Whoopi Goldberg got a little excited on Thursday’s The View when she applauded Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by calling her a "bitch," citing her performance before the Senate foreign affairs committee. Goldberg introduced a clip of Clinton answering a question from Wisconsin Republican Sen. Ron Johnson regarding Benghazi.
“You know, Hillary Clinton has had a rough couple of months,” Goldberg said. “She hit her head. She got a concussion. She had a fever. She’s about like Barbara [Walters]. But she was not playing with those senators yesterday when they were talking about Benghazi. The bitch is back!”
The studio audience applauded the clip and co-hosts Joy Behar, Sherri Shepperd, and guest co-host Stacy London supported the notion of Hillary Clinton running for president in 2016. However, Elisabeth Hasselbeck wasn’t too happy about Clinton’s demeanor. “You had senators like McCain, who’s been in and out of politics and war, and I think he felt as though his questions were not answered,” she said. Goldberg responded that America rarely actually knows what goes on when something like this goes down. She said, “We always hear six or seven different stories before someone actually tells us the truth.” (The Daily Caller)
Three months after the deadly attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, an independent review panel is citing “systemic failures” and “management deficits” regarding the U.S. State Department's handling of security. Failures on the part of top State Department officials to provide adequate security at the consulate resulted in the Sept. 11, 2012, deaths of Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.
The report by the Accountability Review Board for Benghazi, released late Tuesday, also found that the attack on the U.S. consulate was the result of a planned terrorist attack as opposed to a spontaneous protest to an anti-Islam video as initially reported. The board did not find that any individual U.S. government employee to be engaged in misconduct. However, it noted that some senior officials at the State Department “demonstrated a lack of proactive leadership and management ability in their responses to security concerns posed by Special Mission Benghazi.”
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who heads the State Department, accepted all of the recommendations for improvement made by the independent panel. Clinton, who announced plans to step down from the post some time ago, has been thought to be a strong contender for the 2016 presidential race. Clinton has said she has no plans to run at this time. However, if she does decide to run, her handling of Benghazi will likely be a major talking point for Republicans. (Politico)
It’s been a busy week for me here in Washington. The week started off with an all-day session focused on protecting our democracy and the right to vote. The next day was spent focusing on the Michigan Right-To-Work legislation that was introduced, passed and signed into law in the blink of an eye. Next up was a Senate Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on the school to prison pipeline, which robs our communities of so many young, promising people who may just need a little help. And yesterday, I spent the better part of my day visiting Senate offices along with some of the Black Women’s Roundtable, to discuss the treatment of Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice by Republicans. Shortly thereafter and much to the dismay of many, she withdrew her name from consideration for nomination. This was all in a week’s work. It’s this work that I hope will allow me to continue to build a solid foundation here in Washington that will help me far surpass my wildest ambition.
No political news outlet worth its salt will let Ambassador Susan Rice’s self-removal from consideration for the position of Secretary of State slide under the radar. Immediately after the 5 o’clock news yesterday, my father called me asking why she had “quit” as he put it. In his mind, she all but had the position. Like my father, many others thought that she would in fact be nominated. But if she had been nominated, there would certainly have been some people who would have done everything in their power to make sure she was not confirmed. Unfortunately for us all, they didn’t even wait until the nomination process began before starting the vetting process and putting her on trial, in some senses.
It’s an unfortunate situation. While many Republicans know that Ambassador Rice had nothing to do with what happened in Benghazi, Libya, that has not stopped them from pointing the finger in her direction for simply being a proxy during news shows after the attack to explain what happened. I won’t say that the intelligence she gave was accurate, because we all know at this point that what she said was erroneous. However, the burden of carrying Benghazi squarely on her back may have factored into her decision to step aside. The confusion over what really happened and why will be examined for days (and maybe longer in some circles), but at the end of the day, the fact that she can no longer be considered for the role is something that does not sit well with me.
