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Abu Khattala Will Be Tried In A Criminal Court, As He Should Be

Khatallah in Court

Some ten days after he was captured, Ahmed Abu Khattala, a prime suspect in the September 2012 attack on the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi was brought to a courthouse in Washington, D.C. to appear before a Federal Judge, this beginning the criminal process against him:

WASHINGTON — The Libyan militia leader charged in connection with the 2012 attacks in Benghazi that killed the United States ambassador and three others was brought to Washington early Saturday, where he entered a not guilty plea at the federal courthouse, formally opening one of the most complicated terrorism cases the Justice Department has mounted in recent years.

The suspect, Ahmed Abu Khattala, was flown to Washington by helicopter from a Navy warship that had steamed across the Atlantic Ocean from the Mediterranean Sea after he was captured by American commandos at a seaside villa near Benghazi two weeks ago.

Moving Mr. Abu Khattala to Washington to face charges was a significant step for the Obama administration, which had been criticized for moving too slowly to apprehend suspects. Both Democrats and Republicans had injected partisan statements into the debate over proper embassy security and accurate assessments of militant threats. Some also questioned the decision to prosecute Mr. Abu Khattala in civilian court, rather than through a military tribunal at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

Mr. Abu Khattala’s appearance at the United States District Court here spurred a scene that rarely unfolds at the court. In the hours before the hearing, federal marshals wearing bulletproof vests and holding machine guns roamed the streets outside the courthouse, about a mile from the White House, while marked and unmarked government vehicles patrolled nearby.

At the hearing before Magistrate Judge John M. Facciola, the first two rows of the courtroom were filled with senior federal prosecutors and plainclothes F.B.I. agents. Among the prosecutors was the United States attorney for the District of Columbia, Ronald C. Machen Jr., who rarely attends trials, let alone arraignments.

The hearing lasted about 10 minutes and was uneventful. Instead of the jail uniforms defendants typically wear, Mr. Abu Khattala wore a long-sleeved, black shirt with a hood and black pants. He listened through a headset to an interpreter who translated the proceeding into Arabic.

Mr. Abu Khattala said only two words at the hearing. Speaking in Arabic, he answered “yes” when asked whether he swore to tell the truth and “no” when asked whether he had any difficulty understanding what was being said.

Prosecutors have indicted him on one count of conspiring to provide material support and resources to terrorists that resulted in a death; a conviction can carry up to a life sentence. But that single count is a placeholder for more charges the government is expected to file in the coming weeks, and it allows the government to hold Mr. Abu Khattala now without revealing its entire case against him.

A public defender, Michelle Peterson, entered the not guilty plea for Mr. Abu Khattala.

Several minutes after the hearing, marshals blocked off the streets around the courthouse. A motorcade of black sport utility vehicles and a police car with its siren blaring sped from the courthouse to the jail where Mr. Abu Khattala will be held.

The judge scheduled a detention hearing for Wednesday and a status hearing for July 8.

During the ten days between Abu Khattala’s arrest and his arraignment, he was held aboard a U.S. Navy vessel as it made its way back to the United States. While onboard, he was questioned multiple times by American law enforcement and intelligence and, while some reports have described him as having been cooperative during this period but that they believed he was holding some information back. In any event, Abu Khattala received his Miranda Warnings before leaving this ship. That, along with the fact that he is being tried in a criminal court at all is causing some conservatives to criticize the Administration:

 While the suspected mastermind of the 2012 attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi is now on U.S. soil, the political fallout related to his prosecution may just be beginning.

The criminal complaint against Ahmed Abu Khatallah was filed nearly a year ago, and he was nabbed two weeks ago in eastern Libya. He appeared in a federal court in Washington on Saturday – much to some Republicans’ chagrin.

“I have serious concerns that conducting a rushed interrogation onboard a ship and then turning Abu Khatallah over to our civilian courts risks losing critical intelligence that could lead us to other terrorists or prevent future attacks,” Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-New Hampshire, said in a statement Saturday. “I’ve asked the Defense and Justice Departments for an update on his status-including whether he has been told he has the right to remain silent.”

