Security Threat Investigation Delayed to Protect Obama?

While the Petraeus/Broadwell affair makes for lurid reading, it tends, by accident or design, to obscure the larger picture of the story both the mainstream media the Obama administration have been eager to avoid: the murder of four Americans in Benghazi. The major inconsistencies in the administration’s story remain unreconciled, yet we now have one more to add to the list: we are supposed to believe that Eric Holder was aware of this affair as early as last summer, but that intel guidelines developed during the Bush administration precluded Holder from notifying the White House or congressional intelligence committees about it. Scrutiny of a particular timeline says otherwise.

First, the guidelines. According to one source developed by Fox News, “it is long-standing FBI policy for the FBI not to brief Congress or the White House in the middle of a criminal probe that does not involve a security threat.” Fox continues: “The law states that intelligence officials ‘shall’ notify the congressional intelligence committees of  ‘all intelligence activities.’ It could be argued that this didn’t rise to such a level, technically. After all, Fox News confirms that when mistress Paula Broadwell’s second and final interview with the FBI was conducted the Friday before the election, they were able to formally conclude no crimes had been committed…Further, according to the Wall Street Journal, a 2007 memo from then-Attorney General Michael Mukasey said Justice employees were not supposed to tell the White House or Congress about pending criminal investigations.”

Note the aforementioned time of Broadwell’s “second and final interview with the FBI.” The Friday before the national election was November 2, and the FBI ostensibly concluded that nothing Broadwell told them constituted either a crime, or was in any way related to “intelligence activities.”

Yet on October 26, exactly one week before that interview, Paula Broadwell gave a speech about her biography of Petraeus at the University of Denver. “Now, I don’t know if a lot of you have heard this but the CIA annex had actually taken a couple of Libyan militia members prisoner, and they think that the attack on the consulate was an effort to try get these prisoners back, so that’s still being vetted,” Broadwell said in response to a question posed by an audience member after her speech. Broadwell also confirmed that the Fox report claiming the CIA chain of command told CIA operators twice to “stand down” during the attack on the U.S. consulate (and subsequent attack on the CIA annex approximately four hours later) constituted “insightful information.”

How did she know about that information? Far more importantly, how could anyone who interviewed her either claim to be completely unaware of a public speech she gave at a major university, or be aware of it and yet still determine that her dissemination of such information did not constitute anything resembling a “security threat” and/or “intelligence activities”?

Broadwell certainly wasn’t one of Fox’s sources. A story the news outlet ran Monday confirms this. “Biographer Paula Broadwell could be facing questions about whether she revealed classified information about the Libya attack that she was privy to due to her relationship with then-CIA Director David Petraeus,” the opening paragraph states. Yet even more damning for Broadwell, Fox not only confirmed her contention that there were Libyan militiamen being held, and that their imprisonment may have been a motive for the attack, but expanded upon it. They reported that “multiple intelligence sources who have served in Benghazi” revealed that “prisoners from additional countries in Africa and the Middle East were brought to this location.”

Writing for the Washington Times, security policy expert Frank Gaffney illuminates the implications. If Benghazi were being “used to detain and interrogate jihadists from around the region,” it would seemingly violate President Obama’s 2009 executive order eliminating CIA authority to engage in such activities. “Team Obama would have had plenty of reason to worry about the damage Gen. Petraeus could do to its hopes for reelection,” Gaffney concludes.

The story gets even more intriguing. On Sunday, the New York Times acknowledged that when F.B.I. agents first interviewed Ms. Broadwell during the week of Oct. 21, she admitted to the affair and “voluntarily gave the agency her computer,” on which “agents discovered several classified documents.” Both she and Petraeus denied he had given them to her. Politico reports that Broadwell “told an audience this summer that she routinely had access to classified information while researching a book on Petraeus’s work as the commanding general in Afghanistan.” And yesterday, it was revealed that FBI agents spent four hours Monday night searching Broadwell’s family home in Charlotte, NC. They confiscated a half-dozen file boxes, a Dell PC, an iMac, a briefcase and a printer.

