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The Campaign Spot

Election-driven news and views . . . by Jim Geraghty.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s Culture of Complacency



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From the last Morning Jolt of the week:

Signs of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s Culture of Complacency

Of course:

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has not yet said whether Democrats will boycott or participate in the [House Special Committee to investigate the Benghazi attacks]. An initial request for an even-partisan split on the committee was rebuffed. Many leading Democrats have advocated for a boycott, but that would create a vacuum of Democratic response to the GOP-led investigation that is likely to call for testimony from Obama administration officials.

“We’re so sure there’s not a cover-up, and so committed to getting the truth, that we’re not going to participate!”

In Benghazi, we have the spectacle of Democrats insisting that by forming a special investigative committee, the Republicans are making a huge, self-destructive mistake that will end in their own embarrassment and humiliation . . . 

. . . and then doing everything possible to prevent the Republicans from doing that. They must be doing it out of brotherly love!

Gee, fellas, if there’s nothing more to learn about why Ambassador Stevens’ warnings were ignored, if there’s nothing more to learn about our response that night and whether more could have or should have been done, and if there’s nothing more to learn about why the administration spent the first days after the attack telling the public a false explanation . . . then there’s nothing for Democrats or the Obama administration to worry about right? They wouldn’t have any reason to withhold anything. In a year or so, when the special committee offers their final report, everyone will see it’s just the same old stuff, yawn, and scoff that this was a giant waste of time.

But Democrats seem to be doing everything possible to prevent that from happening. Almost as if they think a full investigation wouldn’t lead to that humiliation for the special committee.

Notice this from Jeryl Bier:

In 2012, even U.S. State Department diplomats in Nigeria seemed mystified about why the government was “reluctant” to issue the designation.

On September 20, 2012, then Bureau of African Affairs Assistant Secretary Johnnie Carson appeared on a State Department “Live at State” webchat regarding “U.S. Policy Toward Sub-Saharan Africa.” Questions from journalists and other individuals via webchat were posed to Carson by the host, Holly Jensen. At one point, a question was asked by the “U.S. Consulate in Lagos [Nigeria]“:

MS. JENSEN: The U.S. Consulate in Lagos wants to know: Why is the government reluctant to designate the Boko Haram sect as a foreign terrorist organization?

AMBASSADOR CARSON: Thank you very much. We look at the issue of Boko Haram as a major concern not only to Nigeria but also to Nigeria’s neighbors and Niger and Cameroon and Benin as well. Boko Haram, we believe, is not a homogenous, monolithic organization, but it is comprised of several different kinds of groups.

. . . In the September 2012 webchat, Carson seemed to suggest that the State Department did not even consider the “Boko Haram movement,” as he called it, to necessarily be a terror organization, but rather several groups simply “focused on trying to discredit the Nigerian Government”:

As I laid out on Campaign Spot yesterday, Boko Haram’s terror tactics were crystal clear by 2009; by 2012, it was ludicrously inaccurate to characterize them as “focused on trying to discredit the Nigerian government.”

With Benghazi and now in Nigeria, we have two examples of State Department people on the ground sending back warnings of gathering terrorist threats . . . and in both cases, the warnings were ignored.

Remember all the talk about New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s alleged culture of bullying within his administration? How about the signs of a culture of complacency in Hillary Clinton’s State Department?

How carefully did Hillary Clinton’s State Department
monitor terror groups overseas?


Tags: Hillary Clinton , State Department , Boko Haram , Benghazi


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