CBS News is the latest outlet for the famous Sept 15 CIA talking points which sorta kinda exonerate UN Ambassador Susan Rice and her Sunday talk show suicide:
CIA talking points for Susan Rice called Benghazi attack "spontaneously inspired" by protests
(CBS News) WASHINGTON - CBS News has obtained the CIA talking points given to U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice on Sept. 15 regarding the fatal attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, four days earlier. CBS News correspondent Margaret Brennan says the talking points, which were also given to members of the House intelligence committee, make no reference to terrorism being a likely factor in the assault, which left U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans dead.
Rice, who was considered a likely nominee to replace Hillary Clinton as secretary of state, has been attacked by Republican lawmakers for saying on "Face the Nation" (video) on Sept. 16 that all indications were the attack "began spontaneously" - suggesting it likely sprang from a protest against an anti-Muslim video found on the Internet. Protests of that nature had been seen in other Muslim nations in the days and weeks before the Benghazi attack.
The CIA's talking points read as follows:
"The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the US Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the US diplomatic post in Benghazi and subsequently its annex. There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations.
This assessment may change as additional information is collected and analyzed and as currently available information continues to be evaluated.
The investigation is on-going, and the US Government is working with Libyan authorities to bring to justice those responsible for the deaths of US citizens."
If the key paragraph, which includes "spontaneously inspired by the protests at the US Embassy in Cairo" seems familiar, that is only because you have been following the story.
Eli Lake excerpted the CIA talking points back on Oct. 1:
Why did it take eight days for the administration to acknowledge the 9/11 attacks in Benghazi were acts of terrorism? An unclassified briefing document provides new clues, writes Eli Lake.
The talking points say, among other things, “The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the US Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the US diplomatic post in Benghazi and subsequently its annex. There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations.”
In addition, the briefing says this “assessment may change as additional information is collected” and that the “investigation is on-going.”
Evidently that didn't stick because WaPo dean David Ignatius was given the talking points for an Oct 19 column defending Susan Rice:
CIA documents supported Susan Rice’s description of Benghazi attacks
The Romney campaign may have misfired with its suggestion that statements by President Obama and U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice about the Benghazi attack last month weren’t supported by intelligence, according to documents provided by a senior U.S. intelligence official.
“Talking points” prepared by the CIA on Sept. 15, the same day that Rice taped three television appearances, support her description of the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. Consulate as a reaction to Arab anger about an anti-Muslim video prepared in the United States. According to the CIA account, “The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the U.S. Consulate and subsequently its annex. There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations.”
And now CBS News makes three.
So Susan Rice wasn't lying, she was a useful patsy with no operational responsibility for the debacle.
And as a bonus conspiracy theory - the CIA was lying in its talking points because it had no desire to admit that the attackers may have been attempting to free militants held at an off-the-books CIA detention center. Team Obama was not in a hurry to promote this discovery either, so the Veil of Deceit was lowered by all. Just a guess, obviously. James Taranto offered similar dark speculations.
And left up in the air - presumably the CIA retained authority to detain captives temporarily pending a transfer to proper authorities. How long is "temporary", and might that be what was happening in Benghazi?
OOPS: From CNN, we are told that Gen. Petraeus had different talking points from Susan Rice. Also, gthe initial intel was confusing and Petraeus may have compounded the confusion in his first Congressional briefing:
Former CIA Director David Petraeus knew “almost immediately” after the attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi it was the work of Ansar Al-Sharia, a loosely-formed group that has some members sympathetic to Al Qaeda, according to a source who has spoken to him and is directly familiar with his analysis of the situation.
According to this source, Petraeus says the stream of intelligence from multiple sources, including video at the scene, indicated the group was behind the attack. But a separate stream of intelligence also emerged indicating ongoing riots in Cairo over an anti-Islamic film might have motivated the attacks.
The source says there were some 20 different intelligence reports
indicating the Cairo film might be responsible. The CIA eventually
disapproved all those reports, but not until after Petraeus’ initial
briefings to Congress in which he discussed all possibilities, the
source said. “All those other reports got disproved over time,” the
source says Petraeus told him.
Petraeus also believes confusion has emerged over two separate intelligence questions. First, who was responsible, and second what was the motivation of the attackers.
Petraeus’ aim in testifying, the source said, is in part to clear up “a lot of misrepresentations of what he told Congress initially. He wants to clear it up.” Petraeus is expected to tell Congress he had no direct involvement in the talking points UN ambassador Susan Rice used in the days after the attack. Petraeus developed unclassified talking points that were approved by the intelligence community the source says. Rice’s talking points may have used some of that information but were separate from what Petraeus provided.