News / USA

    White House Defends Stance on Libya Attack

    Kent Klein
    The White House is defending its response to the deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Obama administration officials acknowledged that their account of the incident changed as new information became available.

    White House press secretary Jay Carney said Wednesday the administration’s description of last month’s assault has shifted because of updated information.

    “We have been clear all along that this was an ongoing investigation, that as more facts became available we would make you aware of them as appropriate, and we have done that,” Carney said.

    The U.S. ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, and three other American diplomats were killed  September 11, in a violent attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.

    Some White House officials originally linked the assault to protests over a privately-made video ridiculing Islam.  Neither President Barack Obama nor Secretary of State Hillary Clinton initially mentioned terrorism.  They later said it was a planned terrorist attack.

    Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney has criticized the administration’s changing response to the incident, and charged that the president has a weak foreign policy, especially in the Middle East.

    The Republican-led House of Representatives began hearings Wednesday into the attack, questioning whether there was adequate security at the consulate in Libya.

    Some Democrats have accused Republicans of using a tragedy for political gain, less than four weeks before the presidential election.

    The White House spokesman acknowledged that greater security was needed at the facility in Benghazi.

    “I think there is no question that when four Americans are killed at a diplomatic facility, that something went wrong,” Carney said.

    The State Department has been investigating the incident, and Carney told reporters the president is committed to following the facts wherever they may lead.

    “From the day that this happened, the president has been focused on ensuring that we are doing everything we can to bring the perpetrators to justice, making sure that diplomatic personnel and facilities around the world are protected, and that we take the steps necessary to find out what happened and why,” Carney said.

    Meanwhile, the president’s top expert on counterterrorism, John Brennan, was in Tripoli Wednesday, meeting with Libyan President Mohamed Yousef El-Magariaf and other top officials.  White House officials say they discussed the investigation of the incident and ways the U.S. can assist Libya in efforts to strengthen its democracy.

    You May Like

    Hope Remains for Rio Olympic Games, Despite Woes

    Facing a host of problems, Rio prepares for holding the games but experts say some risks, like Zika, may not be as grave as initially thought

    IS Use of Social Media to Recruit, Radicalize Still a Top Threat to US

    Despite military gains against IS in Iraq and Syria, their internet propaganda still commands an audience; US officials see 'the most complex challenge that the federal government and industry face'

    ‘Time Is Now’ to Save Africa’s Animals From Poachers, Activist Says

    During Zimbabwe visit, African Wildlife Foundation President Kaddu Sebunya says poaching hurts Africa as slave trade once did

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Godwin from: Nigeria
    October 11, 2012 7:08 AM
    The White House as presently constituted is too weak to do anything for USA. The earlier allusion to film protest was an attempt by the White House to deceive the American populace, nay electorate, as usual 'because it is election year'. This is what you get from a weak foreign policy especially when the administration is grossly inexperienced and expert at manipulation of unemployment figures - compensating for July/August and dropping back figure to the starting point. Real progress would have been if the figures were lowered below what was inherited. BUT NO! Showing weakness on all fronts is not how to maintain America's leadership in the globe. Ronald Regan of blessed memory once said, "If you want peace prepare for war." But America has portrayed itself a toothless bulldog that Libyan terrorists felt so confident to take out US consulate at Benghazi. What a shame! Is this a sign of the audacity of hope? Or the Change that you need?

    by: mark l. from: east tn
    October 10, 2012 10:33 PM
    where was the military?
    one of the primary tasks of our medtterranean fleet is to protect our embassies. this attack took six hours, and the state dept was in communication with them as it occurrred. no one called the fleet? bring in the commanders of the fleet, and ask them if they knew what was happening, as it happened.
    prepare to be shocked.

    by: Grantman from: Atlanta
    October 10, 2012 9:21 PM
    Quote: "White House press secretary Jay Carney said Wednesday the administration’s description of last month’s assault has shifted because of updated information."

    The White House had information within 24 hours that it was not a "spontaneous uprising against a [insert adjective] video but that it was a terrorist attack. Why did it take over a week for them to "shift because of updated information?"

    by: Daniel Phelan
    October 10, 2012 8:38 PM
    I know we about to hear it coming from you all Republicans but really? Really Republicans? This is all you can come up with? The exploitation of the death of an honorable man; a man of country?

    This was a terrible violent act by terrorist. They are to blame.

    What are you saying Republicans? That we should invade Iraq? 4000 dead American soldiers among countless others!!?? Oppps! Wrong enemy!!

    Are you saying that Republicans and GW Bush are responsible for letting 9/11 happen?
    In Response

    by: Grantman from: Atlanta
    October 11, 2012 6:39 AM
    Oh, good heavens, Daniel. Your entire reply, except for the truth that "this was a terrible violent act by terrorists and they are to blame" is an entire non-sequitur.

    All I was asking is why, if the administration knew within 24 hours that this was a terrible violent act by terrorists, that they lied for the next week in public statements by both Jay Carney and Ambassador Rice.