Shortly after the White House announced Abu Khatallah’s capture on July 17, Republicans like Florida Sen. Marco Rubio began to criticize President Barack Obama’s administration because they believed the alleged terrorist should go through a military tribunal at Guantanamo Bay instead of being tried in a federal court.

“If they bring him to the United States, they’re going to Mirandize this guy and it would be a mistake for the ages to read this guy his Miranda rights,” said South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham.

But the White House has defended its decision, saying that they have successfully tried a number of terrorists domestically and that no new captives have gone to the Guantanamo Bay detention facility in years.

“We have not added a single person to the GITMO population since President Obama took office, and we have had substantial success delivering swift justice to terrorists through our federal court system,” National Security Council Spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said in a statement the day the capture was announced.

Power Line’s Paul Mirengoff makes a similar argument:

Our government desperately needs to learn about the terrorist networks that have emerged in North Africa. The capture of Abu Khattala provided a golden opportunity. Reportedly, he has been a “spiritual leader and financier” for various Libyan terrorist groups, including Ansar al-Shariah.

I consider it scandalous that the Obama administration would compromise our ability to obtain information from Abu Khattala on an ongoing basis just to secure a criminal conviction in federal court. In a nation whose president and Congress are serious about protecting the U.S. from attacks — be they in Libya or New York City — this terrorist would go straight to Gitmo and, if necessary, be subjected to enhanced interrogation techniques.

The Obama administration is perennially surprised by the terrorism that occurs in North Africa and the Middle East. Will it surprised by terrorism exported from these regions to our homeland?

In many respects, the complaints about the idea that Abu Kattala is being tried in a civilian court rather than sent to Gitmo is identical to the same complaints we heard just over a year ago when Dzhokar Tsarnaev was finally caught in the Boston Marathon bombing case. At that time, many of the same people complaining now about the treatment of Abu Khattala were arguing that Tsarnaev should be treated as an enemy combatant not a criminal, even though the attack that he took part in occurred on American soil and he was captured on American soil. Others objected to the idea of Tsarnaev being read his Miranda Warnings within days after his arrest, arguing that CIA and FBI interrogation teams should be given more time to interrogate him to see if there were confederates in the plot that he and his brother Tamerlan had undertaken. At least initially, Tsarnaev was not read his Miranda rights, an action which the Justice Department justified under the “public safety exception” to the general Miranda rule. owever, within three days after he was captured hiding in a boat in a backyard in Watertown, Massachusetts, Tsarnaev was read his Miranda rights and the criminal case proceeded forward.

There are differences between Tsarnaev and Abu Khattala, obviously. Tsarneav was a naturalized American citizen who committed a crime on American soil. Abu Khattalah is a citizen of Libya who committed a crime against Americans on Libyan soil, although it’s worth noting that diplomatic outposts are, at least in some technical sense, American soil and the murders committed on those premises clearly fall within the confines of Federal Law. For the most part, though, the differences between the two men and their criminal acts is irrelevant from a legal point of view. Abu Khattala committed a crime under American law, and indeed he was indicted for that crime long before he had been captured in Tripoli earlier this month. Because of that fact, a process was set in motion regarding how matters against him would proceed in much the same way they were from the moment that the Criminal Complaint was filed against Tsarnaev shortly after he had been captured. American intelligence officials had nearly two weeks alone with the man to question him and, to the extent that he was going to be cooperative all, it’s likely that they got everything out of him that they were going to get. There was no reason to delay legal procedures any longer.

As for the argument that Abu Khattala should have been sent to Gitmo and treated as an enemy combatant, that is an argument that is based in the end on the view held by many Republicans that in the “War On Terror” is a battlefield. Abu Khattala was not captured on a battlefield, though, he was arrested by American forces in the capitol of a nominally friendly nation. There is no rational reason to throw him into a prison with dubious legality to begin with. Instead, as we have done with dozens of terror suspects since September 11, 2001, we should put him on trial before the world and let our justice system deal with him. That system isn’t perfect, but it has served us well for 200 years now and there’s no reason to abandon it in the name of the “War On Terror.”

