"Let me be very clear. I have great respect for Senator McCain and his service to our country, I always have, and I always will," Ms Rice told reporters in her first public comments on the storm.
"I do think that some of the statements he made about me have been unfounded, but I look forward to having the opportunity at the appropriate time to discuss all of this with him," she added.
Ms Rice insisted the comments she made on US talk shows on the Sunday after the deadly attack on the US consulate in Benghazi was based purely on intelligence guidance."As a senior White House diplomat, I agreed to a White House request to appear on the Sunday shows to talk about the full range of national security issues of the day," she said. This included the Benghazi attack and Iran's nuclear facilities.
"When discussing the attacks against our facilities in Benghazi, I relied solely and squarely on the information provided to me by the intelligence community," the ambassador added.
"I made it clear that the information was preliminary and that our investigations would give us the definitive answers," she added.(if you cannot see video below click here)
The bottom line is if Rice was given lies to tell these networks and the American people she should say that. Because she hasn't complained about being duped into lying, one has to assume she was complacent.
To be honest, Susan Rice's Sunday news interview's are the least important element of this Benghazi coverup. More important questions include:
- Why weren't the mission's request for protection ignored especially when you consider the warning and previous attacks?
- Why wasn't help sent during the attack?
- How did this video become a false excuse for the attack?
- Why were we told the video was the impetus for the attack weeks later by President Obama?
- Why did President Obama lie to the UN about the attack?
- Why hasn't anyone in the administration cooperated with the congressional investigation?
For those who wish to decide about Ms. Rice for themselves, below is what Rice said in each of the Sunday interviews which got her in trouble.
ABC’s “This Week”:
MS. RICE: Well, Jake, first of all, it’s important to know that there’s an FBI investigation that has begun and will take some time to be completed. That will tell us with certainty what transpired.
But our current best assessment, based on the information that we have at present, is that, in fact, what this began as, it was a spontaneous — not a premeditated — response to what had transpired in Cairo. In Cairo, as you know, a few hours earlier, there was a violent protest that was undertaken in reaction to this very offensive video that was disseminated.
We believe that folks in Benghazi, a small number of people came to the embassy to — or to the consulate, rather, to replicate the sort of challenge that was posed in Cairo. And then as that unfolded, it seems to have been hijacked, let us say, by some individual clusters of extremists who came with heavier weapons, weapons that as you know in — in the wake of the revolution in Libya are — are quite common and accessible. And it then evolved from there.
CBS’s “Face the Nation”
MS. RICE: So we’ll want to see the results of that [FBI] investigation to draw any definitive conclusions. But based on the best information we have to date, what our assessment is as of the present is in fact what began spontaneously in Benghazi as a reaction to what had transpired some hours earlier in Cairo where, of course, as you know, there was a violent protest outside of our embassy– –sparked by this hateful video. But soon after that spontaneous protest began outside of our consulate in Benghazi, we believe that it looks like extremist elements, individuals, joined in that– in that effort with heavy weapons of the sort that are, unfortunately, readily now available in Libya post-revolution. And that it spun from there into something much, much more violent.
BOB SCHIEFFER: But you do not agree with him that this was something that had been plotted out several months ago?
MS. RICE: We do not– we do not have information at present that leads us to conclude that this was premeditated or preplanned.
MR. SCHIEFFER: Do you agree or disagree with [the previous guest, the president of Libya’s general national congress] that al Qaeda had some part in this?
MS. RICE: Well, we’ll have to find out that out. I mean I think it’s clear that there were extremist elements that joined in and escalated the violence. Whether they were al Qaeda affiliates, whether they were Libyan-based extremists or al Qaeda itself I think is one of the things we’ll have to determine.
Full CBS transcript.
“Fox News Sunday”
CHRIS WALLACE: Let’s talk about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi this week that killed four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens.
The top Libyan official says that the attack on Tuesday was, quote, his words “preplanned”. Al Qaeda says the operation was revenge for our killing a top Al Qaeda leader.
What do we know?
MS. RICE: Well, first of all, Chris, we are obviously investigating this very closely. The FBI has a lead in this investigation. The information, the best information and the best assessment we have today is that in fact this was not a preplanned, premeditated attack. That what happened initially was that it was a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired in Cairo as a consequence of the video. People gathered outside the embassy and then it grew very violent and those with extremist ties joined the fray and came with heavy weapons, which unfortunately are quite common in post-revolutionary Libya and that then spun out of control.
But we don’t see at this point signs this was a coordinated plan, premeditated attack. Obviously, we will wait for the results of the investigation and we don’t want to jump to conclusions before then. But I do think it’s important for the American people to know our best current assessment.
Full Fox transcript.
NBC’s “Meet the Press”
DAVID GREGORY: Well, let’s talk– talk about– well, you talked about this as spontaneous. Can you say definitively that the attacks on– on our consulate in Libya that killed ambassador Stevens and others there security personnel, that was spontaneous, was it a planned attack? Was there a terrorist element to it?
MS. RICE: Well, let us– let me tell you the– the best information we have at present. First of all, there’s an FBI investigation which is ongoing. And we look to that investigation to give us the definitive word as to what transpired. But putting together the best information that we have available to us today our current assessment is that what happened in Benghazi was in fact initially a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired hours before in Cairo, almost a copycat of– of the demonstrations against our facility in Cairo, which were prompted, of course, by the video. What we think then transpired in Benghazi is that opportunistic extremist elements came to the consulate as this was unfolding. They came with heavy weapons which unfortunately are readily available in post revolutionary Libya. And it escalated into a much more violent episode. Obviously, that’s– that’s our best judgment now. We’ll await the results of the investigation. And the president has been very clear–we’ll work with the Libyan authorities to bring those responsible to justice.
Full NBC transcript.
CNN’s “State of the Union”
Ms. RICE: I have been to Libya and walked the streets of Benghazi myself. And despite what we saw in that horrific incident where some mob was hijacked ultimately by a handful of extremists, the United States is extremely popular in Libya and the outpouring of sympathy and support for Ambassador Stevens and his colleagues from the government, from people is evidence of that.
The fact is, Candy, that this is a turbulent time. It’s a time of dramatic change. It’s a change that the United States has backed because we understand that when democracy takes root, when human rights and people’s freedom of expression can be manifested, it may lead to turbulence in the short-term, but over the long-term, that is in the interest of the United States.
The mobs we’ve seen on the outside of these embassies are small minority. They’re the ones who have largely lost in these emerging democratic processes, and just as the people of these countries are not going to allow their lives to be hijacked by a dictator, they’re not going to allow an extremist mob to hijack their future and their freedom,. And we’re going to continue to stand with the vast majority of the populations in these countries.
Full CNN transcript.