… is this big takedown by Kurt Eichenwald, in Newsweek, about the phony nature of the whole inquiry. (For my previous installment on the fraudulence of this committee, and how the press has allowed itself to be used, please check here.)
Two bits of factual-comparison data from the story. First, on the proportionality of the numerous Congressional hearings on the Benghazi case:
Congress convened 22 hearings about the 9/11 attack that killed almost 3,000 citizens working in the World Trade Center in downtown Manhattan; this week, Congress will be holding its 21st hearing about an attack that killed four people working in Libya, with many more sessions left to come…
In fact, no previous assault on a diplomatic outpost has received this kind of relentless expression of congressional outrage. There weren’t investigations that were anything on this scale about the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Beirut in 1983 (63 killed), on the U.S. Embassy annex northeast of Beirut in 1984 (24 killed) or on the U.S. Embassy in Sanaa, Yemen, in 2008 (18 killed)….
Benghazi was just one of 21 major assaults on an American diplomatic facility in the last 20 years; the personnel murdered there were among about 90 other Americans hired by the government to work in diplomatic outposts who were killed in terrorist attacks from 1998 through 2012, according to a State Department report.
Then, on the signs of the committee’s real interest:
Since March, the committee has issued almost 30 press releases related to Clinton; only five have been put out on every other topic combined. Then there is the committee’s interim report from this past May. The word Obama—who cannot run for commander-in-chief again [JF note: and who, after all, was president during this episode]—is not mentioned. Neither is the word president. Or Ansar al-Sharia, the group suspected of engineering the attack. White House makes only 13 appearances. Imagine an investigation on 9/11 that did not mention Al-Qaeda, Osama bin Laden or President Bush; that is what has been done with the Benghazi committee’s first public report….
The name Ahmed Abu Khatalla, the man arrested as the mastermind of the attack, shows up once. The word terrorist appears only 10 times. As for references to Clinton, the leading candidate for the Democratic nomination? Those show up 36 times in just 13 pages, an astonishing number given that the word Benghazi appears only 38 times. But the winner for the most mentions is the 39 references to emails from Clinton and the State Department.
This summing-up of the piece might sound intemperate, taken on its own. But in context of the evidence Eichenwald offers, it seems fair enough:
It is impossible to review what the Benghazi committee has done as anything other than taxpayer-funded political research of the opposing party’s leading candidate for president…. But the modern McCarthys of the Benghazi committee cannot perform this political theater on their own—they depend on reporters to aid in the attempts to use government for the purpose of destroying others with bogus “scoops” ladled out by members of Congress and their staffs.
Worth reading before Hillary Clinton and Rep. Gowdy’s committee face off a few hours from now. Or for that matter, after her appearance.