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During a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) hearing held four months after the terrorist attack on the American diplomatic outpost in Benghazi, President Obama’s appointee to the U.S. Supreme Court claimed it was the anti-Muslim Internet video that sparked the attack.
Judge Merrick Garland, sitting as a member of the three-judge panel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, made the remark long after it was proved that the Obama administration lied when it said the incident was the result of a spontaneous demonstration stemming from the video.
Judicial Watch, which brought the lawsuit seeking the release of photographs taken of the late al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden after his death, reported on the hearing that took place January 10, 2013:
On that day in Washington, D.C., in a packed courtroom before Garland and judges Harry Edwards and Judith Rogers, JW was appealing the administration’s claim that releasing dozens of bin Laden postmortem photos would hurt national security. A Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) official had already testified that some images show the burial and bin Laden’s corpse being prepared for the event at sea. It’s difficult to imagine how this could possibly hurt national security. JW also argued that withholding the images undermines the president’s transparency claims, which his administration is notorious for violating.
Even the left-leaning Huffington Post, which also reported on the January 10, 2013 hearing, scoffed at the suggestion that the YouTube video had anything to do with the Benghazi firefight and dismissed another claim made by Garland.
“Garland, who wrongly stated that U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens was killed in Benghazi during spontaneous riots sparked by the release of a YouTube video, pointed to other examples of Americans being killed because of the release of information, including an inaccurate 2005 Newsweek report that suggested a Koran was flushed down a toilet at a detention facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba,” wrote Ryan J. Reilly for the Post.
On the Sunday after the Benghazi debacle, then Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice appeared on the three mainstream networks, plus CNN and Fox News, to pitch the Obama administration’s claim that the attack stemmed from the video.
Her claim was immediately met with skepticism, and within two months, it was proven false. Sen. James Inhofe referred to Benghazi as “the biggest cover-up in history” and Ambassador Rice as a part of it.
Controversy over her round of talk show appearances continued to follow Rice to the point where a month later, she withdrew her name from consideration to replace Hillary Clinton as secretary of state.
One month after that, Garland made his patently false claims in support of the court’s decision. At that time, few people had heard of him and the incident was soon forgotten. Now that he’s been thrust into the public spotlight, perhaps even more egregious statements will be discovered.
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