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WASHINGTON – The Obama administration lied when it claimed the Benghazi attack was a demonstration by Muslims upset over an obscure online video portraying Muhammad as a pedophile, Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, told WND after Wednesday’s groundbreaking U.S. House hearing.
“The public is finally hearing that it was very clear from the very first moment that it had nothing to do with a protest or a video, that that was a complete fabrication, created by this administration, not based on any factual submission from anybody in the administration,” Gohmert said. “It was created after the fact.”
WND reported the testimony of three whistleblowers who were present in Libya during the terror attacks. They alleged the Obama administration failed to bring in military resources to save Ambassador Christopher Stevens and the other three Americans killed in the attack.
Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., said House Republicans are trying to get the basic information to lay groundwork for more hearings.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, told WND the hearings “were very revealing for new information” and that “even the Democrats are now agreeing we need to hear from more witnesses.”
“This is the first time we’re hearing the inside information about what actually happened in Benghazi,” Bachmann said.
She added that the investigation so far “failed to question the right people, and the conclusions are not conclusions that can yield any significant results.”
“We’re only getting started,” she said.
On Dec. 20, 2012, the State Department’s Accountability and Review Board cleared the federal government of responsibility for the deaths of the four Americans in Benghazi. However, Bachmann said new information “has created the question of a dereliction of duty, and we need to hear from the White House.”
Bachmann attacked the administration’s narrative that the attack was sparked by an anti-Islamic video on YouTube.
“The White House and the State Department knew almost immediately that this was an attack,” she said.
Bachmann said the new testimony “counters the narrative that came out of the White House, and that raises more questions.”
“Specifically, where was the president?” she asked. “The president is never mentioned in any of these scenarios. No one knows. There is no evidence yet that the secretary of state requested any help. There is no information to suggest the president requested any military help.”
Why, for example, were Americans in the line of fire abandoned for eight hours? she asked, and why did Obama “fail to send them the aid they requested.”
Speaking to WND, Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif., who attended the hearing, asked, “If the president is honest, why did he refuse to deploy the military?”
Democrats, meanwhile, insist the nation should move on, because there’s nothing to learn.
Rep. Matt Cartwright, D-Pa., dismissed the significance of the hearing, saying he “expected a real bombshell.”
He said he “literally sat on the edge of my seat waiting for the bombshells to come out, and [that] didn’t happen, literally there was no news today, there was nothing today that we didn’t already know about.”
Additionally, ranking member and chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., downplayed the events by telling the whistleblowers, “Death is a part of life, so often we have to find a way to make life a part of death.”
Bachmann, however, pointed out, “There have been nine hearings, but for the first time we’re hearing from witnesses on the ground. Why does it take nine hearings to actually get someone who knows something?”
Gohmert said the nation now is facing a horrible precedent.
“It is extremely problematic for our nation – for people see us as having the strongest military in the world – for what has been coming out from this administration and this hearing. Basically this administration is telling the world, you can attack us and we cannot get a plane there for 20 hours.”
The congressman also pointed to a discrepancy in the administration’s narrative about the delays in getting help to the Americans under attack.
Obama’s initial actions, he said, are “incredibly embarrassing,” since “the president of Libya knew it was not based on a video.” Gohmert said that when U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice went on the five major Sunday talk shows to say that the attacks were based on the YouTube video, she “basically called the president of Libya a liar.”
Gohmert suspects the Obama administration’s motivation in the cover-up was “to not let the voters know before November that their foreign policy had failed.”
Obama had been campaigning on the premise that al-Qaida was defeated and in full retreat. A targeted attack on a U.S. operation on the significant date of 9/11, therefore, would have undermined that political claim.
In addition to throwing allies under the bus, Bachmann asserts that “it is the mid-level people who are getting the blame for the decisions of the leadership.”
She said the fallout will be “a severe problem for Hillary Clinton and a severe problem for the president.”
Suspicions surrounding the administration’s actions were amplified during the hearing when Greg Hicks, the No. 2 person in Libya when the Sept. 11, 2012, attack took place, testified under questioning from Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, that he was told to “not allow himself to be interviewed by a congressional delegation, led by Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz, as to what he knew about the attack.”
Meanwhile, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., asked, “The question is: Why would they do a cover-up? What are they covering up?
“You know, a week before the ambassador was killed in Libya, a ship left Libya and docked in Turkey,” he told WND. “[T]he captain of that ship said there were arms on board and that he actually witnessed the rebels taking the arms and disputing over who got what.”