Select Committee on Benghazi Chairman Trey Gowdy says that “we are left with more questions than answers” after Hillary Clinton’s press conference. Well, yes. For all her years at State Hillary used an intricate personal email system, with a gazillion addresses, for government business. She had her own private server, allegedly located at her Chappaqua residence.
Gowdy tells us that Hillary’s undisclosed emails may contain information about “the Benghazi terrorist attacks that took the lives of our four brave fellow citizens” and that he intends to call her to testify before his committee “at least twice.”
I have an uneasy feeling that what we will see at these hearings is a continuing dog and pony show where folks on the Committee pretend to ask questions and Hillary pretends to answer them. In the end, we won’t be any further ahead. But we will have gone through the motions.
Remember how shocked we were when Mitt Romney declined to question Obama about Benghazi during the 2012 presidential debates? First Obama was asked about the matter and he said he took responsibility for what happened, that the buck stopped with him. Then it was Mitt’s turn and, looking furtive and uncomfortable, he rambled, “I—I think the president just said correctly that—that the buck does stop at his desk and—and he takes responsibility for—for that—for that—the failure in providing those security resources, and those terrible things may well happen from time to time.”
After that, nothing really happened. Feet were shuffled, but nothing really moved forward.
Then in March 2013, thanks to hacker Marcel-Lehel Lazar—who called himself Guccifer—we learned that Hillary Clinton had been using a personal email address for official business. And then, a whole year later, in May 2014, Boehner appointed Gowdy to lead his Select Committee on Benghazi. That’s nearly a year ago. And what has happened during that time? Nothing!
All that time, nobody, including Gowdy and his Select Committee, exhibited any curiosity about Hillary’s penchant for using non-official, non-secure email addresses. No one asked her to hand over the emails she has been photographed time and again tapping out on her Blackberry.
Another year has gone by, and finally all of Washington is buzzing about Hillary’s secret email addresses. And Trey Gowdy emerges from his slumbers and announces that these emails are of such import that his committee will want to interview Hillary at least twice.
All of this shuffling of feet has makes me unquiet. How do we explain the Republicans’ lethargy in going after Hillary? Heck, Mitt Romney blew his chance to become President of the United States rather than going after Obama on this issue.
Let me put forth a theory. Whatever was happening in Benghazi in 2012—the Republicans were in on it. Whoever is responsible for the death of “our four brave fellow citizens,” some of them were Republicans. Important ones.
Were we engaged in running Libyan weapons to the Syrian rebels who are now destroying that country? That’s what the rumor mill was telling us two years ago. Where did the American Humvees, armored cars, military flatbed trucks, and artillery recently paraded by ISIS through Mosul actually come from?
I don’t think we are going to learn the answers to any of these questions—or to the mystery of what happened in Benghazi—until an investigation is undertaken by someone with no political ties to any political party. In his statement, Gowdy suggests that Hillary “turn her server over to a neutral, detached third-party arbiter who can determine which documents should be public and which should remain private.” We should insist on that.
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