    This is not a Republican or a Democrat issue; this is an American issue and has nothing to do with Iraq.
    In Response

    by: David
    October 11, 2012 2:07 AM
    Nice strawman and obfuscation you built there Daniel. Care to address the lies of Obama, Clinton and the UN ambassador? Sorry, you are too busy playing cover 2 defense for the liars in the Dem party. By the way, Bush is no longer President, quit bringing him up, by the way, the American people are beginning to miss the competency of the Bush presidency everyday.
    In Response

    by: Hombre from: Sedona, Az
    October 11, 2012 1:20 AM
    Oh please, nobody's that dense. The Administration refused to provide adequate security, theAmbassador and three others died and the President, Sec of State, UN Ambassador, et al., lied about it for a week after the truth came out from other sources. The Libyans said their story was preposterous. Even to an Obot the "Bush defense" has to seem lame. So why use it?
    In Response

    by: Bob from: Twin Cities MN
    October 11, 2012 12:25 AM
    @ Daniel Phelan _ Actually, Daniel, what everyone with a sincere love of country should do is listen to the testimony from the hearing today. So far it shows a deep incompetence and an ongoing attitude of misplaced superiority and arrogance in the State Department. Nothing Nixon or Clinton or Bush did even comes close to the magnitude of this mismanaged security snafu. Heads should roll, starting with H Clinton and everyone who works for her. The political exploitation is on the part of the Democrats as they even now continue to lie about the protocols and what they knew. Just check out the testimony.
    In Response

    by: Four Gees from: Reality
    October 10, 2012 11:11 PM
    Sorry Mr. Phelan, but the time for partisanship is over. The issue is not whether Rs or Ds want to go to war or avoid going to war. What is at issue is the lack of appropriate response by the current administration to a a series of orchestrated terrorist attacks on US embassies. No more smoke and mirrors from any politician - surely even you can understand that.
    In Response

    by: Hugh Blomeke from: Annapolis, Md
    October 10, 2012 10:43 PM
    If you're going to add a response, at least try to make it a coherent one. You might also try to read and understand the point of the article which has prompted your wide-eyed reaction. Of course terrorist are to blame for the attack. It's the Obama administration which is responsible for leaving the consulate and four now dead Americans vulnerable to the terrorist attack. Iraq? George Bush? American soldiers?. . . . huh? Just what connection do you see to the incompetance, dishonesty and dereliction of duty by your president and foolish administration?
    In Response

    by: Tom from: Ohio
    October 10, 2012 9:30 PM
    Hey, waitaminute - I thought this was caused by otherwise peaceful Muslims that were offended by some obscure video made by some two-bit producer. You Obamabots really need to stick to one story.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolatei
    X
    July 29, 2016 4:02 PM
    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolate

    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Tesla Opens Battery-Producing Gigafactory

    Two years after starting to produce electric cars, U.S. car maker Tesla Motors has opened the first part of its huge battery manufacturing plant, which will eventually cover more than a square kilometer. Situated close to Reno, Nevada, the so-called Gigafactory will eventually produce more lithium-ion batteries than were made worldwide in 2013. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Polio-affected Afghan Student Fulfilling Her Dreams in America

    Afghanistan is one of only two countries in the world where children still get infected by polio. The other is Pakistan. Mahbooba Akhtarzada who is from Afghanistan, was disabled by polio, but has managed to overcome the obstacles caused by this crippling disease. VOA's Zheela Nasari caught up with Akhtarzada and brings us this report narrated by Bronwyn Benito.
    Video

    Video Hillary Clinton Promises to Build a 'Better Tomorrow'

    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton urged voters Thursday not to give in to the politics of fear. She vowed to unite the country and move it forward if elected in November. Clinton formally accepted the Democratic Party's nomination at its national convention in Philadelphia. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more.
    Video

    Video Trump Tones Down Praise for Russia

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is toning down his compliments for Russia and Vladimir Putin as such rhetoric got him in trouble recently. After calling on Russia to find 30.000 missing emails from rival Hillary Clinton, Trump told reporters he doesn't know Putin and never called him a great leader, just one who's better than President Barack Obama. Putin has welcomed Trump's overtures, but, as Zlatica Hoke reports, ordinary Russians say they are not putting much faith in Trump.
    Video

    Video Uganda Unveils its First Solar-powered Bus

    A solar-powered bus described by its Ugandan makers as the first in Africa has made its public debut. Kiira Motors' electric bus, Kayoola, displayed recently at a stadium in Uganda's capital. From Kampala, Maurice Magorane filed this report narrated by Salem Solomon.
    Video

    Video Silicon Valley: More Than A Place, It's a Culture

    Silicon Valley is a technology powerhouse and a place that companies such as Google, Facebook and Apple call home. It is a region in northern California that stretches from San Francisco to San Jose. But, more than that, it's known for its startup culture. VOA's Elizabeth Lee went inside one company to find out what it's like to work in a startup.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora