeply into the attacks, which took place 11 months after the toppling of Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi.

Democrats and others, however, accused the Republicans of using the panel to keep the heat on Clinton as she campaigns for president, pointing out that seven other congressional inquiries found no negligence or incompetence on the part of senior administration officials. “I want people to be able to see all of them,” she said. “It is the fact that we have released all of them that have any government relationship whatsoever. The batch of emails also contains numerous memos from Sidney Blumenthal — a former White House adviser to Bill Clinton — who served as a de facto intelligence source for Hillary Clinton.

The emails show that Clinton was briefed in the months before the deadly attack of ongoing tumult in Libya, including a helicopter shoot-down and a July attack on Benghazi’s election headquarters, in which ballot boxes were burned. But there were no emails released suggesting that concerns about security at the Benghazi facility had reached Clinton before the Sept. 11, 2012, attacks.

In one email, dated March 9, 2012, to Sullivan, Clinton wrote that Blumenthal’s analysis “strains credulity.” Blumenthal had emailed about attempts to establish a “semi-autonomous zone” in Cyrenaica, the historic name for Libya’s eastern region, which contains Benghazi. John McCain, R-Ariz., “was applauded and thanked for his support wherever we went.” At 11:38 p.m. on the night of the 2012 attacks, Clinton wrote her top advisers that Stevens’ death had been “confirmed by the Libyans,” leading her to ask, “Should we announce tonight or wait until morning?” “We need to (check) family’s druthers,” then-State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland responded, six minutes later. “If they are OK, we should put out something from you tonight.” Five days later, U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice’s appearance on Sunday television talk shows ignited the controversy because she said – relying on talking points originating with the CIA – that the attacks grew out of a spontaneous protest outside the U.S. diplomatic facility over an anti-Islamic video posted on the Internet. Here are concerns from a Sept. 14, 2011, email forwarded to Clinton written by Elizabeth Dibble, the then-principal deputy assistant secretary in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs. “State of Embassy Tripoli facility:…..the facility is not salvageable – the condition is “shocking and photos don’t do it justice.” Floor have collapsed, the ballistic glass and metal support beams have melted, and it has been totally trashed.” On June 10, 2011, the U.S. team in Benghazi was staying in a hotel that received “a credible threat” against it. One email involved Rice’s interview on ABC’s “This Week.” Within 90 minutes of her appearance, Clinton adviser Jacob Sullivan sent Clinton an email that made clear the former secretary and her staff were watching where the fingers of blame might point next.

A top CIA official showered praise on Clinton for “working so incredibly hard to make such a difficult ceremony so dignified for everyone involved,” while Wendy Sherman, then undersecretary of state for political affairs and now the department’s No. 2, took time to write Clinton “to tell you that speech yesterday was terrific.” In other cases, redactions render the messages meaningless. It’s clear from the emails that Clinton — the top U.S. diplomat at the time — was concerned in the weeks that followed about her comments on the attacks’ cause.

The ever-loyal Sullivan assured her on Sept. 30, 2012, that she had not attributed the attack to demonstrators. “Attached is full compilation,” he wrote to her, attaching copies of all her public statements in the immediate aftermath. “You never said spontaneous or characterized the motives, in fact you were careful in your first statement to say we were assessing motive and method. A Nov. 26, 2012, email included in the release detailed Clinton’s day from 7:30 a.m. (a phone call with an Egyptian foreign minister) to her arrival back at her Washington D.C. home at 6:10 p.m. Highlights of that day include a White House meeting in the Situation Room with Assistant Secretary Patrick Kennedy, a 5-minute “drop by” for press handler Philippe Reines’ birthday and two quick photo ops.

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