Just more than a day after the White House released 100 pages of emails relating to September’s terrorist attack in Benghazi, it’s clear that ABC’s bombshell report a week ago was misleading.
CBS’ Major Garrett called out Republicans and ABC in a report Thursday that showed the emails in ABC’s report clearly try to downplay the CIA’s role in shaping the talking points and place more emphasis on the State Department.
In particular, the GOP-leaked emails centered on correspondences from National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes and State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland.
Here is what Rhodes wrote in ABC’s report:
“We must make sure that the talking points reflect all agency equities, including those of the State Department, and we don’t want to undermine the FBI investigation.”
The actual email released by the White House differs significantly and places no emphasis on the State Department:
“We need to resolve this in a way that respects all of the relevant equities, particularly the investigation.”
Here is the GOP-leaked version of one of Nuland’s emails:
“The penultimate point is a paragraph talking about all the previous warnings provided by the Agency (CIA) about al-Qaeda’s presence and activities of al-Qaeda.”
The actual version released by the White House, however, makes no mention of al-Qaeda:
“The penultimate point could be abused by members to beat the State Department for not paying attention to Agency warnings.”
This aligns with a CNN report from Jake Tapper on Tuesday, which purported that ABC’s report seemingly invented the notion that members of the State Department wanted their concerns specifically addressed.
The emails released by the White House, however, do show a significant amount of concern on the part of the State Department. Brendan Buck, the spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner, said the emails showed the “political nature” of the State Department’s talking-point changes.
You can watch the full CBS report here:
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