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Robert Bennett: Media are failing in Rice coverage

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  • liberal larry salt lake City, utah
    Dec. 3, 2012 6:56 a.m.

    Susan Rice was repeating the information she was getting from the intelligence sources, she was merely a spokesman for the administration.

    Mr. Bennett failed to mention that Republicans are pushing Obama to nominate John Kerry from Massachusetts for the secretary of state position. This would create an opening for recently defeated Scott Brown to try to regain a senate seat.

    Is it possible that the Republicans are playing petty politics with the secretary of state nomination?

  • JP Chandler, AZ
    Dec. 3, 2012 8:31 a.m.

    @liberal larry: Criticizing Rice's critics for playing politics is fine. Criticizing them for being racist is ridiculous.

  • Hemlock Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 9:16 a.m.

    Good call, Bob. Liberals excoriated Bush for believing intelligence reports before invading Iraq. Now they defend Rice for doing the same thing. Her behavior was much more politically motivated and 2 weeks later she was still giving our misinformation, presumably she was influenced by the coming president election. Liberals ignore this and have resorted to shooting the messenger.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Dec. 3, 2012 9:16 a.m.

    Bob,

    Susan Rice's comments have gotten as much or more coverage than warranted. An investigation is underway and when completed, it will be worthy of media coverage. In the meantime, McCain's personal vendetta/payback (for comments she made against McCain during the 2008 election) and Lindsey Graham's campaign tactics merely reveal them to be bitter partisans. I've lost all respect for them. More and more, McCain reveals why he was not suited for the presidency.

    Republicans are the last people who should be standing in judgement, after the debacle of the Iraq War and 9/11. We could go back and look at statements/testimony regarding Iraq war/ 9-11 events by Republicans and the Bush Administration, including and particularly Condi Rice which are significantly more egregious.

  • JMH Provo, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 9:22 a.m.

    This issue has a a lot of sub-issues. The Administration and its supporters claim that Rice was only stating what the intelligence community gave her as information. Her supporters echo this and say she is unfairly being criticized. But these same people did not accept that explanation when the Bush administration said intelligence told them Iraq had WMD. The Republicans, in the Rice case, say that she already knew, or should have known, that this was an act of terrorism.

    The use of racism as a defense begins to ring a little hollow. It it trotted out every time any person of color is questioned in the political arena and starts to sound like the "little boy that cried wolf." There may be times when it is legitimate but by using it every time it dilutes the legitimacy.

    There is a lot of questions unanswered by the Administration and the media for the most part seems content to ignore these questions. It then falls upon Congress to ask them and attempt to get credible answers.

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 9:24 a.m.

    Mr. Bennett fails to mention that our own Representative Jason Chafetz has boasted that he voted against increased security funding for U.S. embassies.

    And JP, where in the world did you find anything "racist" in Liberal Larry's comment? That sort of hallucinating is one of the primary problems with people on the righthand side of the fence.

  • Kalindra Salt Lake City, Utah
    Dec. 3, 2012 9:44 a.m.

    If McCain was/is so concerned with Rice and what she knew versus what she said, why did he skip the hearing on that to attend a Fox News conference?

    His failure to take the opportunity to get the information he "demands" shows he is more interested in playing politics than in actually addressing the issues and concerns. His claims have lost all validity.

  • Moderate Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 10:02 a.m.

    If Susan Rice is not qualified to be Secretary of State, how is she qualified to be the UN Ambassador?

  • rnoble Pendleton, OR
    Dec. 3, 2012 10:29 a.m.

    I did not realize Susan Rice was black, or young, until I read this article where it was pointed out. I still have great reservations of her as the main man in diplomacy. I know that she is supposed to be the representative of the President, but historically the Secretary of State has also been the public face of the American people and has established the position to have a certain cachet; independent of the President. That is why I have great reservations. I see Susan Rice as a willing dependent of President Obama and unable or unwilling to think for herself and thus a risk to the Nation. She should have questioned the message she iterated, and either become silent or become willing to up-date her statement including admission of wrong information and supplying the correct information.

  • timpClimber Provo, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 10:54 a.m.

    Susan Rice is neither young nor inexperienced but she is an Obama marcher who has never disagreed or questioned her President like Condie Rice did President Bush. Since the Administration will not release the videos of the attack nor acknowledge that Libyan officials were calling it a terrorist attack within 24 hours, why shouldn't we question her veracity? Or remember she was the adviser to Clinton who told him not accept Sudan's offer to turn over Asama to U.S. custody?

