Interlude—Still being misreported: Tomorrow, we will return to the New York Times’ front-page report about what happened in Benghazi.
For our previous report, click here.
In his lengthy front-page report, David Kirkpatrick shot down two key parts of last year’s script concerning Benghazi. Sadly, he left other parts of the script in place.
More specifically, he misparaphrased what Susan Rice said when she appeared on the Sunday morning programs on September 16, 2012. He even flatly misquoted her at one point.
Through these actions, Kirkpatrick keeps script alive. More specifically, he perpetuates the idea that Rice misspoke on those Sunday shows.
He misquoted Rice from Meet the Press. Here is the transcript to which we’ll return tomorrow:
GREGORY (9/16/12): The images, as you well know, are jarring to Americans watching all of this play out this week, and we'll share the map of all of this turmoil with our viewers to show the scale of it across not just the Arab world but the entire Islamic world, and flashpoints as well.To watch the full exchange, click here. Even as he debunked two parts of the Benghazi script, Kirkpatrick continued to misrepresent what Rice said on that program.
In Egypt, of course, the protests outside the U.S. Embassy there that Egyptian officials were slow to put down. This weekend in Pakistan, protests, as well, there. More anti-American rage, also protests against the drone strikes. In Yemen, you also had arrests and some deaths outside of our U.S. Embassy there.
How much longer can Americans expect to see these troubling images and these protests go forward?
RICE: Well, David, we can't predict with any certainty. But let's remember what has transpired over the last several days. This is a response to a hateful and offensive video that was widely disseminated throughout the Arab and Muslim world.
Obviously, our view is that there is absolutely no excuse for violence, and that what has happened is condemnable. But this is a spontaneous reaction to a video, and it's not dissimilar, but perhaps on a slightly larger scale, than what we have seen in the past with Satanic Verses, with the cartoon of the Prophet Mohammed.
Now, the United States has made very clear, and the president has been very plain, that our top priority is the protection of American personnel in our facilities and bringing to justice those who attacked our facilities—
GREGORY: Well, let's talk—you talk about this as spontaneous. Can you say definitively that the attacks on our consulate in Libya that killed Ambassador Stevens and others there, security personnel, that was spontaneous? Was it a planned attack? Was there a terrorist element to it?
RICE: Well, let me tell you the best information we have at present.
First of all, there is an FBI investigation, which is ongoing, and we look to that investigation to give us the definitive word as to what transpired.
But putting together the best information that we have available to us today, our current assessment is that what happened in Benghazi was, in fact, initially a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired hours before in Cairo—almost a copycat of the demonstrations against our facility in Cairo, which were prompted, of course, by the video.
What we think then transpired in Benghazi is that opportunistic extremist elements came to the consulate as this was unfolding. They came with heavy weapons, which, unfortunately, are readily available in post-revolutionary Libya, and that escalated into a much more violent episode.
Obviously, that's our best judgment now. We'll await the results of the investigation, and the president has been very clear—we'll work with the Libyan authorities to bring those responsible to justice.
At one point, he even flatly misquotes her! Such is the power of script in our culture—in our degraded lives.