Rep. Westmoreland: Emails Show Effort to Maintain Benghazi Narrative

Thursday, 01 May 2014 05:35 PM

By Courtney Coren

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The Benghazi emails show that then-U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice was sent on the Sunday morning talk shows to mislead the American people and to uphold President Barack Obama's narrative on al-Qaida, says Rep. Lynn Westmoreland, a subcommittee chairman on the House Intelligence Committee.

And the argument that White House press secretary Jay Carney tried to make Wednesday that the emails were about other demonstrations in the Muslim world simply don't ring true, Westmoreland told J.D. Hayworth on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV.

"You've got Ms. Rice going on all the Sunday news talk shows and you just had four Americans get killed in an attack on the temporary mission facility in Benghazi, you've had the CIA annex attack, and you think she's going to go in there and be asked a question about what went on in Egypt?" he said Thursday.

"Give me a break ... Benghazi was going to be the focus and that's the reason to me they gave her those talking points, so she could mislead the American people," the Georgia Republican said.

Story continues below video.

Westmoreland doesn't believe the White House culprit was Matt Rhodes, a national security speechwriter for Obama who was part of the email chain to Susan Rice. But it does allude to "a putting together of how they can mold those talking points to fit what the president's statement had been about al-Qaida" during the 2012 presidential campaign.

Still, Westmoreland believes "more information about these emails" is needed, but he is hesitant about House Speaker John Boehner's decision to form a select committee to investigate the terrorist attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, on Sept. 11, 2012.

But, Westmoreland said, he will work with the committee and provide the background work and any documentation it needs.

"We know exactly what happened. It's getting the proof to prove what happened [that] has been the biggest undertaking," he added.

An email was obtained by Judicial Watch, a government watchdog group, through a Freedom of Information Act request, which showed that Rhodes had recommended that Rice "underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and a not a broader failure of policy" when she went on the Sunday morning talk shows following the Benghazi attack, which killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens.

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