Skip to main content

Sen. John McCain was so busy Wednesday attacking Susan Rice over statements she made in the aftermath of the murderous attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that he skipped an official briefing on the attack. While he was in high dudgeon before the cameras together with Sen. Lindsey Graham and Sen. Kelly Ayotte making threats to filibuster the rumored nomination of Rice to replace Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and calling for a select investigative committee to look into the matter, the classified, closed-door briefing was being held by a Senate committee on which he sits.

When Sen. Joe Lieberman emerged from that two-hour briefing of the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, he said there was no need for a select investigative committee. Another member of the Homeland committee, Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, said in an interview:

“I do not see the benefit of creating a brand new committee when we already have the Senate’s chief oversight committee, plus the Intelligence Committee, examining this very important matter.”
Obviously, for McCain, the benefit might be the possibility he could be the embittered, fist-pounding star of any select committee investigation, a role he would have to cede to another under the current arrangement. If he could pummel Rice over what he and others have unconvincingly claimed to be her misleading statements in the aftermath of the Benghazi attack, it would apparently give him some sort of twisted pleasure. But it would serve the nation exactly how?

As Matt Lauer notes in his interview in the video clip above, McCain had no objections to approving another Rice as secretary of state despite her role in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq. On Sept. 8, 2002, while the Bush administration was ginning up support for the invasion, Condoleeza Rice, then the president's national security adviser, was on CNN having an interview with Wolf Blitzer:

We do know that [Saddam Hussein] is actively pursuing a nuclear weapon. We do know that there have been shipments going into Iran, for instance—into Iraq, for instance, of aluminum tubes that really are only suited to—high-quality aluminum tools that are only really suited for nuclear weapons programs, centrifuge programs.[...]

The problem here is that there will always be some uncertainty about how quickly Saddam can acquire nuclear weapons. But we don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.

The problem with those statements is that it was known that the aluminum tubes were not suited for making nuclear weapons or anything nuclear. Moreover, contrary to McCain's claims about all the world's intelligence services saying Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, that country was not close to having the weapon that would create a mushroom cloud. The administration knew this because French intelligence had so informed it and the State Department and CIA's own investigations had done so as well.

Specifically, it was known that it was highly dubious that Iraq had obtained from Niger yellowcake—processed uranium ore that provides the fissile material for a bomb. Former ambassador to Iraq Joe Wilson had visited Niger and said no such sale. French intelligence had said the same. By the time John McCain was voting for Condi Rice to replace Colin Powell as secretary of state, this story was well known, including the fact that the documents relating to Niger's purported sale of yellowcake were clumsy forgeries.

Nothing Susan Rice has said about Benghazi comes within a country mile of what Condi Rice said a decade ago. But to the bitter, grandstanding McCain, that apparently makes no difference.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 08:19 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Bob Johnson, SME in Seattle, Bill in Portland Maine, Lawdog, mimi, greenbird, byteb, richardak, eeff, rubyr, Sandy on Signal, regis, Delilah, cbythesea, Zinman, missLotus, 88kathy, amsterdam, CoolOnion, itskevin, PeteZerria, navajo, artebella, psnyder, NYC Sophia, American Zapatista, figbash, Lawrence, duncanidaho, kj in missouri, Bulldawg, betson08, inclusiveheart, zerelda, randallt, KayCeSF, lyvwyr101, Sybil Liberty, Sassy, Dirk McQuigley, vcmvo2, ExStr8, eru, LNK, SaraBeth, jimstaro, Inland, Gordon20024, skyounkin, sunbro, coolbreeze, Over the Edge, RJDixon74135, Mother Mags, Doug Goodenough, irishwitch, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, Russgirl, Libby Shaw, SadieSue, el cid, sceptical observer, Timothy J, sea note, One Pissed Off Liberal, FlashfyreSP, Cronesense, Mr K, ColoTim, tjhoneycutt, Mary Mike, suejazz, newpioneer, jedennis, gchaucer2, OIL GUY, Librarianmom, leonard145b, chujb, Empower Ink, MKinTN, ratador, HappyinNM, Marko the Werelynx, Involuntary Exile, tofumagoo, pamelabrown, RandomNonviolence, smartdemmg, pademocrat, mofembot, No Exit, glendaw271, Nica24, Robobagpiper, lostinamerica, bobatkinson, manucpa, Quinagin, winsock, Railfan, MT in Austin, Just Bob, bronxcharlie, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, David PA, Tea and Strumpets, Observerinvancouver, secret38b, Orlaine, 4CasandChlo, appledown, JohnAdams999, SoCalHobbit, laserhaas, SoonerG, rja, Actbriniel, slice, no way lack of brain, Onomastic, annieli, afisher, heather65, jardin32, poorbuster, FarWestGirl, OhioNatureMom, Gamblndan, EquityRoy, marleycat, PorridgeGun, sethtriggs, IllanoyGal, thomask, createpeace, loblolly, enhydra lutris, Wood Dragon, StateOfGrace, MKDAWUSS, Vatexia, cactusgal, jolux, ratcityreprobate, MikeBoyScout, DRo, AmazingBlaise, ChiTownDenny, DEMonrat ankle biter, johnnr2, hulibow, angry marmot, Siri, Eric Nelson, a2nite, Deep Texan, dog in va, mapamp, belinda ridgewood, bewareofme, pittie70, wxorknot, arizonablue, Glen The Plumber, tn mountain girl, Hammerhand, aresea, Icicle68, rigcath, Ishmaelbychoice, MBishop1, thatpj

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site