Once again, does any of this sound like something the FBI should have defined as “a criminal probe that does not involve a security threat,” seemingly for the purpose of keeping congressional intelligence committees, the White House and/or Congress completely in the dark?

Like other aspects of the Benghazi story, irreconcilable inconsistencies have been disseminated. On November 11, Fox reported that White House Counterterrorism Advisor John Brennan was aware of the Petraeus/Broadwell affair “as early as the summer of 2011.” Yet the Washington Post, New York Times and Wall Street Journal are reporting that the FBI told only Attorney General Holder and a small number of his subordinates “last summer.” Furthermore, the Journal reported yesterday that “authorities were able to eventually rule out a security breach,” even as they noted an FBI spokesman “declined to say” why they were searching Broadwell’s house.

Yet one of the bigger twists in this story was aired on Monday’s “CBS This Morning.” Reporter Sharyl Attkisson revealed that “General Petraeus visited Libya at the end of October, and called several members of Congress the week before he resigned, saying that surveillance video of the Benghazi attack supports an element of spontaneity, as the administration first claimed.”

Petraeus resigned on November 9, long after the “spontaneous uprising” story had been thoroughly debunked. He pushed the same story on September 14, in a Congressional briefing, when no one knew any better, but now that it has been revealed to be a lie and that the CIA itself had immediate information that it was a terrorist attack, why continue the fiction?

More importantly, if Petraeus is apparently lying about this, how can the FBI be so positive he wasn’t lying about giving Broadwell access to classified information?

Former Chief Counsel for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and former Deputy Assistant Attorney General, U.S. Department of Justice Victoria Toensing cuts through the fog of deceit being perpetrated here. “Something is rotten in Benghazi-Petraeus. But we cannot find the rot in these two tragedies because the information is classified and the administration remains silent at the pleasure of the press,” she writes.

Former U.S. ambassador to the U.N. John Bolton is equally blunt. “The idea that the White House didn’t learn of this potential problem until Election Day, I just find incomprehensible. Did the attorney general sit on this information for two months?” he asked.

Until David Petraeus is compelled to testify, we may never know. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, is seemingly determined to make that happen, saying the former four-star General “will likely” be called to do so. Feinstein said congressional leaders would also question FBI officials about why they weren’t briefed on the inquiry that triggered Petraeus’s resignation.

An unnamed federal law enforcement official reiterated the “guideline” excuse. “It was an ongoing criminal investigation,” the official said. “There are intelligence issues that, if they become matters of national security, they are shared. You don’t brief (administration and congressional officials) if they’re only concerns about an intelligence issue.”

How such high-level potential security leaks wouldn’t be considered a “concern” should be one of the first issues addressed during upcoming congressional hearings.

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  • boon doggle

    Perhaps the annex was a kind of brainwashing facility, like in that film which I can't remember the name of. So the captured jihadist gets put through a reorientation program, issued with new papers, and sent off to fight for global jihad on an American ticket, in Syria or Yemen, now thoroughly transformed, and never able to turn his guns back on the Stars and Stripes again. That might have annoyed the local militias. The good general was the cerebral type, creating a counter insurgency program that starts in the mind would appeal. Sounds really farfetched, I grant you, and I'd pinch myself and revert to everyday chicago gun running and mercenary trafficking, but who knows? Would explain why all of them keep hitting the dry ice pedal. Can u imagine how the human rights drones would react to such a heinous development, involving their poster boy? And perhaps the word the general was looking for was 'unexpected', not 'spontaneous'? He has form when it comes to buying off militias. They were all caught flat footed, and in his case, pants down. Opens up all sorts of possibilities, but do you guys really want Biden in the top seat? You can't get rid of them all, can you? A snake with its cunning might be a better bet than a common buffoon. On the other hand, why hold back? Maybe this can be the thin end of the wedge, and the whole rotten edifice will come crashing down. But please, no more Mitster. By the end, his promises on the economy were simply incredible.

