Lance Armstrong, Tommy Vietor, and Benghazi
Lance Armstrong is a disgraced cycling super-doper who proclaimed his innocence until it was clear he couldn’t keep up the game in the face of a landslide of proof to the contrary.
Tommy Vietor is the spokesman for the National Security Council and he’s proclaiming the innocence of the White House with regard to the Administration’s security and foreign policy debacle in Benghazi:
… [Vietor] has said that despite some claims, there was no real-time video of the attack being watched in the Situation Room.
OK, let’s introduce the legal concept of quibbling. Vietor was not under oath and beyond that, his paraphrased statement doesn’t mean the real-time video wasn’t available, just that it wasn’t being watched (or that it wasn’t being watched specifically in the Situation Room). Was said video being watched at the State Department? In the Pentagon? In any other of the myriad government watch, operations, and intelligence centers?
As for recent stories suggesting otherwise, Vietor says, “the White House didn’t deny any requests for assistance. Period. Moreover, what the entire government did – the White House, State Department, Intelligence Community, Department of Defense included – was to work to mobilize all available assets and move them into the region as quickly as possible. That’s what the President ordered the Secretary of Defense and Chairman to do the first time he was briefed about these issues. Many of those assets were later used to reinforce embassies in places like Yemen, Libya and Egypt.”
Again, let us deconstruct the not-under-oath Vietor statement. First, perhaps someone in the Administration (far bigger than the White House) kept the request from being elevated to the White House (which is a location and only a vague organizational description).
Next, what’s the point “to mobilize all available assets and move them into the region as quickly as possible” if no assistance has been requested or none is anticipated? And if assets are available, what’s the point in avoiding discussion on whether or not they should be employed?
Conventional wisdom offers it isn’t the crime, it’s the cover up. Regarding Mr. Obama’s Benghazi problem, it’ll be the crime and the cover up.
And as for Lance Armstrong? Like Tommy Vietor, his public statements were not given while under oath.