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. jukeboxgrad says:

    The GOP wants him hidden at Gitmo because they realize that statements at trial by Khattala and various witnesses are going to demolish the GOP narrative. Khattala is already on record blaming the video in 2012. Reuters, 10/18/12:

    Libyan Islamist says he was at U.S. consulate during attack … Abu Khattala is being investigated as a suspect in the Benghazi consulate attacks … “The film which insulted the Prophet was a direct attack on our values and if America wants good relations with the Muslim world it needs to do so with respect,” Abu Khattala said. “If they want to do it with force, they will be met with force.”

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 17 Thumb down 2

  2. michael reynolds says:

    Good analysis. I agree. We are not in a state of emergency, the republic is not threatened, this is not the life-or-death of all we hold dear. Try the guy. If he’s convicted, find a hole for him to live out the rest of his life. If he’s found not guilty, let him go. It’s not like we can’t drone his ass later.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 21 Thumb down 2

  3. Ron Beasley says:

    Once again we are in agreement Doug. The civilian courts have convicted several hundred terrorist while the military tribunals have convicted one or two.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1

  4. Another Mike says:

    @jukeboxgrad:

    Khattala is already on record blaming the video in 2012.

    Yes, they get the news in Libya too. They know what Rice, Clinton and Obama have said about the cause of the Benghazi attack. They see the photos of the filmmaker being arrested and led off by five policemen. They understand public relations in Libya. The bad guys understand public relations and the media maybe better than we do.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 13

  5. Another Mike says:

    Yes, they get the news in Libya too. They know what Rice, Clinton and Obama have said about the cause of the Benghazi attack. They see the photos of the filmmaker being arrested and led off by five policemen. They understand public relations in Libya. The bad guys understand public relations and the media maybe better than we do.

    Poorly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 16

  6. jukeboxgrad says:

    They know what Rice, Clinton and Obama have said about the cause of the Benghazi attack.

    “Rice, Clinton and Obama” blamed the video because the video was to blame. Link.

    They see the photos of the filmmaker being arrested and led off by five policemen.

    Try reading National Review. If you did, you would know this (link):

    … if you’re a two-time felon who is out on parole and told not to use an alias in business dealings or use the Internet and then you lie to reporters at the AP and WSJ using your alias and admitting you used the Internet, then what do you think is going to happen?

    The GOP is tough on crime except when it’s not.

    Highly-rated. Helpful or Unhelpful: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 0

  7. anjin-san says:

    @ Another Mike

    How are things on Fantasy Island? Is “Tattoo” there with you?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  8. bill says:

    @jukeboxgrad: i doubt that, and since when do known terrorists make good witnesses anyway? do you find it at all “ironic” that he was nailed during the latest round of benghazi speak?! but for all intents and purposes most of hillary’s supporters couldn’t care less about what happened there- she could be on camera ordering the execution of American diplomats and they’d take her side.
    but back to reality- try him in a court of law and move on.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 11

  9. bill says:

    @jukeboxgrad:

    i doubt that, and since when do known terrorists make good witnesses anyway? do you find it at all “ironic” that he was nailed during the latest round of benghazi speak?! but for all intents and purposes most of hillary’s supporters couldn’t care less about what happened there- she could be on camera ordering the execution of American diplomats and they’d take her side.
    but back to reality- try him in a court of law and move on.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 7

  10. Tyrell says:

    There could be some deal made in return for information on other accomplices ( their organization, networks, weapons, locations, and plans ) who were involved in this horrible crime. Life without parole could be one option in return for useful information.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  11. Another Mike says:

    @anjin-san:

    How are things on Fantasy Island? Is “Tattoo” there with you?

    Do you really have nothing else to say?

