Rice: No regrets on Benghazi TV appearances
By BYRON TAU |
2/23/14 10:47 AM EST
National Security Adviser Susan Rice said Sunday she has no regrets about her now-infamous round of TV interviews in 2012 about the the attacks on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya.
Rice, appearing on “Meet the Press," said that nobody in the Obama administration intended to mislead the American people when she appeared on Fox, ABC, CNN, NBC and CBS in 2012 shortly after the attacks.
Asked by host David Gregory if she had any regrets about the interviews, Rice replied: “No.”
“Because what I said to you that morning, and what I did every day since, was to share the best information that we had at the time,” Rice said. “The information I provided, which I explained to you, was what we had at the moment. It could change. I commented that this was based on what we knew on that morning, was provided to me and my colleagues and, indeed, to Congress, by the intelligence community. And that's been well validated in many different ways since.”
“That information turned out, in some respects, not to be 100 percent correct," she acknowledged. "But the notion that somehow I or anybody else in the administration misled the American people is patently false. And I think that that's been amply demonstrated."
Rice was tapped to speak for the administration’son the Sunday after the Sept. 11, 2012 attacks in Benghazi and protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo.
Speaking on NBC’s “Meet the Press” in 2012, Rice called the Benghazi attacks that killed U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans a "spontaneous reaction” to an offensive video that was circulating in the United States and the Arab world.
She repeated similar talking points on Fox, ABC, CNN and CBS. Ant they were quickly disputed – and remain disputed to this day. The administration later acknowledged that the video was not the cause of the attacks and were likely pre-planned. But a recent New York Times investigation has pointed back to anger over the video.
The controversy around Rice’s Sunday show appearances may have cost her the chance to be secretary of state. She withdrew from consideration for post the under criticism in 2013, and John Kerry was appointed.
Asked if the Sunday show appearances tanked her chances, Rice said: “I don't know. What I do know is that I have a great job. It's the greatest honor in the world to work for the president of the United States and on behalf of the American people. And I couldn't ask for anything more.”