Many people don’t realize how Washington works—the many politics at play and steps needed to get things done, the constant push and pull in many different directions, the need to focus on one thing and then quickly on another. The more I learn about how DC works, the more I admire Ambassador Rice, who is not much older than I am, but has accomplished so much. Her career path is incredible, and the imperfections, the lessons learned, are what make me more inspired. When I think about my own aspirations to lead and ascend to higher heights, I know that I am going to have some obstacles. I will make mistakes; I will fall down and hurt myself and maybe others. But more than anything, I will get back up. It’s what my parents have taught me since I was a little girl.
Ambassador Rice did what was asked of her by appearing on those TV shows to talk about Benghazi in the aftermath of the attack. She read and reread the intelligence briefs and she went on the shows saying what she thought she was supposed to. Because of it, she has been knocked around and suffered some bruising to her reputation. But I know without a doubt that this is not the end of Susan Rice’s career. Her star will continue to rise and I am glad to just be witness to it.
United Nations ambassador Susan Rice’s outstretched hand to prominent GOP senators, who criticized her after the deadly attacks in Libya, has been slapped away. Rice’s meeting with Senators John McCain of Arizona, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire seemed to do little to stop their criticisms of her and the Obama administration’s public messaging after the September terrorist attacks on a U.S. Consulate in Benghazi. Graham and Ayotte reaffirmed their pledges to block Rice’s likely nomination to replace Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. “Bottom line, I’m more disturbed than I was before,” Graham said after his closed-door meeting with Rice, whom he had previously said he could not “trust.” McCain told Fox News he would be “very hard-pressed” to support Rice’s nomination. Should President Obama go ahead and nominate Rice, her contentious meeting with the Republicans signals an ugly confirmation battle ahead. (New York Times)
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) has softened his sharp critiques of President Barack Obama and United Nations Amb. Susan Rice, after spending more than a week pledging to block Rice's possible Secretary of State nomination. On Sunday, McCain told Fox News that he would no longer attempt to block Rice's nomination and is open to talks with Rice about her dissemination of incomplete intelligence on the attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. View his remarks in the video above.
According to reports from the Associated Press, efforts to find and "bring to justice" men involved in the attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, Libya are failing miserably. The AP reports that gunmen seen participating in the attack have been seen walking freely in the streets two months after the attack.
Key security commanders and witnesses say they haven't been questioned by Libyan authorities and no suspects have been named or detained. Libyan security forces hired to protect US diplomats in Benghazi are apparently afraid of the extremist militiamen who were around when four Americans were killed on September 11.
The views expressed in this Op-Ed do not necessarily reflect those of Loop 21.
Two black women with the last name Rice walk into a bar… Okay, maybe that sounds like the beginnings of a really bad joke.
What’s not the least bit funny is the clear hypocrisy on the part of Republicans – still bitter and lying to themselves about the reasons President Barack Obama won reelection – in their criticism of United Nations Ambassador Susan Rice and her early and misleading intelligence on the deadly Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attacks at a U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
The aggressive critiques of Rice, which Obama rightly rapped in a White House press conference last week, are the polar opposite of the gentle handling afforded former Bush administration Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who disseminated flawed intelligence related to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and which led the U.S. into 12 years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan and eventually cost more than 6,000 U.S. lives at last count.
Susan Rice and Condi Rice are without doubt distinguished African American women and honorable public servants. Both disseminated the flawed information authorized by their respective White House administrations. But it seems Republicans view these two women’s mistakes through different lenses -- one serves under a beloved and maligned Democratic president and the other served under a tolerated and disgraced Republican president. With Susan Rice seemingly poised to assume the other Rice's old job -- if Obama chooses to nominate her to replace the exiting Hillary Clinton -- Susan Rice will have joined the “I’m a black woman being used as a scapegoat by white men for doing my job” club.
GOP standard bearers like U.S. senators John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) say they found Susan Rice’s behavior unbecoming of a potential secretary of state. They’ve alleged Susan Rice knowingly disseminated incomplete information on the attacks so as to cover up what they say was the Obama administration’s inept response to security concerns at its foreign diplomatic mission in Libya. That reasoning reeks of hypocrisy, given their party’s record on intelligence failures in the Bush administration. On Thursday, McCain said Susan Rice was “not being very bright,” in spreading the anti-Islam video story to the American public. The day before, McCain questioned Susan Rice’s integrity and vowed to block her confirmation to head the State Department in the Senate, a nomination that has yet to even have been put forward. Graham said he would do the same because he “can’t trust her.”