    My comment above should have been directed to jukeboxgrad, but after having two attempted replies eaten by the spam filter, I sent it as I did. Now I know what became of Groucho’s old magic-word duck.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 9

  12. michael reynolds says:

    @Another Mike:

    So. . . You think a Libyan terrorist who has just been grabbed by the military which Mr. Obama commands, wants to support Mr. Obama’s line.

    Genius. Really. Genius!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 16 Thumb down 2

  13. jukeboxgrad says:

    bill:

    since when do known terrorists make good witnesses anyway

    I wasn’t making a claim about his ability to charm the jury. The GOP has invested heavily in selling this phony claim: “the video had nothing to do with it.” I was pointing out the consequences for the GOP when there is massive news coverage of trial evidence proving the GOP’s claim is false.

    do you find it at all “ironic” that he was nailed during the latest round of benghazi speak

    Thanks to the GOP, “benghazi speak” has been going on continuously, and there is no end in sight. No matter when we nailed him, you could say “that he was nailed during the latest round of benghazi speak.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  14. DrDaveT says:

    I’m saddened that we are now at a point where we can use phrases like “enemy combatant” without irony, and without apparent self-awareness that we are talking about civilian criminals.

    Military justice is for militaries — the formally constituted and sanctioned armed forces of political entities. Everyone else is a civilian, and when they do naughtiness that makes them criminals. Criminals are tried in civil courts. This should not be difficult.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  15. stonetools says:

    @michael reynolds:

    You see, Mike, ALL the Muslims are in cahoots with the Muslim-in-chief and his whitey-hating wife.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 0

  16. President Camacho says:

    If we left this up to the commissions at Gitmo it would take 10 plus years and countless millions of $. How many contested cases have been successfully completed there since 01? KSM’s case has been going on how long? I know some guilty pleas have been done but not sure about contested cases let alone any high profile ones. Good decision by the gov on this one

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  17. bill says:

    @jukeboxgrad: sorry for the double post- it said i was “spam” for whatever reason! anyhow- we’ll see how it spins during he trial i imagine?!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  18. jukeboxgrad says:

    it said i was “spam”

    That’s because you tried to use the Reply feature. It works, except if you are replying to me. Don’t ask why. It’s classified.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  19. HankP says:

    It’s simple, they want him tortured. Ever since the Bush administration let that genie out of the bottle it’s the subtext to every hawk’s comments on any non-American (for now) captured for any crime that could possibly be linked to terrorism or Islam.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

  20. Tyrell says:

    @President Camacho: Yes, and this trial should be carried out at a quick pace, no kangaroo courts such as the O.J. Simpson circus, with a judge that is fair and firm.
    These famous trial were done in less than a year, some in a matter of a few months:
    The Booth Conspirators (even though this was basically a military trial, with the defendants not allowed to testify. This was probably illegal since these were civilians and not soldiers. Still many lingering questions about the assassination)
    Al Capone
    Lindbergh Kidnapper
    Nuremberg War trials
    There is no reason that this trial can be over and done in months.
    I also have a question that maybe someone can answer. Can a military court judge also preside at civilian trials ? How about after they leave the military ?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

  21. President Camacho says:

    CMs are Article I courts. Federal courts are article III courts. Don’t think so. But Cong creates both courts’ jurisdiction and pres picks/appoints and Cong affirms; so might be possible. Beyond my limited knowledge

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  22. anjin-san says:

    @ Another Mike

    Do you really have nothing else to say?

    To you? Not really. One dose of light ridicule is all your comments here merit.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 10 Thumb down 0

  23. Gustopher says:

    I think those in the far right who oppose trials and Miranda rights for terrorists do far more harm to this country than the terrorists have managed to do. When one of our two major parties comes out opposed to the rule of law, and is rewarded for that from their base, it’s pretty scary.

    Do you know what’s not scary though? Benghazi. It was a trivial pinprick, something that we are strong enough not to be significantly harmed by and where we shouldn’t be letting our fears compromise our principles.

    “Enemy combatant” really only makes sense when we are fighting a significant threat to our survival — I wouldn’t restrict it to soldiers of an opposing state’s army, but I wouldn’t apply it to some pissant gnat like this guy.

