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Feinstein: Petraeus Said Benghazi Was a Terrorist Attack, So Stop Attacking Susan Rice


If that sounds like a non sequitur, you’d be right. But that’s precisely what Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein told David Gregory earlier today on NBC’s Meet the Press. Asked whether Director Petraeus’s testimony on the Benghazi attack has remained consistent – he has now testified twice – Feinstein said: 

We have a transcript of that meeting on that day and Petraeus very clearly said that it was a terrorist attack and outlined who he thought might be involved in it…that’s the day after the attack, I think there’s no question about it. What has concerned me about this is really the politicization of a public statement that was put out by the entire intelligence committee [sic], which Susan Rice, on the 16th, was asked to go before the people and use that statement, did. I have read every one of the five statements she did that day. She was within the context of that statement, and for this, she has been pilloried for two months. I don’t understand it, it has to stop. If it continues, it’s going to set up, once again, a partisan divide in the House and the Senate, which Congressman Rogers and I have tried to overcome with some success with respect to the intelligence committee. 

So, if Petraeus said it was terrorism, everybody should stop attacking Susan Rice for saying it was the video? As Senator Feinstein might say, “I don’t understand it, it has to stop.”

The senator’s questionable logic notwithstanding, her statement about Petraeus’s initial testimony contradicts Fox News’ September 27th report, which noted that, according to a congressional source: 

…CIA Director David Petraeus, during a briefing with members of the House Intelligence Committee three days after the attack, also espoused the view that Benghazi was an out-of-control demonstration prompted by the YouTube video. According to the source, this was “shocking” to some members who were present and saw the same intelligence pointing toward a terrorist attack. 


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