In short, they’re calling the UN ambassador a liar. There’s a major distinction worth pointing out, particularly between Susan Rice and Condi Rice, whom McCain once praised as “a great American success story,” even as liberals openly questioned her integrity.
No further harm or death came of Susan Rice’s account that the Libya attack “began spontaneously … as a reaction to what had transpired … in Cairo, where there was a violent protest … outside of our embassy, sparked by this hateful video,” as she now infamously explained on CBS’s "Face the Nation." But it’s rather hard to say the same regarding Condi Rice. The former State Department head is on record saying Iraq and its now deceased president, Saddam Hussein, had no weapons of mass destruction and did not pose a threat to America and its interests. But she went back on that assessment not long after Republicans began beating the Middle East war drums, after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. The Iraq and Afghanistan wars are the costliest and deadliest conflicts in American history. After she was made to face anti-war Senate Democrats and defend the administration’s intelligence failures – read “lies” -- in her own confirmation hearing to Secretary of State in 2005, Condi Rice seemed to benefit from being in the right and ruling political party in the executive branch.
In a 2005 interview on CBS Morning News, McCain championed the former Bush national security advisor: “I thought that some of the remarks — and I’m not going to mention my [Democratic] colleagues’ names — some of the remarks aimed at her during the hearings challenged her integrity. We can disagree on policy and we disagree on a lot of things, but I think it is very clear that Condoleezza Rice is a person of integrity. And yes, I see this, as some lingering bitterness over a very tough campaign. I hope it dissipates soon.”
Caught that? “Bitterness over a very tough campaign” is precisely what’s staring President Obama and the Democrats in the face today, as they move forward on fiscal cliff budgetary negotiations. McCain and others’ hypocrisy on Susan Rice is staggering. But it’s evidence that there is no bipartisan kumbaya on the horizon in Obama’s second term.
In all fairness, Republicans are right to demand an investigation into whether State Department officials failed to adequately respond to reported requests for additional security for diplomats in Libya. But they seem to always trip on the one good leg they’ve got to stand on when, in ignorance of the past, Republicans open their mouths.
On NBC's Today Show, McCain tried to explain the difference in the treatment of the two Rices:
Former CIA Director David Petraeus said intelligence agencies knew the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya was a terrorist ploy almost immediately, but the administration withheld the information to avoid tipping off suspected al-Qaida affiliates. Petraeus gave the testimony to Congress yesterday in a closed-door hearing and news was reported by the Associated Press, citing information from lawmakers who attended the hearings.
Petraeus also said it was not initially known whether the attackers had infiltrated a demonstration to cover their plot.
Lawmakers who questioned the general said he testified that the CIA's first draft of talking points about the assault that killed four Americans called it as a terrorist attack. Petraeus said that reference was removed from the final version, but he wasn't sure which federal agency deleted it.
Gen. David Petraeus, the CIA director who prior to his appointment successfully commanded U.S. and NATO military forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, resigned Friday afternoon, citing his having had an extramarital affair.
The president has accepted his resignation, detailed in a letter obtained by MSNBC. The president did not ask Petraeus, who has been married to wife, Holly, for more than 37 years, to step down, MSNBC reported.
No mention was made about the Sept. 11, 2012, deaths of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans in Benghazi, Libya, which took place while he led the CIA. The Obama administration has faced criticism about what did it know and when when it comes to who and what led to the deadly attack.
More than a month after Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed in an attack on a US embassy in Libya, government officials in Tunisia confirmed today they have arrested of a man reportedly linked to the attack.
The Tunisian government said it had 28-year-old Tunisian Ali Harzi in custody. The country's interior ministry spokesman, Tarrouch Khaled, said Harzi was in custody in Tunis, the country's capital city. Khaled told the Associated Press "his case is in the hands of justice," but did not elaborate beyond that statement.