    Try him, in as public a setting as possible. Let the bed-wetting part of the Republican Party fume, and maybe, just maybe, when this guy is convicted, they might learn something.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  24. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Another Mike: AHA!!! Khattala is just an Obama plant doing his masters bidding. Sir, you are brilliant!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  25. Another Mike says:

    @michael reynolds:

    So. . . You think a Libyan terrorist who has just been grabbed by the military which Mr. Obama commands, wants to support Mr. Obama’s line.

    There is such a thing as telling people what they want to hear. One does not have to be a genius to figure out what they want to hear.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 8

  26. Tony W says:

    Doug, If only ‘conservatives’ had your presence of mind during the Bush administration – Guantanamo would not be the place it is today.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  27. Rafer Janders says:

    @Another Mike:

    There is such a thing as telling people what they want to hear. One does not have to be a genius to figure out what they want to hear.

    What the hell does this mean?!?!?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  28. beth says:

    @Rafer Janders: It means that no matter what Khattala says if it doesn’t fit Mike’s worldview he won’t believe it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  29. lounsbury says:

    @Another Mike:

    No you drooling idiot. It was clear from the beginning to anyone who follows the Arabic media that it was the drumming up of protests over the movie in the days prior via Salafist channels. All this in their bloody native, language, which is not Fox American.

    You idiots seem to think the entire world revolves around your idiotic provincial American media. It doesn’t and most Libyans don’t know or give a fig about the political idiocy in USA about this.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  30. Another Mike says:

    @lounsbury:

    It was clear from the beginning to anyone who follows the Arabic media

    Ok, I didn’t realize we had an Arabic speaker here. How about some links reporting on what the Arab media in Libya were saying at the time.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  31. jukeboxgrad says:

    How about some links reporting on what the Arab media in Libya were saying at the time.

    Funny you should ask. John Rosenthal is a conservative and a contributor to National Review. I’m also pretty sure he’s “an Arabic speaker.” He said this:

    … there is in fact hard evidence that the local Islamist scene in Benghazi was in uproar about the “anti-Islam video” in the run-up to the attack, and that this outrage figured prominently among the motivations of the assailants. This evidence is drawn precisely from social media. The bulk of the evidence comes from the Ansar Minbar in Libya Facebook page and the associated libya-s.net online forum. … the Ansar Minbar page has clear connections to the jihadist milieu in Benghazi and, specifically, to Ansar al-Sharia, the militia that is commonly supposed to have spearheaded the attack on the US mission. This lends the evidence particular significance.

    Early in the evening of Sept. 11, 2012, the Ansar Minbar page was closely following events in Cairo, where a crowd of thousands was besieging the US Embassy in protest against the famous YouTube clip … Shortly after 6 p.m., two timeline entries posted in quick succession called on Libyans to emulate their Egyptian brothers and take action. The second finished with the exhortation “Long live Jihad!” Just three hours later, a poster on libya-s.net announced the start of the attack.

    … At least equally significant, on the very night of the attack — indeed, while the attack was underway — the February 17 Martyrs Brigade posted a statement on Facebook explicitly linking the attack to the “insult” of the Prophet Muhammad. The powerful local militia was employed by the United States to guard the mission. Its men are widely thought to have stood down out of sympathy for the assailants. The statement confirms that they did. Posted Sept. 11 at 11:31 p.m., it praises “the young men who overran the embassy jealously protecting our noble Prophet and protesting against the insult to him.”

    He goes on to say that the “anti-Islam YouTube clip … undoubtedly did play a role in the run-up to the attack.”

    Daniel Pipes is also a conservative and a contributor to National Review, and Pipes has been described by Breitbart as one of “the most respected Islam watchers in conservative circles.” Pipes said this (link, 7/8/13, updated 1/13/14):

    In an article, “Rampaging Islamists,” I listed Libya as one of the over thirty countries where the Innocence of Muslims video had prompted demonstrations, rioting, or violence in September 2012; it seemed obvious at that time that the attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi fit into the much larger context of agitation and hostility sweeping so many Muslim communities.

