• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Media Scandal in the Making: CBS Posts Still More of President's Benghazi Interview

    On Sunday night, a full 54 days after the terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya, CBS finally posted a critically important segment of the 60 Minutes interview with President Obama conducted on September 12.

    Unbelievably, it was left on the cutting room floor even as 60 Minutes aired a long segment with President Obama criticizing presidential challenger Mitt Romney over his remarks on protests in Egypt. Given the substance of what was left out, this editorial decision shows CBS as either shamelessly biased in favor of the President or hopelessly incompetent as a news organization.

    Central to the newly released segment is President Obama’s failure to describe the Benghazi attack as terrorism in his Rose Garden statement made earlier the same day. It will be recalled that he was pressed hard by Mitt Romney on this point in the second presidential debate.

    This is how the exchange went:

    CBS’S STEVE KROFT: Mr. President, this morning you went out of your way to avoid the use of the word terrorism in connection with the Libya attack. Do you believe that this was a terrorist attack?

    OBAMA: Well, it’s too early to tell exactly how this came about, what group was involved, but obviously it was an attack on Americans. And we are going to be working with the Libyan government to make sure that we bring these folks to justice, one way or the other.

    KROFT: It’s been described as a mob action, but there are reports that they were very heavily armed with grenades. That doesn’t sound like your normal demonstration.

    OBAMA: As I said, we’re still investigating exactly what happened. I don’t want to jump the gun on this. But you’re right that this is not a situation that was exactly the same as what happened in Egypt. And my suspicion is that there are folks involved in this who were looking to target Americans from the start. So we’re gonna make sure that our first priority is to get our folks out safe, make sure that our embassies are secured around the world, and then we are going to go after those folks who carried this out.

    KROFT: There have been reports, obviously this isn’t the first time…there have been attacks on the consulate before. There was an attack against the British ambassador. Do you … this occurred on September 11. Can you tell me why the ambassador was in Benghazi yesterday? Was it to evaluate security at the consulate?

    OBAMA: Well, keep in mind Chris Stevens is somebody who was one of the first Americans on the ground when we were in the process of saving Benghazi and providing the opportunity for Libyans to create their own democracy. So this is somebody who had been courageous, had been on the ground, had helped to advise me and Secretary Clinton when we were taking our actions against Muammar Qadhafi, and is somebody who is very familiar with the terrain. He was doing the work that he does as a diplomat, helping to shape our policies in the region at a time when things are still fairly fragile. But I think it’s important to note that we have a Libyan government in place that is fully cooperative, that sees the United States as a friend, that recognizes we played an important role in liberating Libya and providing the Libyan people an opportunity to forge their own destiny. And in fact we had Libyans who helped protect our diplomats when they were under attack. But this is a country that is still rebuilding in the aftermath of Qadhafi. They don’t necessarily always have the same capabilities that countries with more established governments might have in helping to provide protection to our folks. But beyond that, what I want to do is make sure that we know exactly what happened, how it happened, who perpetrated this action, then we’ll act accordingly.


    Kroft asks reasonable and informed questions, which the CBS audience would undoubtedly like to have answered. Why did the President choose not to call the attack an act of terrorism? Given the lack of security, was there a plan to evacuate the Benghazi consulate? Was that why Stevens went there in the first place?

    Equally interestingly, President Obama’s answer is totally misleading. Stevens had been pleading for months for additional security in Benghazi and believed his life was in danger. He had also informed the Administration that Libyan forces were insufficient and unreliable as protection.

    Why CBS chose not to post the above portion on the Internet until November 4 is a mystery. It was done entirely without fanfare and was revealed by Fox News’s Bret Baier.

    American mainstream media coverage of the Benghazi terrorist attack is a scandal in its own right. The “fourth estate” is supposedly an additional check on the powers of the federal government. Yet in this case, when four Americans—including an ambassador—lost their lives, most of the media have shamefully abdicated responsibility.

    Posted in Featured [slideshow_deploy]

    22 Responses to Media Scandal in the Making: CBS Posts Still More of President's Benghazi Interview

    1. Bobbie says:

      …how could Hillary? Any of them? How could they let this happen???

    2. kateyleigh says:

      Why did they wait until now, and then quietly do so? Why indeed.

    3. President Obama and his administration are a total disgrace to the office of the Presidency of The United States of America! This is what America gets for electing a man that the people who voted for him knew little about. The people that he surrounded himself with were not people that emulate the ideal of what America stands for or where we came from to where we are today! His lack of transparency and mystery should have been a warning sign that he was and is not a man that appreciates the heritage of this nation and the struggles it has been through over the last two centuries! I am shocked at how some of the media have protected this man from dubious acts of what our Founding Fathers would call treasonous and would classify him as a traitor to this great nation!

    4. Barry Chapman says:

      If you listen carefully to the interview, when Steve Kroft makes the statement "Mr. President, this morning you went out of your way to avoid the use of the word terrorism in connection with the Libya attack.", Obama can be heard to say "Right". In other words, he is agreeing with the statement that he went out of his way not to call it a terrorist attack. I'm shocked that no one in the media has picked up on it!

    5. American ex-Pat says:

      After the elections simply change your sources for news, no viewers equals no commercials, which equals no sponsors, which brings new management and new formats at networks. with hopefully unbiased coverage!
      I must add that the media sources, whether printed, radio, or television, during these past four-five years have been the worst 'in the tank', liberally-biased, totally inept examples for state-control since Hugo Chavez took over the broadcast and printed news in Venezuela ten years ago.

      • Craig Walser says:

        Amen brother! WE THE PEOPLE need to boycott ABC, CBS & NBC for being involved with the Benghazi cover up! These stations need to be run out of business. Have they no shame for covering for this criminal? I will not rest until Obummer is in prison along with his other conspirators!

