Sunday, October 07, 2012

An exchange both media and White House hope you forget

As more details emerge about last month's attack on the US Consulate in Libya, one public exchange people should familiarize themselves with is this one from September 13th, when CNN's Elise Labott asked for answers and State Dept. spokesperson Victoria Nuland (below) spun and lied.

Elise Labott:  Can you talk a little bit more about the security that was at the Embassy? It seems that for an area such as Benghazi, where there was a lot of instability, there were very few guards there. And can you talk about whether the U.S. asked Libya, the Libyan Government, earlier in the week for extra security precaution and whether that – extra security precautions or security personnel and whether that request was fulfilled?
Victoria Nuland: Well, let me start by reminding you that we are extremely cautious in any circumstances about talking publicly about our security arrangements. You can understand that the more you talk about these things, the more difficult it is to maintain security at your facilities. So --
Elise Labott:  It does seem though that there were very few security personnel at this location.
Victoria Nuland:  I'm going to reject that, Elise. Let me tell you what I can about the security at our mission in Benghazi. It did include a local Libyan guard force around the outer perimeter. This is the way we work in all of our missions all around the world, that the outer perimeter is the responsibility of the host government. There was obviously a physical perimeter barrier, a wall. And then there was a robust American security presence inside the compound. This is absolutely consistent with what we have done at a number of missions similar to Benghazi around the world.
Elise Labott:   Could you talk about whether a request was made to the Libyan Government as early as Sunday or Monday and whether that – for additional security precautions, given the fact that there was some trouble in the area, and whether that request was fulfilled?
Victoria Nuland:  I'm not prepared to talk about specific diplomatic engagements between us and the Libyans on security, either before or after.
As Norah O'Donnell (CBS News -- link is video) reported last Thursday,, requests (plural) had been made for better security.
Elise Labott:   Well, I mean, I have to take issue with that, because there have been several incidents, including you from the podium, throughout the Arab Spring where you've said –
Victoria Nuland: Right.
Elise Labott:   -- that you've talked about discussions with the various governments –
Victoria Nuland: Right.
Elise Labott: -- about needing additional security precautions – the Syrians, for instance –
Victoria Nuland: Right.
Elise Labott:  -- which was one of the reasons that you closed your Embassy, because those precautions were not taken. So why would this be any different?
Victoria Nuland:  Elise, I'm happy to see whether there's more that we can share on this, but I don't have it today.

 When Labott asked about whether there had been a request for additional security, Nuland lied and stated she was going "to reject that."  Nuland was already aware of the requests.  She was informed on September 12th.

Susan Rice wasn't the only one lying to America. 

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