  • Pat Sandy, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 11:30 a.m.

    I think Dr Rice is one of the detractions being thrown out there to take our minds off of what really happened during the Benghazi attacks, and what is happening since. I don't think she will be nominated for Sec of State so the perception can be her name was spared to save her reputation. If the confusion and spin doesn't work with Dr Rice, there are plenty more standing in line (Clapper, Panetta, Petraeus, Allen, Carney, Hamm, etc) to protect the king. Deny and obfuscate, until the American people get tired of the criticism and say its time to forgive and forget so we can all just get along.

  • Mike Richards South Jordan, Utah
    Dec. 3, 2012 11:48 a.m.

    Look at how many posters blindly accept whatever the administration says. Look at how many blindly believe that Ms. Rice was "misinformed" and that she was blameless, no matter what she said.

    WHO is responsible? It must be Bush. He must have sneaked in the Whitehouse and turned the channel to Howdy Dowdy when that attack took place. He must have snookered Obama again. His ghost will roam the halls of the White House as long as Obama can pass the blame.

    It's time that Obama became a man and stopped blaming others. It's time that he stopped throwing women under the bus to save himself. He sat in the same situation room as Hillary Clinton, yet he allowed her to take full responsibility for the attack. He stood before the United Nations and told the world that the "video" was the cause of the attack - after he had seen with his own eyes the attack as it was carried out - for seven hours.

    Ms. Rice has disqualified herself for high office. Everyone who is involved has disqualified themselves for high office.

    We have a government that does nothing but point fingers - and some posters accept that.

  • killpack Sandy, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 12:00 p.m.

    The media have failed miserably with Benghazi, and these failings are totally disgraceful. When George W. Bush was wrong about WMD in Iraq, he was crucified by this same media. Now, they have fallen deathly silent. Two Navy SEALs are dead. That should absolutely NEVER EVER happen without some kind of reason. And that reason had better be truthful. Spontaneous riots did NOT cause the deaths of these brave men. Something else did. There should be full disclosure of what happened. Their families deserve that much. If I was still in the military, and two people died under my watch, and my only response was 'well, a spontaneous movie-inspired mob killed your son,' I would be court-martialled and thrown in the brig to rot for dereliction. Why shouldn't the upper crust of leadership be held to the same standard that rank and file members of the armed services subject themselves?

  • Eric Samuelsen Provo, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 12:33 p.m.

    She repeated talking points given her by the intelligence community. Period. She is not a CIA analyst and she had not part in whatever failures in security resulted in this tragedy. I know the Right is obsessed with Benghazi, but this is preposterous. She's qualified to be Secretary of State, if the President decides to nominate her.
    I haven't seen the allegations of racism to which Senator Bennett refers. If such allegations are part of the conversation, then I do agree that they're inappropriate.

  • The Skeptical Chymist SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 12:51 p.m.

    It seems to me that Condoleeza Rice had far more significant issues at the time when she was confirmed as Secretary of State than does Susan Rice. As National Security Advisor, Condi failed to act when warned that al-Qaeda was planning to attack inside the United States. She and the entire Bush White House were so focused on Iraq that they thought al-Qaeda was small potatoes, despite being advised repeatedly that al-Qaeda was a major threat. She completely failed to protect the U.S. at that time. I guarantee that if the 9-11 tragedy had happened under a Democratic president, no Republican senators would have voted to confirm her as Secretary of State. Condi also ignored specific intelligence when she pushed for an attack on Iraq, stating that we couldn't wait for a smoking gun, that the smoking gun could be a mushroom cloud. Yet she was confirmed, 85-13, with bipartisan support.

    Hypocrisy, thy name is Republicans.

  • killpack Sandy, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 1:39 p.m.

    @Eric Samuelsen

    "She repeated talking points given her by the intelligence community. Period. She is not a CIA analyst and she had not part in whatever failures in security resulted in this tragedy."

