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W.H. Tries to Write Al Qaeda Out of Libya Story

12:22 PM, Oct 20, 2012 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES
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One thing that has troubled both intelligence officials and those on Capitol Hill as they have evaluated the administration's early response to the attacks is what appears to be an effort to write al Qaeda out of the story. For example, the talking points first reported by Lake, include this sentence: "There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations." But according to several officials familiar with the original assessment from which the talking points were derived, the U.S. intelligence community had reported the fact that these were extremists with ties to al Qaeda. That key part was omitted.

Why was that language dropped from the talking points distributed to Congress and Obama administration officials? Did anyone at the White House or on the National Security Council have any role in drafting them?

In addition to the intercepts between Ansar al Sharia jihadists and AQIM, the Associated Press reported Friday that "the CIA station chief in Libya reported to Washington within hours of last month's deadly attack on the US consulate that there was evidence it was carried out by militants, not a spontaneous mob upset about an American-made video ridiculing Islam's Prophet Muhammad."

As further evidence of the ever-shifting Obama administration narrative, the AP article, which ran some 24 hours before this latest public relations push, also reported: "The White House now says the attack was probably carried out by an al Qaeda-linked group, with no public demonstration beforehand." 

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