Former CIA director David Petraeus on Friday testified in front of Congress on the terrorist acts against the American Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that took place on September 11th. His testimony will no doubt place him severely at odds with both the Obama administration and its official stance on the attacks.
It's a good thing Petraeus is already out of a job, otherwise he would probably be asked to resign this afternoon.
Fox News and CNN both have both released stories earlier confirming that David Petraeus will state in no uncertain terms that both he and the CIA knew that the assault on the American consulate in Benghazi, immediately after it happened, was a terrorist attack linked to al-Qaeda, and not the random act of violence in response to a YouTube video that the Obama administration initially said it was.
Not only does this contradict the numerous statements that President Obama made, but it also contradicts UN Ambassador Susan Rice, who was seen on many Sunday morning news programs on September 16th stating that it was in response to a YouTube video insulting Muslims.
In the Friday testimony, Petraeus reportedly testified that the al-Qaeda element was initially removed from Rice's CIA talking points, according to Congressman Peter King, who led the congressional session and briefed the media afterwards.
Petraeus is also prepared to testify that his initial remarks were altered by the Obama administration, which would explain why the briefing he gave shortly after the attack was similar to the one given by Ambassador Rice. When speaking before Congress, Petraeus appears ready to distance himself from those comments as well as the administration's initial stance.
Congressman King reportedly asked the former CIA director if he concurred with the administration that the attack on Benghazi great out of a spontaneous demonstration against the aforementioned YouTube video insulting the Prophet Mohammed. King said that that is not what his recollection was when it came to what Petraeus initially said.
Congressman King also said that Petraeus testified that the CIA's talking points were edited by the administration in order to play down the terrorism aspect. The edited comments were much close to those parroted by Ambassador Rice later on.
According to CNN, it was believed that Petraeus would testify that he did not know where Ambassador Rice got her information from. Fox News is reporting that Petraeus was planning on bringing his original set of talking points as prepared by the CIA, no doubt so that Congress could see what the CIA believed before being told to water down their story.
This will of course raise even more questions. Why did Petraeus wait until now to recant his story? He of course had numerous opportunities to come forward and do so. Did someone order him to go along?
One thing for sure is that this will no doubt bring about more inquiries and an even deeper investigation. Now that Petraeus appears to have directly contradicted Ambassador Susan Rice and President Obama, one can expect that more high level officials will be summoned to appear before Congress. It's anyone's guess as to how badly this could hurt the president as well as members of his administration.