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NYT: Hillary Accepted Responsibility, Not Blame

From a surprisingly (slightly) critical New York Times:

Facing Congress, Clinton Defends Her Actions Before and After Libya Attack

By MICHAEL R. GORDON | January 23, 2013

WASHINGTON — In one of her final appearances as secretary of state, Hillary Rodham Clinton on Wednesday vigorously defended her handling of last September’s attack on the United States diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, which killed four Americans and prompted a scathing review of State Department procedures.

For the record, this seems to be their only piece in the New York Times on the Benghazi hearings. However, this article does contain a couple of surprisingly critical sentences, at least surprising critical coming from The Times.

“As I have said many times, I take responsibility, and nobody is more committed to getting this right,” she said, reading a statement during a day of testimony before Senate and House committees. “I am determined to leave the State Department and our country safer, stronger and more secure.”

Does she think she has done that? Is she really that deluded?

But, as usual, Hillary accepted the responsibility but refused to take any of the blame. (A detail that even The Times finally notices below.) But being a Democrat means never having to say you’re sorry.

But Mrs. Clinton, whose appearance before Congress had been postponed since December because of illness, quickly departed from the script. She jousted with Republican lawmakers over who deserved blame for the security problems at the compound, and choked up as she described being at Joint Base Andrews outside Washington when the bodies of the Americans killed in the assault arrived from Libya.

“I stood next to President Obama as the Marines carried those flag-draped caskets off the plane at Andrews,” she said. “I put my arms around the mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, sons and daughters.” …

And, according to the Tyrone Woods’ father, Charles Woods, she also lied her head off. Woods said Mrs. Clinton told him that the US would “make sure that the person who made that film is arrested and prosecuted.” Which, come to think of it, wasn’t a lie after all.

It was the first time she had faced extensive questioning about her role in the episode. In essence, Mrs. Clinton’s approach was to accept the responsibility for security lapses in Benghazi but not the blame…

This? From the New York Times?

“I feel responsible for the nearly 70,000 people who work for the State Department,” Mrs. Clinton told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in the morning. “But the specific security requests pertaining to Benghazi, you know, were handled by the security professionals in the department. I didn’t see those requests. They didn’t come to me. I didn’t approve them. I didn’t deny them.” …

Even though many of these specific requests came from her bosom buddy, Chris Stevens.

For all of the hours of testimony, the hearings did little to clarify the role of the White House in overseeing the American presence in Libya before the attack or explain why the Pentagon had few forces available on the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to respond quickly to any assault on diplomatic outposts in the region.

There was also little questioning about what is being done to track down the culprits. (Probably because we all know that practically nothing is being done.)

Instead, none of the Democrats asked any real questions. And even the few Republicans who did ask probing questions did not follow them up, lest they be attacked in the media for beating up on a frail, sick woman.

A persistent line of questioning by Republican lawmakers concerned the initial comments from Ms. Rice that the attack might have resulted from a protest, over an anti-Islamic video, that spun out of control.

Mrs. Clinton defended Ms. Rice even as she appeared to distance herself from Ms. Rice’s comments. “I told the American people that heavily armed militants assaulted our compound, and I vowed to bring them to justice,” Mrs. Clinton said…

That’s not what she told Charles Woods. And that is certainly not the impression she gave in her statements during the weeks after the attack, when blamed the attack on the protests over that anti-Mohammed video, and castigated the video maker.

Mrs. Clinton sought to put the events in Benghazi in a regional context, noting the presence of a group in northern Mali affiliated with Al Qaeda.

“Benghazi didn’t happen in a vacuum,” she said. “The Arab revolutions have scrambled power dynamics and shattered security forces across the region. And instability in Mali has created an expanding safe haven for terrorists who look to extend their influence and plot further attacks of the kind we saw just last week in Algeria.” …

She’s right. The attacks in Benghazi and Mali and now Algeria are not happening in a vacuum. They are all due to the so-called ‘Arab Spring.’ And guess who helped unleash the ‘Arab Spring’? Mrs. Clinton and Mr. Obama.

But she won’t accept the blame for that, either.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Thursday, January 24th, 2013. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “NYT: Hillary Accepted Responsibility, Not Blame”

  1. heykev

    She is not accepting responsibility or she’d accept blame.

    But being a Democrat, she accepts neither – their SOP.




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