A Republican senator threatened Feb. 10 to block two of President Obama's top national security opponents over administration secrecy regarding the Benghazi massacre of four Americans in September.
Threatening an unprecedented denial of a president's historic ability to choose advisors, Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, left, said he would fight the nominations of John Brennan as CIA director and Chuck Hagel as defense secretary unless the Obama administration meets his demands. He wants more information about the president's reaction on Sept. 11 to the attack that date on U.S. outposts in Benghazi that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three Americans providing security.
Meanwhile, revelations continue regarding key figures in the administration, including Brennan, former CIA Director David Petraeus and their secret activities.
Former State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley wrote that the CIA's drone program is seriously hurting U.S. alliances with Muslim nations, for example. Also, former Navy SEAL Brandon Webb and former Green Beret Jack Murphy are publishing a book this week arguing that Petraeus and Stevens were vulnerable because the Obama White House and Defense Department failed to brief them about U.S. military operations in Libya. The authors assert additionally that militants launched their fatal attack as a retaliation for reprisals authorized by Brennan in his current job as chief of counter-terrorism and assistant to the president.
The allegations are pieces of the puzzle I am presenting in Presidential Puppetry, my book later this month. In the meantime, material from diverse sources is excerpted below. On this kind of national security story especially, conventional reporting is limited by partisan half-truths, fear of retaliation by sources, and media self-censorship. Therefore, the material includes both mainstream United States news outlets as well as small, independent, and foreign media.