To the editor,
In politics, we are all aware of deception, lies, spinning the truth, etc., but Mr. Earle, in his most recent letter, distorts the truth by taking a statement made by then Secretary Clinton out of context, or as Mr. Meade refers to it, "paraphrasing." By using these techniques, you don't have to report an accurate account of what was said — you only have to narrate whatever information serves your political interests, no matter how blatantly misleading.
The events that took place in Benghazi, Libya on September 11, 2012 were an American tragedy, ending in the deaths of Ambassador Chris Stevens, Information Officer Sean smith, and Navy Seals Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods.
No one could have imagined, by the end of the evening, how quickly the Republican right would politicize the murder of four Americans. Or how the most basic facts would be twisted and even invented out of the air to manufacture false charges — first to suggest that President Obama was disengaged, or even sympathetic to terror, and then, when that faltered, to begin tarnishing the reputation of Hillary Clinton as she mulled a 2016 presidential bid.
Mr. Earle, in his inimitable way, fails to give us all the facts of Secretary of State Clinton's response to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He conveniently paraphrased her comments to read, "What does it really matter." Her actual response to the question, as to what provoked the attack on the consulate was, "But with all due respect, the fact is that we had four dead Americans. What difference, AT THIS POINT, does it make (referring to the cause of the attack)? IT IS OUR JOB TO FIGURE OUT WHAT HAPPENED AND DO EVERYTHING WE CAN TO PREVENT IT FROM HAPPENING AGAIN." These points made by Clinton, were left out of Earle's letter.
I'm still trying to figure out what Clinton, Obama, Rice, and the State Department were supposed to have hidden or covered-up and why. That they didn't immediately know ahead of time if it was a planned or spontaneous attack? That they didn't know ahead of time there was going to be an attack? That they issued a preliminary report that eventually proved wrong? After all the terrorist attacks on our embassies and the resulting deaths and injuries from them over the last 20 years, the Republicans suddenly decide the current administration is responsible in some way for the deaths in Benghazi. They were perfectly happy to deny requests for increased funding for the State Department and never questioned "security failures" during Republican administrations, but now, especially after losing elections, these "statesmen" need to pin something, anything, on the Obama administration.
Ambassador Stevens was not "butchered", "raped", or "tortured" by members of the mob as claimed by Earle and others, but was alive when brought to a hospital. He bore no external injuries, and died of smoke inhalation from the fire started in the attack on the consulate. Does this diminish his death — certainly not! But exaggerating circumstances of his death for political gain is unconscionable.