BCN editor’s note: This is the first of two Ken Blackwell columns for Thursday.
It’s an old American saying: “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me!” President Obama’s National Security Adviser went on another Sunday show last weekend. She proceeded to tell the nation and the world that the AWOL U.S. Army soldier held for five years by the Taliban, Bowe Bergdahl, had served “honorably, and with distinction.” She defended the Obama administration’s decision to trade five of the worst detainees at Guantànamo Bay for this soldier.
This is not the first time Susan Rice has been dispatched to the Sunday shows. In 2012, she appeared on five Sunday talk shows in one day. Then, her mission was to spin the story that it was an anti-Muslim video produced in the U.S. that had provoked the deadly attack on our diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya.
We now know that that was not true. We have since learned that the CIA never told the administration that it was a video that had precipitated the lethal assault that resulted in the deaths of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, and three brave Americans who had been sent to provide security for our mission in that strife-torn land.
We have good reason to believe that Susan Rice’s performance on those Sunday shows was all a part of an Obama campaign “narrative.” The hotly contested presidential race was then entering its final weeks. Vice President Joe Biden was stumping the country, bragging that “GM is alive and Osama bin Laden is dead.” True, but the Obama-Biden campaign’s simultaneous contention that “al Qaeda is on the run” has proven not to be true. The black flags and slogans of al Qaeda were prominently on view in the streets of Benghazi.
In order to protect the main theme of the Obama `12 campaign, however, it was necessary to politicize the U.S. State Department in ways never before attempted. Everything had to be done to maintain the fiction that “al Qaeda is on the run.” Susan Rice was dispatched to those Sunday talk shows, we have since been told, because Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was “exhausted” by the traumatic events of that bloody week. It is certainly draining to have to lie to the dead men’s families, lie to the nation, lie to the world, and lie to those men’s caskets. But Hillary always knows where her duty lies.
So then, Susan Rice did the lying for the fatigued Madam Secretary. Rice was then our Ambassador to the UN and President Obama’s “designated political liar”. As a top U.S. diplomat, she fully met the job description some wag gave to such: “A diplomat is a person paid to lie for his (or her) country.” Note, though, even that cynical description didn’t say lie to her country.
That’s what Susan Rice did in 2012. It’s also what made it impossible for even this president to name her as Hillary Clinton’s successor at the State Department. Safely re-elected (and ready to be “more flexible” for Vladimir Putin), Mr. Obama could not afford to have his second term agenda derailed by the battle royal that would have ensued had he named Susan Rice as Secretary of State.
Better to tap her as National Security Adviser. That way, you don’t have to hassle with something as inconvenient as Senate confirmation.
So now, Susan Rice has been deployed once again as a Truth-Seeking Missile, ready to shoot down any attempt by Americans to learn what is actually being done with our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.
Last Sunday’s talk show appearance by Susan Rice ends any usefulness she has for the American people. In telling the world that Bowe Bergdahl served “honorably and with distinction,” she appears not to have read the extensive Pentagon report on the questionable disappearance of this Summer Soldier from his unit in Afghanistan. If this is the case, then she clearly cannot serve with effectiveness as National Security Adviser.
The most obvious question she should have asked before going on national television is:
“What do we know about this guy?” She could easily have obtained his file before her early Sunday appearance.
There is, unfortunately, a worse possibility: Susan Rice may have had the Bergdahl file in hand and decided she would go before the cameras and try to bluff her way through. She would simply assert that Bergdahl had served with honor and distinction.
Susan Rice must resign. She has not served with honor or with distinction. And it is clear that when she appears before a national audience on TV, she is on a mission in mendacity. By repeatedly thrusting her forward, the Obama administration is giving us anything but it Sunday best.
Ken Blackwell is a senior fellow at the Family Research Council and the American Civil Rights Union, and on the board of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty.
Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons