Asked about Senator Reid’s brutal letter to him in which Reid denied McCain’s calls to head a special committee to investigate Benghazi, McCain said at a press conference at the Halifax International Security Forum, “I’m concerned about four Americans who died. Their families need to know the circumstances, why it happened, how it happened, and where responsibility lies. That’s all. That’s all that we’re seeking. We’re not seeing a confrontation with anyone. We’re not trying to quote ‘take on anyone.’”
McCain claims that he knew better than the entire intelligence community (also known in Republican circles as “the administration” now) and thus he is not taking back his criticism of Susan Rice. The Senator said, “No, because I knew it was a terrorist attack from the beginning. People don’t go to spontaneous demonstrations with mortars and RPGs.”
To date, no one has asked McCain how he can “know” with such certainty what happened in Benghazi when he was not there, and when he clearly did not read the intelligence reports sent to him that Rice based her comments on, or attend the briefing in which he could have more fully informed himself.
In McCain world, it was simple; he knew because there were mortars and RPGs there. And yet, it was not so simple. Shocking, I know. There were actually two attacks, and the intelligence community seems to think at this point that they may have been two separate attacks – perhaps one spontaneous and one planned or some combo thereof. Furthermore, Petraeus suggested that Rice’s talking points were the unclassified version of what happened, something McCain should have grasped for obvious reasons since he claims to be an expert at national security. Perhaps he expected us to send a cable to the suspects on day one.
But never mind McCain’s big talk on RPGs (you have to feel for the guy, clinging to his days as The Military Guy), what is really important here is that he now says he is not seeking a confrontation with anyone.
From lies and calling for a Watergate-esque investigation to “We’re not trying to quote ‘take on anyone,’” McCain is backpedaling. Not so fast, Senator.
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