    First of all, what evidence do you have that the intelligence community told Susan Rice to say what she said? Just because she said that's what they told her? I'm not buying it. The intelligence community is DENYING any claim that they told anyone that this was a movie-inspired incident. They should deny it; that would be incredibly embarrassing if you call yourself an intelligence expert and failed to recognize this incident for what it was, that is a well planned, well coordinated attack, not a spontaneous one. Second, if Susan Rice relied such horribly bad intel, she is, herself, incompetent and should be excluded from consideration for advancement in the State Department.

  • Fitness Freak Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 2:16 p.m.

    "media are failing"?

    Not really, they are doing what they have been doing since '07. Covering up or ignoring entirely, problems within the Obama administration.

  • christoph Brigham City, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 2:54 p.m.

    McCain and Kerry should follow Bob Dole's example, you lose the presidency, you leave the Senate (and hopefully the nations capital); like Mr. Romney has done taking up residence in California.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    Dec. 3, 2012 2:57 p.m.

    The questions about Susan Rice’s handling of the Benghazi attack are questions that need to be asked. So far, I've seen no evidence that would disqualify her from being Secretary of State. And yet before it's certain that Obama even intends to nominate Rice, her Republican detractors are gearing up for an all out fight. What's this noise all about?

    Robert Bennett may think the news media is falling down but to me it looks more like the GOP is getting frustrated that the news media is not being swayed to get on board with them.

  • One of a Few Layton, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 3:26 p.m.

    I think Faux News has been providing extensive coverage in favor of the GOP, on this topic. So what the Senator really means and what the GOP means when they call out the media, is that the media is not in lock step with the views expressed by the GOP and Faux News. If Faux news appeals to you, then you are probably getting all the coverage you need on this issue. If Faux News doesn't appeal to you, you are seeking your news from other sources that do appeal to you. So I guess where I am getting with this is that free market principles apply, the very principles the hypocritical GOP vaunts when ever a regulation discussion is broached. The Commie left laughs with John Stewart at Faux news but it doesn't demand that Faux News change its operations paradigm. So, thanks to a wonderful network of communication resources, we literally have access to all the news that is fit to print and then some. What the Senator is really complaining about it is that public opinion has not been swayed to the GOP's POV on Susan Rice.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Dec. 3, 2012 3:59 p.m.

    "Look at how many posters blindly accept whatever the administration says."

    could just as easily read

    "Look at how many posters blindly attack whatever the administration says."

    Good grief.... it hours after the attack that those who wish to play politics jumped on this as some kind of coverup. There is no doubt Rice's information was wrong. That is not in debate. Someone then claimed this was just like Bush's blunder -- where Colin Powell made false claims. The difference, one resulted in the deaths of over 100,000 people and over a Trillion dollars of debt - the other - some momentary misinformation, embossment, and then a correction.

    Hardly the same scale or results. Most sane Republicans have moved on, acknowledging mistakes were made, but kept in perspective. A handful of media craving and almost irrelevant senators on the other hand are trying to us this to keep their names in the headlines - to the point of missing their own committee meetings on the incident.

    Lets keep this in perspective.

  • killpack Sandy, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 4:15 p.m.

    @One of a Few

    "I think Faux News has been providing extensive coverage in favor of the GOP, on this topic."

    Lol. ANY coverage of Benghazi makes the Obama Administration look bad. I guess that favors the GOP, indirectly. However, there is absolutely no way to spin the Benghazi incident positively for President Obama and his staff. Perhaps that is why only Fox News is reporting on it. The other media outlets do not want The President to look bad, and Benghazi makes The President look really, really bad. So, they don't talk about it.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    Dec. 3, 2012 4:51 p.m.

    killpack,

    ".....there is absolutely no way to spin the Benghazi incident positively for President Obama and his staff....."
    ____________________

    Just about everyone agrees that the aftermath was mismanaged by the Administration. I just believe that overall it's been blown out of proportion by the President's critics to gain some partisan advantage. That's where I disagree with Bennett. He thinks the press is not doing its job and I think the press is being more responsible than the President's GOP critics.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    Dec. 3, 2012 5:36 p.m.

    David Ignatius has several well-written articles regarding the Benghazi attack. From his Oct 19 article:

    “Talking points” prepared by the CIA on Sept. 15, the same day that Rice taped three television appearances, support her description of the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. Consulate as a reaction to Arab anger about an anti-Muslim video prepared in the United States. According to the CIA account, “The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the U.S. Consulate and subsequently its annex. There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations."

