Benghazi Made Simple
The White House’s political and ideological instincts overpowered everything else.

Jay Carney


Jonah Goldberg

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is Jonah Goldberg’s weekly “news”letter, the G-File. Subscribe here to get the G-File delivered to your inbox on Fridays.

Deer Reader,

On Wednesday, Jay Carney explained — as if he was talking to a room full of children — that the Benghazi e-mail the White House refused to release until the White House was forced to release its Benghazi e-mails wasn’t in fact about Benghazi, even though the e-mail talks about Benghazi. This is Monty Pythonesque of “Dead Parrot” proportions. That’s not a Benghazi e-mail, it’s just an e-mail about Benghazi, in a folder marked “Benghazi” e-mails, idiot.

As I said on Fox yesterday, Jay Carney is a very strange creature for Washington. He’s an extremely confident liar — we’ve got a lot of those! — but he’s not very convincing. Usually, confidence = convincing. As George Costanza (and in his own way Bill Clinton) liked to say, it’s not a lie if you believe it when you tell it. But with Carney, he lies in a way that makes it seem not so much like he believes it but that you’re an idiot for not believing it. There’s a kind of the-joke’s-on-you feel to the way he talks that reminds me of that (X-rated and not safe for work) Onion article, “Why Do These Homosexuals Keep [Fellating Me]?”

Carney actually seems shocked and, well, disappointed to the point of contemptuousness, when reporters won’t believe him. It’s like no one told him he doesn’t have Jedi mind tricks at his disposal.

Carney: These are not the droids you’re looking for, idiots.

Ed Henry, Fox News: But Jay, these look exactly like the droids we’ve been looking for. In fact, the serial numbers match.

Carney: Ed, I understand your network is deeply invested in finding a story here. But the simple fact is that these are in no way the droids you’re looking for. Move along.

Henry: One last follow-up, Jay. The golden droid on the right just said, “Excuse me sirs, but we are in fact exactly the droids you’ve been looking for. Thank goodness you found us.”

Carney: No, no they didn’t. And besides — I used to be a journalist as you know — and it’s common knowledge among real journalists [Carney winks to the non-Fox reporters in the room] that one should never believe what droids tell them.

Jonathan Karl, ABC: Jay, related question: Here is a photo of you from last month holding up a picture of these exact droids with the quote in the caption reading, ‘Carney vows the White House will not rest until these droids are found.’ Also, ABC News has obtained footage of you from this morning, hugging the two droids right there, with you saying ‘Thank Obama we found you!’ Can you explain that?

[Carney rolls his eyes and then desperately tries to telekinetically choke everyone in the room.]

Henry: Uh, Jay are you okay? Why are you squinting? What’s up with that hand gesture . . .

Benghazi Made Simple

There is an enormous amount of theorizing about what the “real story” behind Benghazi really is. To me it’s always been obvious. The White House was caught off guard — for reasons stemming both from ideology and incompetence — on September 11, 2012. As they have after virtually every other (jihadist) terrorist attack on Americans, they acted as if it had absolutely nothing to do with them. As with the Times Square bomber, the Fort Hood shooter, and other Islamist assaults, there’s always some other reason for the bloodshed, some attempt to claim, at least for a while, that this was an “isolated incident” with no broader implications for the War on Terror or Obama’s foreign policy. Admittedly, even this White House understood that spinning the Benghazi attack as an isolated incident wasn’t going to work (such intense spinning could risk irreparable scrotal torsion). So they went with the story about the video.



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