I don’t think any serious observer believes that Susan Rice’s false claim in September 2012, presented on network talk show after network talk show, that the Benghazi attacks were the product of a video originated with Rice. Rice was merely our ambassador to the U.N. at the time. Thus, she had no responsibility for the security of the compound in Benghazi, and was not in a good position to assess what had transpired there.
But who told Rice what to say? The evidence has always pointed to high level White House staffer Ben Rhodes. As Investor’s Business Daily reminds us, on Friday, September 14, two days before Rice’s appearances on the Sunday talk shows, Ben Rhodes sent an email with the subject line: “RE: PREP Call with Susan: Saturday at 4:00 p.m. ET.” At the Saturday prep session, Rice was told “to underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy.”
Now, a newly released Hillary Clinton schedule shows that Clinton met with Rice in Clinton’s office from 9:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. on September 14, 2012 — the same day Rhodes sent his email announcing the prep session with Rice and a day before the session took place. The schedule doesn’t say what Clinton and Rice talked about, but one topic (if not the only one) almost certainly was Rice’s impending appearance on the talk shows. After all, this was a matter of pressing concern, and Rhodes was setting up a prep session.
Investor’s Business Daily suggests that the “internet video” narrative was concocted at the Sept. 14 meeting between Clinton and Rice. Actually, it had already been concocted. However, it’s likely that Clinton used the meeting to sell it to, and/or review it with, Rice.
It isn’t clear whether Clinton participated in the formal prep session the next day. According to Investor’s Business Daily, her schedule indicates that she returned from Andrews Air Force Base, where she had pushed the internet video lie on families of the Benghazi victims, by 3:30 p.m. Thus, Clinton could have participated by video conference. Or she might have been content to rely on her coaching of Rice the previous day.
Regardless, Hillary’s fingerprints are all over the Benghazi lie. And it looks increasingly likely that she had a key role in causing Susan Rice to peddle it.