    • mcwrath

      A buffoon at least could be directed to act in the best intrests of America and her allies while the the snake in the grass will proceed to act against. ( the treachery that seems to underly this scandal skinks to high treason)
      The buffoon would also have to come up with a vp…who just might be more capable…
      Mitt, irrelevant to his promises ( hopes) on the economy was a far greater prospect of managing the economy than obama ever will.

  • Amused

    Well Ahlert maybe it's because the investigation was ongoing for months, since the FBI had to go through 30,000 e-mails before handing them over to the Pentagon . Why do you think that was Ahlert ? You , think maybe because the FBI found no security threats , but just inappropriate conduct , to be dealt with by the Military Chiefs , for if there was a security threat it would be entirely in the domain of the FBI .
    And what about Eric Cantor , outspoken Teabagger and detractor of Obama , who became aware of this pecadillo as late as Oct.27 th ?? Why didn't Cantor open his mouth , he's had no problems with innuendo bordering on[ if not ] outright LIES regarding his criticisms of Obama ?
    And WHY is it Ahlert , that you use the word "seemingly " when Referring to Sen.Feinsteins intent to get Petraeus to testify ? Why dont you just stick to the facts , MINUS "what you heard " , your guesses , and your innuendo .

    • Viet Vet

      Teabaggers are queers, a democrap constituency.

  • Amused

    At this point Ahlert , neither you nor I , or the man on the street know anything more than what is now in the public domain . You have no inside track , and any "un-named source " you may quote is nothing more than fluff .You're a spin doctor Ahlert , why not try being a journalist , and wait on the investigation like everyone else .

    • Mary Sue

      so when SeeBS quotes an inside source, they too are full of fluff?

  • pierce

    The revelation was delayed because it would have affected the outcome of the election (maybe), but apparently the population does not seem to care, as they gave Obama a mandate, according to Obama. He really was worried, that is one reason some ballot boxes were stuffed (at least here in Florida), witness St Lucie county.

  • wsk

    Security Threat Investigation Delayed to Protect Obama? Ya think?

  • Viet Vet

    If FOX could get the information without Petraeus help, she sure a H could too.

  • Steve Chavez


    THIS DELAY IN INFO is a good thing since it is one more chink. Even if this scandal was revealed, the dumbing down of Americans had already taken place.

    Obama would have found a way to blame General Betray Us anyway there is hope that the General will remember when Senator's Obama and Hillary were spitting on him and when Hillary called him a "liar" to his face. BETRAY US CAN BETRAY THEM! To impeach both Hillary and Obama would be the greatest event in our history. Then Holder and Obama will be extradited to MEXICO for Fast and Furious and they will finally be among their AMIGOS in a Mexican prison!

    • Mary Sue

      I still think there's something more hardcore being held over Petraeus' head that will prevent him from spilling the beans. The resignation thing was designed to make people believe that maybe he would but I am reasonably sure he will not.

  • BLJ

    Obama should be modeling an orange jumpsuit for this. Hell, he should have been put in one long ago.

  • Len_Powder

    How does the AG, Eric Holder, not tell the President that the Director of the CIA is undergoing criminal investigation – REGARLESS of what the guidelines say? Are these people that stupid or do they think that we are? Let's not kid ourselves, however. Obama got away with murder in Fast & Furious – Part 1, and he will do it again in F&F – Part II Bengazhi. One big difference between Watergate and Benghazigate is that in the former the media was rabid about crucifying Richard Nixon; in the latter they are highly solicitous about protecting Obama. When are we going to prosecute the MSM for lying, deceiving, slandering and covering up? When are we going to launch a counter-attack against the greatest threat against liberty, justice and truth in this nation: the leftwing media?