Intel reports raise questions about WH handling of Libya
Former White House chief of staff Andy Card weighs in
- Duration 8:19
- Date Oct 3, 2012
Former White House chief of staff Andy Card weighs in
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This transcript is automatically generated
Tonight's debate is about domestic issues there is a chance that foreign policy could come up.
Thanks in part to two big stories today concerning the Obama administration's investigation.
Of the attack on our consulate in Libya.
First the White House is refusing now to comment on reports that Washington -- -- requests for more security.
Prior to that September 11 attack that killed four Americans in Libya.
White House spokesman Jay Carney says he will not come on comment on the situation.
Under review that's a quote.
Second Reuters is now reporting that administration officials received about a dozen intelligence reports.
In the hours after the attack suggesting.
That this was terrorism.
Despite all this days later the White House dispatched US ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice on -- round -- talk -- Claiming these attacks were spontaneous.
And incited by an anti Islamic film.
Andy card is a former White House chief of staff under president George W.
Bush and he's with me now Andy.
So now the administration is going silent on it saying we're not gonna respond to this this bombshell report out of congress.
That this is from the house oversight committee saying that they've got a bunch of whistle blowers are now saying that they were begging for more security over and -- yet our consulate and that.
Not only was it not provided -- Jason -- -- was on Fox News earlier saying in fact it had been.
Downgraded the security -- -- -- diminished in part.
And that that he says with a pretty -- to the ten -- -- 9/11 attack which then of course resulted in four dead Americans.
And any evolved into this strange place sandy.
We're now we've gotten.
It reports that a a dozen a dozen intelligence reports went up to administration officials saying this was terror it was al-Qaeda linked group and five days after.
They -- Susan Rice on a round of Sunday talk shows what is going on here.
Well it's all very troubling to me first of all if in fact we were asked.
-- beef up the security -- our consulate in and then Ghazi or other places around the world.
I despotic classified requested you know I would think that we could find out whether or not someone said.
You should think about beefing up the security -- Now what what might have been done to beef up security that might be classified and probably as we wouldn't want -- would commit to what it was a what do wasn't.
But I think we should know whether or not we were asked to beef up security and and I think we could say that.
Yes we did consider doing that or no we didn't consider doing that.
In terms of what might have been done to beef up security I don't think that would be appropriate to talk about on the side of -- sending somebody yelled couldn't misrepresent.
Something if in fact that happened if ambassador rice and knowingly.
Was sent out to it to misrepresent what was happening that would be -- would because I think that would indicate that they were making a political calculation.
-- what to talk about rather than talking about the truth.
I hope that.
The intelligence community first of all paid attention to what was going on around the world and prior to the anniversary of 9/11 half of all this was the eleventh year anniversary.
Of that horrible attack in 9/11 2001.
And I suspect that the intelligence community was on highest alert by most of our embassies and consulates in the region.
Should have been on the highest alert so that should have been good intelligence I hope it made it to the White House and.
I'm glad but Helen Thomas -- that we had a -- public if -- if Turkey about how things work.
But I learned about things work and in the White House -- days neighbors -- there was no intelligence saying that this was as a result of a mob scene a -- mob then Susan Rice should not have gone out and said that it was.
Get out let's talk Turkey about how things actually work in the White House though Andy because Susan Rice went out there this -- the attack happened on September 11 -- -- twelve.
They're saying within our -- -- -- Fox News had broken this nick news that a week ago that within 24 hours we knew that it was terror and -- Reuters reporting that they had.
About a dozen intelligence reports the -- administration did suggesting that it was al-Qaeda related militants who were involved in this.
So we're talking a by Wednesday at the latest it was Sunday that Susan Rice went out of the -- just Sunday.
And not just one -- not an inadvertent comment saying I think look it's confusing you know it could be it could have -- one of a number of things.
It was all the way that.
Reno Sunday five days later when she came out and said I'm telling you.
It was spontaneous.
It was about the video it wasn't a pre planned think they were -- they were really help things in addition a ruling in things.
How does the UN ambassador gets sent out an attending Sunday talk shows.
As a practical matter by an administration.
She shouldn't have been.
If in fact and I suspected that the administration knew that Susan Rice was gonna go out there and talk to the to the media on that Sunday you.
That's pre planned and is be lots of communication with the -- which went out.
They should've told her what they expected her to say -- what they anticipated the questions might be in what.
Potential answers would be and they should not.
Allow her -- -- -- -- to answer anything that you know it's not true.
So they should've told her the truth as they know it now it's one thing to say we don't know everything yet she didn't say that she offered a definitive.
Answer to a question and she said that it was not a terrorist attack didn't factor was.
As a result of this.
Movie trailer in the mob scene.
If if she knew that that was not the truth she shouldn't have indicated that it was.
And I can't imagine that she would have been well briefed before she went on that talk show.
Yes she it's -- legacy she never actually said it wasn't terror but she said it was it was it was not pre planned.
It was spontaneous I have a nice dinner is ready and I would not say it wasn't our she said that it was clear.
Clearly -- the reaction to the movie trailer.
I wanna get back today but I don't know if there's any intelligence that suggested that's what it was.
That's how it's looking at this point I want to -- I don't think it was Indian intelligence that suggested this was in response.
The State Department.
Now say now claiming up and the White House now claiming up about whether our ambassador requested more security and you say that that shouldn't be -- -- information we should get to know that.
About whether or not they did here's the State Department has it instituted quote an accountability review.
That is under way right now trying to see what did happen in the days leading up to that attack.
That claimed our ambassadors like first time since -- -- -- lost to US investors two murdered like best.
So is it.
The right thing.
For the administration to not say anything while this accountability review is under -- Well and I understand the knee jerk reaction is to say there's an ongoing investigation not gonna comment.
And I don't think we should -- -- about who was up who was down who said what I do think it's credible to ask.
-- are you anticipating that we should Harden up facilities because of September 11 the anniversary of September 11.
And I think that's a credible question I don't think they should -- the answer to that.
Yes we we did consider that.
And we're not gonna comment about we do what we did -- we did not do but we were asked to Harden up facilities -- to take a look at it.
I think that they should -- that and I think they should give more detailed information to congress because after all congress has oversight and would cost money.
To Harden and in even not to Harden and I think that they should be pretty candid with congress.
I don't think that this is.
As benign as it appears I think that there is conscious decision not to answer the questions right now and they should be answering some questions not every one of them.
But they should provide more -- -- to the intelligence community on Capitol Hill.
-- the providing for lust but they can certainly tell us whether or not they were asked to Harden a facility.
And say we took it under review and it made our decisions.
Now the that's the ranking Republican in on the Intel committee in the cut in the senate says at best.
We the briefings provided -- were incomplete at worst they were misleading the administration says look.
Our understanding has evolved and we've based our public statements on our best assessments as we receive from the Intel community Andy card good to see you thanks much for being.