    But then, after Barack Obama nominated Susan Rice as his national security adviser, her having repeatedly stated that the attack had been a “spontaneous” response to Innocence, a demonstration that “spun out of control,” prompted a backlash against this account of what happened on Sep.11, 2012. The conservative interpretation focused entirely on Al-Qaeda and rejected any role for Innocence.

    Despite this consensus, I stood by the contention that Innocence played a part in the events that night. Now, the journalist John Rosenthal confirms this connection at “New Evidence Links Benghazi Attack to Anti-Muslim Movie,” where he argues that Innocence served as a “catalyst” for the attack on the US mission.

    No one has been able to address this “New Evidence.” Which goes along with plenty of other evidence. Link.

    I know this isn’t exactly what you meant by “Arab media” but I think it still answers the question.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  32. jukeboxgrad says:

    Another Mike:

    There is such a thing as telling people what they want to hear. One does not have to be a genius to figure out what they want to hear.

    It’s not just that Khattala is quoted blaming the video in the Reuters interview published 10/18/12, which I cited above (and this is not the only such interview). He also blamed the video during the attack. NY Times, 6/18/14:

    … As the attack in Benghazi was unfolding … Khattala told fellow Islamist fighters and others that the assault was retaliation for the … insulting video, according to people who heard him

    And this is consistent with many other eyewitness reports saying the same thing. Link.

    So tell us more about how your “telling people what they want to hear” theory fits into this picture.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  33. Another Mike says:

    @jukeboxgrad:

    I know this isn’t exactly what you meant by “Arab media” but I think it still answers the question.

    Yes, this is something that definitely needs to be investigated. If this is true, then we know that certain people knew of the film and were trying to use it to incite people. It is not clear that anyone was excited by the provocation. There was no demonstration or riot prior to the attack in Benghazi. In Cairo there was a demonstration and riot. The Cairo demonstration was planned and had been advertised in the newspaper the day before. The embassy knew the demonstration was to occur. Possible the provocation was supposed to cause a demonstration in Benghazi, but it never materialized. What occurred was a planned attack without cover of a demonstration.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5

  34. Another Mike says:

    @jukeboxgrad:

    So tell us more about how your “telling people what they want to hear” theory fits into this picture.

    Any comments and quotes made by eye witnesses prior to Ambassador Rice’s TV appearances on 16 Sep 2011 ( I think) or prior to President Obama’s speech at the United Nations 25 Sep 2011 would be would be credible. Anything said after President Obama’s speech might be just telling us what we want to hear.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 5

  35. jukeboxgrad says:

    certain people knew of the film and were trying to use it to incite people

    No kidding. It was shown on Egypt TV by people who were apparently “trying to use it to incite people.” And it worked.

    There was no demonstration or riot prior to the attack in Benghazi.

    I realize that this is a popular talking point, but there’s a lot of evidence contrary to this claim. Link. Also, irrelevant. The presence or absence of a protest tells us nothing about whether or not the attackers were motivated by the video.

    What occurred was a planned attack

    The original CIA memo said this:

    We believe based on currently available information that the attacks in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo

    “The protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo” is an obvious reference to the video, because those protests were undoubtedly about the video. And the Senate report said essentially the same thing:

    Some intelligence suggests the attacks were likely put together in short order, following that day’s violent protests in Cairo against an inflammatory video, suggesting that these and other terrorist groups could conduct similar attacks with little advance warning … Intelligence suggests that the attack was not a highly coordinated plot, but was opportunistic

    So both these sources say there wasn’t much planning, and both these sources reference the video, either directly or indirectly. No one has ever presented evidence of more than three days of planning. Three days is what they had, because the video was seen by millions on Egypt TV on 9/8/12. Less than 48 hours later the massive riots in Cairo began, and over the course of several days the violence spread to about 30 countries, killing at least 30 people.

