US toned down Benghazi memos

2013-05-10 20:07
(Picture: AP)

(Picture: AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Washington - Obama administration officials edited memos about last year's killing of the US ambassador in Libya to omit reference to a CIA warning of a threat from al-Qaeda, ABC News reported on Friday in a story that could fuel Republican attempts to prove a cover-up.

E-mails between the state department, White House and intelligence agencies show extensive editing by the administration as it went through 12 different drafts of the memos explaining the Benghazi attack.

The so-called "talking point" memos were used to prepare US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice, before she appeared on television talk shows to discuss the 11 September 2012, attack on the US mission in Benghazi in which Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed.

In one exchange, the state department's top spokesperson at the time, Victoria Nuland, objected to including the CIA's reference to intelligence about the threat from al-Qaeda in Benghazi and eastern Libya.

That "could be abused by members [of Congress] to beat up the state department for not paying attention to warnings, so why would we want to feed that either? Concerned", Nuland wrote in one e-mail obtained by ABC News.

Response to attack

The report came as Republicans in Congress stepped up their efforts to hammer Democrats over the Obama administration's response to the attack by suspected Islamist militants, including the role of then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

E-mail traffic is central to what Republicans say is the administration's attempt to diminish the seriousness of the assault in Benghazi, because it came at the height of the US presidential campaign and might have made Obama look weak on national security before the November election.

Congressman Elijah Cummings, a Maryland Democrat who sits on the House of Representatives Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said the Republican accusations were an attempt to damage Clinton in case she decides to run for president in 2016.

"It is so much an effort... to harm her before she even makes a decision and then to make sure they've got some material after she decides to run for president, assuming she does," he told MSNBC's "Morning Joe”.

Read more on:    cia  |  al-qaeda  |  hillary clinton  |  libya  |  us  |  benghazi attack

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
6 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.