    6. KAHR50 says:

      We no longer have a fourth estate.

      They are the new Pravda.

    7. Lloyd Scallan says:

      This is not a "mystery"! Do you suggest CBS mistakenly "left that portion on the cutting room floor"? This from one of leftist of the left weekly programs on the big three media outlets in the tank for Obama? Now because CBS released this critical piece of info, (less that 48 hours before the election) they can claim they did not hide anything that would make their boss (Obama) look bad, and worse, they believe it. The truly sad part is unless voters watch FNC, most will not have a clue about 4 dead Americans and Obama's/Hillary's cover-up of Benghazi. But that's life in the world of Obama!

    8. Mary Connelly says:

      The short version of the "60 minutes" interview shown on Fox News lacked the whole context to inform the public. I just read the omitted portion of the interview. If Obama wins the election, he should be tried and kicked out of office. He won't resign, as Nixon did. There are many reasons to vote him out of office, and there are other outrageous acts, but this one, after the massacre at Ft. Hood, should end his tyranical rule.

      • I've been saying for a long time now, the Joint Chiefs of Staff should be riding up to the White House with as many troops as it would take, telling this jerk lets go, no need to pack you'll get a pink jumpsuit and some flip-flops when you get to Leavenworth.

    9. Don39 says:

      First, vote this thugocracy out of office today. Tomorrow start pressuring Congress to Investigate ,indict, convict and punish all those in the Chain of Command, up to and especially the Commander in Chief, who bear ANY responsibility for this atrocity!

    10. texac says:

      It’s obvious to me that our Ambassador died for the sake of Obama’s re-election. Obama had been proclaiming in his campaigning that “Bin Laden is dead and Al-Qaida is finished”. I suspect that he was advised by Vallerie Jarret and David Axelrod (his two close political operatives); that if he utilized force to extract our Ambassador, that he would be admitting that Al-Qaida was not dead and that his highly touted foreign policy regarding Muslim countries was ineffective. With only two months to go before the elections, he could not admit that his policy was a failure and that Al-Qaida was still alive. So while our Ambassador was thinking of his family, praying for help, and waiting for his Government to come rescue him. Waiting, and waiting, and waiting for help that never came – our President decided to sacrifice him for election votes.

    11. Helle Dale Helle Dale says:

      Obama clearly concured with Kroft's assertion that he went out of his way not to call the event "terrorism" in the Rose Garden. His administration did not want to take on terrorism. They haven't actually called it a police matter, but that's is obviously how they think of it. How much investigating do we need to do? There was video evidence from Day 1 showing well known terrorist participants.

    12. Linda says:

      Isn't it time the American people do something about the so-called media? The only thing to do is to stop watching any of their news shows and stop listening to them. I never watch their news programs because I have known for years that they are nothing but liars. A free country cannot survive without a free, honest press. Perhaps one way to send a message is to start writing their advertisers. If the public doesn't like a TV or radio program, they lose their advertising and the program is gone. How about if we all try it?

      • David Smith says:

        Absolutely right. Until we reach critical mass, however, the "court of public opinion" will not serve justice on this travesty. How can we make our voice heard now, today, en masse? How can we, a Million or more tiny voices of outrage, shout this out from every rooftop, until this travesty is known for what it is by all? How do we make it "go viral"?

    13. Tricia Pyke says:

      We have a president who will lie to the American people regarding Benghazi. 4 Americans died that day 9/11/2012 Which they knew was a terrorist attack but yet the President refuses to utter those words. He has never said that Benghazi was a terrorist attack he called it an attack and when pressed he will dance around those words but never say them.

    14. Chuck (fisherman) says:

      I find the worst statement made about the killing of our ambassador and three other brave soldiers was that it was nothing more than a "bump in the road" according to both Obama and Biden. As a Vietnam veteran I'm
      So disappointed that this was not reported by any of the press or other media. Why did I pick up a gun and defend this country ? If you think I am angry……you are correct. I am sick to my stomach !

    15. Barbara Jones says:

      I'm so sick of that man and his lies. The people and the media that cover up for him should be tried and hung .Never happen but what a great idea. He will get away with murder again. The idiots that are voting for him this very moment, and will possibly keep him in the White House for 4 more years, obviously don't know what he is doing to this great nation of ours. He is killing the men and women that have fought and died to make this country the greatest in history. He wants to be the Dictator of this United States of America. So it becomes the United Socialist States of America. Who can stop him if he is re-elected? No one!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
      Please God help our nation survive. We can't take 4 more years of Obama and his minions.

    16. Mike, Wichita Falls says:

      "…[Chris Stevens] had helped to advise me and Secretary Clinton when we were taking our actions against Muammar Qadhafi…"

      I seem to recall him deferring responsibility to NATO to support the "freedom fighters" and take out Qadhafi. I think it was called "leading from behind" which is the PC term for following.

    17. Ray Downen says:

      It's obvious that Obama deliberately refused aid to our ambassador and other citizens in Benghazi when the terrorists attacked. He knew well what was happening. He went to bed and the next day went back on the campaign trail. Yes, he should be impeached and tried for treason. It's obvious that he is guilty. Others may have been advising him, but the decision to refuse aid was his own decision.

    18. William R says:

      Steve Kroft and CBS should cease to exist. At least in Nazi Germany, the media had to get in line with Goebbels, OR ELSE. In the US, they willingly go along and cover for a president. You would think they'd want to make the business decision to expose a president right after the whole Candy Crowley incident. But no, their sick propaganda is more important. After all Steve Kroft, we're only talking about 4 Americans who were murdered. It's not like they were waterboarded. How much less of a man can you be?

    19. Anyone else find it sickening that Obummer refers to people he is sworn to protect and the people who he has to protect them from as "folks?"

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.