    The CIA document went on: “This assessment may change as additional information is collected and analyzed and as currently available information continues to be evaluated.” This may sound like self-protective boilerplate, but it reflects the analysts’ genuine problem interpreting fragments of intercepted conversation, video surveillance and source reports."

    Ignatius' recent column about Susan Rice, in the Washington Post, is also worth reading.

  • Moderate Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 3, 2012 7:50 p.m.

    Pat says "I think Dr Rice is one of the detractions being thrown out there to take our minds off of what really happened during the Benghazi attacks"
    That statement is good comedy. "being thrown out there" Too funny.
    Dr Rice is being dragged out there by the Republicans. THEY decided to make Dr Rice a target of baseless attacks. John McCain trying to stay relevant. Nothing more.

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 4, 2012 10:30 a.m.

    It is truly fascinating how far myopic Obama supporters are willing to go to blind themselves to reality. The more obvious it becomes that the administration knew that Benghazi was a terrorist attack at the time that it happened (even watching on video drone) - the more the apologists squirm to deny.

    Obama had relied on taking out Bin Laden as evidence of his foreign policy prowess - the prospect of a persistent Al Qaeda were politically toxic and required doing ANYTHING to obfuscate the truth. The reality of terrorism and the non-event of the video protests was apparently well known by the administration by the time Rice went on the Sunday show tour (which Hillary declined to do) therefore one can only conclude that Rice was lying, uniformed or merely a tool. Efforts to portray criticisms of that behavior as being racist or sexist are consistent with the Obama administration/campaign's general reliance on race, gender and class warfare as a basis of their passive/aggressive power. It merely proves the level of this administrations viciousness and lack of a moral floor.

  • killpack Sandy, UT
    Dec. 4, 2012 10:38 a.m.

    @Craig Clark

    I agree that much of the criticism is partisan. And I'll admit that I am a staunch opponent of Barack Obama. I think he is a horrible President otherwise. However, I also don't think that diminishes just how horrible the Benghazi incident really is. Two Navy SEALs and an ambassador are dead. When that happens, I don't think you can blow things out of proportion. The seriousness of such an incident cannot be overstated.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Dec. 4, 2012 12:21 p.m.

    I think it's possible to look at Benghazi without a partisan lens. I've spoken out when I've disagreed with the GOP. I've spoken out on the rare occasion I've admired the way Obama has handled something.

    I don't see how you justify, excuse or sweep under the rug this Benghazi travesty. Ignoring danger signs before the incident, ignoring pleas for more security beforehand and pleas for help during the incident, lying about the incident, lying about lying about the incident. If the brave navy seals hadn't disregarded orders to stand down there would have likely been many more dead. Utterly shameful. And it IS shameful the mainstream media so uninterested.

  • Craig Clark Boulder, CO
    Dec. 4, 2012 1:08 p.m.

    Conter Intelligence,

    "....Efforts to portray criticisms of that behavior as being racist or sexist are consistent with the Obama administration/campaign's general reliance on race, gender and class warfare as a basis of their passive/aggressive power....."
    ______________________________

    If you know who’s doing this, by all means please identify them by name. Robert Bennett didn’t bother to do that in his article but he sure has stirred up some readers in here with wild broadsides fired at unnamed parties. If you know who on my side is making such charges of racism and sexism, please share the info with me. Otherwise, I’ll conclude that you and Robert Bennett are the ones who are making spurious charges.

  • Owen Heber City, UT
    Dec. 4, 2012 4:42 p.m.

    SoCalChris: Ignoring danger signs before the incident, ignoring pleas for more security beforehand and pleas for help during the incident, lying about the incident, lying about lying about the incident.

    Uh ...Where has all this outrage been for the last decade?
    "Secretary Rice failed to take a July 2001 warning (Osama bin Laden intends to launch terrorist attacks inside the United States) seriously when it was delivered at a White House meeting by Tenet, Cofer Black, then the agency's chief of top counterterrorism, and a third CIA official ..."

    Pure politics now.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Dec. 4, 2012 7:35 p.m.

    Owen,

    If Bush had had 7 hours notice that planes were headed for the Twin Towers and just sat there and watched the planes crash into the buildings in real time and didn't lift a finger to stop it, yeah -- there would be outrage. I doubt a generic warning that Bin Laden was planning another attack was news to anybody at the time, but prior to 9-11 we didn't have the political will to do what needed to be done -- go after Al Qaeda, Patriot Act, etc.

