New York Times editorial page editor Andrew Rosenthal on Monday brushed aside criticism of the paper’s bombshell weekend report on the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack in Benghazi.
In a blog post published Monday afternoon, Rosenthal was particularly dismissive of some Republican claims that the piece was published as some sort of political cover for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who is considered the Democratic frontrunner for president if she decides to run in 2016.
When asked if he thought the piece was meant to “clear the deck” for Clinton, Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), the chair of the House Intelligence Committee, told Fox News that he found the timing “odd.” Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R-Ga.), also on the House Intelligence Committee, said Monday that the paper was laying the “groundwork” for a Clinton campaign.
Here are Rosenthal’s particularly scathing words for those arguments:
Which brings us to one particularly hilarious theme in the response to the Times investigation. According to Mr. Rogers, the article was intended to “clear the deck” for Mrs. Clinton’s presidential campaign. Rep. Lynn Westmoreland of Georgia, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said today that The Times was “already laying the groundwork” for a Clinton campaign. Other Republicans referred to Mrs. Clinton as our “candidate of choice.”
Since I will have more to say about which candidate we will endorse in 2016 than any other editor at the Times, let me be clear: We have not chosen Mrs. Clinton. We have not chosen anyone. I can also state definitively that there was no editorial/newsroom conspiracy of any kind, because I knew nothing about the Benghazi article until I read it in the paper on Sunday.
The most controversial bit of reporting in David Kirkpatrick’s months-long investigation is that no evidence links al-Qaeda to any role in 2012 attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya.
Instead, the report says that an American-made video, in large part, fuelled the attack. The attack was not well-planned, according to the report, but it also was not a completely spontaneous reaction to the video.
Read the whole post from Rosenthal here >
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