Greta Van Susteren makes a big show of saying that her interest in investigating the attacks on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi on September 11, 2012 is all about the Americans who lost their lives there. But in an interview with Senator Lindsey Graham two nights ago, she focused like a laser beam on tarring President Obama. As for getting to the bottom of what caused the deaths of the four Americans? Not so much.
Van Susteren, often touted as Fox's “liberal” host in prime time, continues to ignore the remarks of her own guest, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who argued against jumping to conclusions and for letting official investigators “do their work.” Instead, Van Susteren opened up her discussion with Graham – which was supposedly about his work getting the FBI access to a Benghazi suspect in custody in Tunisia – by saying, “President Obama didn’t make it happen. It was Republican Senator Saxby Chambliss and Senator Lindsey Graham who did it.”
She said that the “good news” is that the FBI is in Tunisia to question the suspect. But you could be forgiven for thinking that the good news to Van Susteren and the Fox/GOP team was that they had found another excuse to use Benghazi to attack President Obama. For example, Van Susteren never asked who the suspect was, whether he was a ringleader of the attackers, what he did before and after the Benghazi attacks and how he was apprehended. Instead, her first question was, “How come two Republican U.S. senators could get done in two days what the President of the United States could not get done in weeks?”
“So what is the explanation?” was Van Susteren’s first question to Senator Graham. She added, “I would think, with all due respect to the United States Senate, that if you are the President of the United States, you have more muscle than you do if you’re a member of the U.S. Senate.”
Van Susteren wanted to know why Graham and Chambliss “had to jump into this.” Despite the fact that Graham and Chambliss are Republicans who just might have a motive to make the president look bad, she didn’t seem to consider that maybe they didn’t “have to” jump in. Nor did she give any apparent thought to what kinds of negotiations the Obama administration was already conducting and to what end. For example, she failed to point out that it was U.S. intelligence that located the suspect, Ali An al-Harzi. The Daily Beast reported:
The (social media) post from Ali Ani al-Harzi, who is now suspected of participating in the attacks, was what helped U.S. intelligence locate him and track him down after he fled Libya for Turkey, according to four U.S. officials familiar with the unfolding investigation.
These people say Turkish officials held al-Harzi for less than a week at the behest of the U.S. government, then sent him to Tunisia. There, he was kept in military custody until last week, when he was transferred to a jail in preparation for a court trial. It’s unclear what role he might have played in the attacks or what he might be charged with. The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. intelligence community are working with Tunisian authorities, but there has been no deal yet on whether to send al-Harzi to the U.S. or keep him in Tunisia where he could be charged under the country’s own counterterrorism laws. The Tunisians have also not yet allowed U.S. officials direct access to the suspect.
Furthermore, Al Jazeera reported on October 25 that Al-Harzi was not being investigated as a leader or organizer of the Benghazi attacks, but rather as a possible participant.
In other words, Al-Harzi may well have been an insignificant player in the attacks. But Van Susteren deliberately gave the impression that he was some key figure. “It’s extraordinary that we would not have wanted to get in there quicklier,” Van Susteren said. “You want to find out what happened in this murder? Let’s move quickly.”
Although Graham accused the Obama administration of making “no effort” “to help the people when they were under attack,” Van Susteren made no effort to correct the record or even note that there are many reports that differ. Instead, she said, “Americans want to know what happened… He (Obama) doesn’t bother to say to the Director of the FBI, ‘Look, if you’re having trouble getting into Tunisia and talking (to them), give me a call.’” Her eyes widened with indignation. “I don’t think he cares!”
Actually, I think it’s Van Susteren and her Fox News cronies who don’t care – unless something can be used against President Obama.
From USA Today:
“The statement appears to contradict Obama’s claim in a second debate with GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney that he identified the Sept. 11 attack that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans as a terror attack the day after it happened.”
Appears to contradict? Contradicts the transcript that clearly shows what Obama said? What ‘appears’ is that this ‘Breaking News’ is just like the rest of the Benghazi ‘bombshell’: wishful thinking by desperate Republicans.
CBS News held onto this footage for more than six weeks, failing to release it even when questions were raised during the Second Presidential Debate as to whether Obama had, in fact, referred to the Benghazi attack as an act of terror before blaming it falsely on demonstrations against an anti-Islamic video. The moderator, CNN’s Candy Crowley, intervened on Obama’s behalf, falsely declaring he had indeed called the attack an act of terror in his Rose Garden statement, and creating the impression that Romney was wrong. HMMMMMMMM.