    Rush and Sean and Bill like to repeat the mantra ‘planned attack,’ but CIA and the Senate both say there was hardly any planning. CIA said that at the time, and the Senate reiterated that finding in their 2014 report. ‘Spontaneous,’ in this context, doesn’t mean there was no planning whatsoever. It just means there was, at most, 3 days of planning.

    The video triggered riots in many countries, and there’s plenty of evidence that the Benghazi attackers were also motivated by the video. Link.

    this is something that definitely needs to be investigated

    I have no idea what you think still “needs to be investigated,” other than trying to understand why so many conservatives have told this brazen lie: “the video had nothing to do with it.”

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  36. jukeboxgrad says:

    Any comments and quotes made by eye witnesses prior to Ambassador Rice’s TV appearances on 16 Sep 2011 ( I think) or prior to President Obama’s speech at the United Nations 25 Sep 2011 would be would be credible

    Aside from getting the year wrong, your dates are correct.

    I have already cited numerous “comments and quotes made by eye witnesses” that were reported in articles published 9/11, 9/12, and 9/13. Link. On 9/12/12, National Review posted an article blaming the video. They posted this article roughly 14 hours after Stevens died.

    Your theory that any witness reports were somehow driven by statements by Obama et al is pure baloney.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  37. Another Mike says:

    @jukeboxgrad:

    Your theory that any witness reports were somehow driven by statements by Obama et al is pure baloney.

    Here is what I am saying. Any reports by individuals after President Obama announced to the world at the United Nations on 25 Sep must be questioned. Individuals involved in the attack were probably watching the news after the attack to see what the Americans were going to do and and what the Americans were saying about the attack. They would have known that the official position of the American government was that the attack was caused by a YouTube video.

    For all the emotion about the video it seems interesting that there were no riots or demonstrations in Benghazi. It was a full-scale military attack.

    Since there is now a select committee investigating the attack, we will probably get to the bottom of the attack. I am sure everything you have mentioned will be duly considered, and hopefully everyone’s questions will be answered. I’m keeping an open mind on Benghazi and am sure you are doing the same.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 3

  38. jukeboxgrad says:

    Here is what I am saying.

    Here is what I am saying: you’re not paying attention.

    Any reports by individuals after President Obama announced to the world at the United Nations on 25 Sep must be questioned

    Good thing I cited numerous “reports by individuals” prior to that date.

    They would have known that the official position of the American government was that the attack was caused by a YouTube video.

    There is no logic to the idea that they would have known that, and there is no logic to the idea that they would be motivated to lie in order to please “the American government.”

    it seems interesting that there were no riots or demonstrations in Benghazi

    It seems interesting that you are working hard to not notice that I presented evidence of “demonstrations in Benghazi.”

    Since there is now a select committee investigating the attack, we will probably get to the bottom of the attack

    Hilarious. Gowdy is a liar. Link.

    I’m keeping an open mind on Benghazi

    On the contrary. You are consistently ignoring all inconvenient facts.

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  39. wr says:

    @Another Mike: “ere is what I am saying. Any reports by individuals after President Obama announced to the world at the United Nations on 25 Sep must be questioned. ”

    Oh,, my God… the entire world is in on the coverup… and you’re the only one who knows!!!

    You are incredibly brave to be posting like this. Whatever you do, make sure that tin foil is on super-tight so none of the NSA/Caliphate’s brain rays can get to you as they have to so many other true patriots!!!!!!!!!

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  40. wr says:

    @Another Mike: “. I’m keeping an open mind on Benghazi and am sure you are doing the same.”

    Yes, there’s nothing like “not only is Obama covering up his great evil, but all the terrorists in the world are conspiring to help him!!!” to demonstrate the openness of your mind on the subject.

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  41. Rafer Janders says:

    @Another Mike:

    Individuals involved in the attack were probably watching the news after the attack to see what the Americans were going to do and and what the Americans were saying about the attack. They would have known that the official position of the American government was that the attack was caused by a YouTube video.

    And anti-American attackers who had just stormed a US consulate and killed four Americans would then be monitoring the US media so that they could….support of the official position of the US government?

    Just how stupid are you?

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