Judicial Watch: New State Department Emails Reveal Hillary Clinton Slept Past Staff Efforts to Set Up Intelligence Briefing
Clinton Advisor Sidney Blumenthal Attacks Mitt Romney as ‘Contemptible,’ a ‘Mixture of Greedy Ambition and Hollowness’
(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch today released a new batch of emails of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton connected to the Benghazi attack. Included is an email chain showing that Clinton slept late the Saturday after the Benghazi attack and missed a meeting that her staff had been trying to set up about sensitive intelligence issues, including the Presidential Daily Brief, on a day she was to make a slew of phone calls to foreign leaders.
Also included in the documents is an email from Clinton advisor Sidney Blumenthal, sent three days after the attack, describing then-Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney as “contemptible on a level not seen in past contemptible political figures” and a “mixture of greedy ambition and hollowness.”
The documents contain an email passed to Clinton in the days following the Benghazi attack in which the father of alleged Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl anguishes over the “‘Crusade’ paradigm” which he says “will never be forgotten in this part of the world.”
An email from former Ambassador Joe Wilson to Clinton expresses his concern about “Christian Dominionists who seek to turn [the military] into an instrument of their religious zealotry.”
Other emails show approval of an effort to blame an Internet video on the Benghazi attack that aired on the Al Jazeera network.
The new emails were obtained by Judicial Watch as a result of several court orders in two separate Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuits for Clinton Benghazi material. (The court orders are dated July 31, 2015, October 9, 2015, and October 20, 2015.) The documents have been made public only because Judicial Watch’s litigation has forced the State Department to conduct additional searches.
The new Benghazi documents include email traffic showing that on the Saturday two days after the Benghazi terrorist attack Hillary Clinton slept past staff efforts to set up an intelligence briefing:
Dan will be at Whitehaven with the PDB at 9:30am this morning.
He has some sensitive items that he would like to personally show you when he arrives.
From: H [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: Saturday, September 15, 2012 10:43 AM
To: Hanley, Monica R
Subject: Re: PDB
I just woke up so I missed Dan. Could he come back after I finish my calls? But I don’t have the call schedule yet so I don’t know when that would be. Do you?
From: Hanley, Monica R [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: Saturday, September 15, 2012 10:51 AM
Subject: Re: PDB
A pouch with all of your call sheets and the schedule in en route to you. Here it is below as well.
Also in the pouch are a few read items, and an action memo authorizing the War Powers resolution for Tunisia that the office would like you to approve today. Ops can send a courier over to pick up the action memo later today.
12:00 UK FM Hague
12:15 Egyptian FM Amr
12:30 Israeli PM Netanyahu
1:15 French FM Fabius
1:30 Saudi FM Saud al-Faisal
2:00 Somali Former Transitional President Sharif
2:15 Libyan PM-elect Abu-Shakour
2:30 Turkish FM Davutoglu
3:00 Somali President Mohamoud (T)
-Moroccan King is still pending.
-NEW CALL: King Juan Carlos of Spain called today and offered anytime today or tomorrow. His office relayed that it is a personal call inquiring after the status of the Embassies in the Middle East. We are working on a call sheet.
The State Department’s records include a September 14, 2012, email from Clinton advisor Sidney Blumenthal to Clinton in which Blumenthal passes along a controversial article by his son Max and attacks then-Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney:
From: Sidney Blumenthal
Sent: Friday, September 14, 2012 10:48 AM
Subject: Re: m.guardian.co.uk
Max knows how to do this and fearless. Hope it’s useful and gets around, especially in the Middle East.
Keep speaking and clarifying. Your statements have been strong. Once through this phase, you might clarify history of US policy on Arab Spring, what has been accomplished, US interests at stake, varying relations with Libya & Egypt, etc.
Romney, of course, is contemptible, but contemptible on a level not seen in past contemptible political figures. His menace comes from his emptiness. His greed is not limited simply to mere filthy lucre. The mixture of greedy ambition and hollowness is combustible. He will do and say anything to get ahead, and while usually self-immolating he is also destructive. Behind his blandness lies boundless ignorance, ignited by consistently wretched judgment. His recent statements are of a piece with everything he has done from naming Ryan to his welfare ads, etc.