    After the earlier attacks in Benghazi we should have pulled out like the British or at least beefed up security as they had been begging for. It was a disaster waiting to happen and when it did happen it looks like little if anything was done to help Americans in distress.

    But if you see the world as Obama - good, Bush - bad, I guess you just see outrage over Benghazi as all politics.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Dec. 4, 2012 7:56 p.m.

    SoCalChris... do you have any idea how many "possible threats" the government gets daily, most of which never come to anything. Point is Bush and his administration had weeks notice, not 7 hours. And exactly what response did you expect the administration to do in that time frame. Send troops into a foreign area, with no plan, no idea who these people were what their capabilities were? What, you just wanted a bigger body bag count so we can pretend we are John Wayne riding over the hill to save the day.

    Fortunately the US military leaders have learned from these kind of unplanned and unprepared type of "rescues" in both Iran, Iraq and Somalia. You want to play loose with our militaries lives - have at it. But these generals take their jobs a tad more responsibly. Maybe in the books and movies you watch, there is a standby team of Seals ready to swoop in to any theater at anytime.... but in the real world.... that doesn't exist.

  • Pat Sandy, UT
    Dec. 4, 2012 8:26 p.m.

    I think the questions are still quite simple. For me it is who knew what (specifically the President, Sec of State, Sec of Defense, CIA Director, UN Ambassador, etc) and more importantly, when did they know it? The answers thus far (if any there be) seem to me quite implausible. Deny and distract. The best this Administration can hope for is that the American people will get tired of all the denials and distractions and Benghazi will become old news. Deny and distract. It took several months for the truth regarding Watergate to be known.

  • Mike in Cedar City Cedar City, Utah
    Dec. 4, 2012 9:03 p.m.

    Once again the DMN is taking its ideas from Fox News. Can't you people think for yourselves?

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    Dec. 4, 2012 11:04 p.m.

    Well Utah Blue Devil, we have these things called airplanes now (taking a page out of Obama's debate book). I'm not a military expert, and I doubt you are either, but I have a feeling any kind of response would have made a difference. The seals lit up that mortar, that ultimately killed them, for a reason -- they thought.

    How in the world did Bush have weeks notice of 9-11? (Maybe YOU'RE watching and reading the wrong things.)

    I've seen your posts for a while and you seem like a thoughtful guy. I'm puzzled that you're not disturbed by the absolute baloney we were told for so long or about the fact that we didn't seem to pay as much attention to the safety of our citizens as the British did. Everything about Benghazi stinks.

  • a bit of reality Shawnee Mission, KS
    Dec. 5, 2012 8:36 a.m.

    What an ironic editorial. If Bennett wants to criticize the media for being misleading, he shouldn't mislead the public by saying the U.S. embassy in Benghazi was attacked. *The U.S. does NOT have an embassy in Benghazi.* The embassy of the U.S. in Libya is in Tripoli, not Benghazi. It was the consulate office in Benghazi that was attacked.

    Does Bennett not know this, or was he being intentionally misleading?

  • Counter Intelligence Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 5, 2012 1:25 p.m.

    @Craig Clark

    "If you know who’s doing this, by all means please identify them by name"

    Nov.14: Obama states that the ONLY reason anyone could possibly have to question Rice is to "besmirch" her reputation

    Nov. 16: Rep. Maria Fudge, D-Ohio, Rep Gwen Moore, D-Wis., Rep Elanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., and NINE other House members hold news conference to claim that opposition to Rice was both racist and sexist

    Nov. 21: Rep. Jame Clyburg D-S.C. states on national TV that criticisms of Rice are based on racism and sexism

    Nov.19: Former top Newsweek journalist and current MSNBC.com editor Richard Wolffe claimed a "witch hunt going on the right about these people of color ... Eric Holder, Valerie Jarrett, now Susan Rice."

    Nov. 29: MSNBC Toure' Nesblett defined McCain as one of “old, white establishment folks” who only oppose Rice because he is "bitter" but excuses himself with "I'll leave it to you to decide how much of the tarring of Rice as incompetent and unqualified is about the myth of black inferiority and female inferiority,"

    Anyone actually reading diverse news sources would find this and more