The Blumenthal email includes a link to an article by his son Max Blumenthal that suggests that American conservatives, Zionists and the Israel government were behind the Internet video that was falsely linked by Clinton and Barack Obama to the Benghazi attack. Clinton responded with an approving, “Your Max is a Mitzvah.” Another email shows that Mrs. Clinton wanted three copies of the Max Blumenthal Benghazi video article printed out. (Max Blumenthal is a leftist journalist known for his attacks on Israel and American foreign policy. In January, 2015, he is quoted calling American Sniper hero Chris Kyle an “unrepentant, sadistic killer.”)
In addition to Blumenthal’s attack on Romney, the newly released documents also include an email chain forwarded to Clinton from her former State Department deputy chief of staff Jacob Sullivan in which Robert Bergdahl, the father of alleged Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl, relates the death of U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens to what the senior Bergdahl calls the “‘Crusade’ paradigm:”
Please convey our abiding condolences to everyone in the Foreign Service. Your service is most notable and almost invisible. Our Nation is stumbling through a very volatile world. The “Crusade” paradigm will never be forgotten in this part of the world and we force our Diplomats to carry a lot of baggage around while walking on eggshells.
Be very careful my friend!
I’m very sorry,
After receiving the email from Mr. Bergdahl, Mrs. Clinton orders a response (which is not disclosed) be prepared.
The new documents also contain an email from former Ambassador Joe Wilson to Clinton concerning the Benghazi attack, in which he suggests the military is being compromised “Christian Dominionists” in the U.S. military:
From: Joe Wilson
Sent: Saturday, September 15, 2012 10:27 AM
Subject: From Joe Wilson
Dear Hillary, …
Glen Doherty [CIA contractor killed in the Benghazi attack] was a fellow member of the Military Religious Freedom Advisory Board, which fights to ensure that our military is not further compromised by the Christian Dominionists who seek to turn it into an instrument of their religious zealotry, an army for Christ rather than for the defense of our nation. He was invaluable in helping us uncover several cases where religious indoctrination was taking place under the guise of military training….
“These new Benghazi emails are disturbing and show why Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration had to be forced to disclose them,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “Hillary Clinton, despite knowing that terrorists were responsible for the attack, allowed her spokesman to go to the Arab world and blame an Internet film. Hillary Clinton trafficked in fantastical conspiracy theories that suggested both American conservatives and Israel were to blame for the Benghazi attack and jihadist violence in the Muslim world. And the crazed email from Sidney Blumenthal shows that she was taking direction on her Benghazi spin based upon attack-style presidential campaign politics. Finally, the ‘I just got up’ email shows that, smack dab in the middle of the Benghazi crisis, Hillary Clinton fell behind and may have not been fully briefed as she began an intense round of phone calls to foreign leaders.”
Judicial Watch’s FOIA lawsuits filed in 2014 and 2015 forced the release of these records.
The first lawsuit, filed on September 4, 2014, (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:14-cv-01511)), sought:
- All records concerning notes, updates, or reports created in response to the September 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. This request includes, but is not limited to, notes taken by then Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton or employees of the Office of the Secretary of State during the attack and its immediate aftermath.
The second FOIA lawsuit, filed on May 6, 2015, (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:15-cv-00692), sought:
- All emails of former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton regarding the September 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. The timeframe for this request is September 11, 2012 to January 31, 2013.
As Judicial Watch chief investigator reporter Micah Morrison detailed last month, Sidney Blumenthal advised Clinton on Libya (and may have had business interests there). The JW report also disclosed how Hillary Clinton emailed classified information to Blumenthal in response to his lobbying for Amb. Wilson’s efforts to secure taxpayer financing for an energy project in Africa. Hillary Clinton’s contacts with Blumenthal, who was also a highly paid employee of the Clinton Foundation, should have been subject to State Department ethics reviews for conflicts of interest, as promised by Mrs. Clinton. For example, in January 2009, Hillary Clinton promised President Obama and United States Senate considering her confirmation that:
If confirmed as Secretary of State, I will not participate personally and substantially in any particular matter that has a direct and predictable effect upon this foundation, unless I first obtain a written waiver or qualify for a regulatory exemption.