Fox Continues To Push Falsehood About State Department Investigation Into Benghazi
Blog ››› ››› ZACHARY PLEAT
Fox News host Brian Kilmeade falsely asserted that State Department official Patrick Kennedy was not interviewed during an investigation into the September 2012 attack on a U.S. diplomatic facility in Benghazi, Libya that killed a U.S. ambassador and three security personnel. In fact, Kennedy was interviewed by the State Department's Accountability Review Board (ARB).
In a September 4 Fox & Friends interview with Samuel Katz and Fred Burton, authors of Under Fire: The Untold Story of the Attack in Benghazi, Kilmeade asked Burton who he would have interviewed had he been running the investigation into the attack. Kilmeade's questioning asserted that State Department Undersecretary for Management Patrick Kennedy was never interviewed about the attack:
KILMEADE: You want Patrick Kennedy, too?
BURTON: I think Patrick Kennedy should be interviewed. I think Patrick Kennedy is all over this case.
But Kennedy was interviewed by the ARB, which was conducted by Ambassador Thomas Pickering and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen. On May 12, Pickering told CNN's Candy Crowley "[w]e interviewed Pat Kennedy" in response to criticism from Republicans that the ARB report was incomplete. Furthermore, Congressman Gerald Connolly (D-VA) said during a May 8 House Oversight Committee hearing:
By the way, defend in statements that Undersecretary Kennedy was not interviewed by the ARB by Ambassador Pickering and Admiral Mullen. That is a misstatement of fact. He most certainly was. You can look it up. It is documented. He was interviewed, and he provided evidence. And that evidence was evaluated.
So it is not true that Undersecretary Kennedy was not part of that process. He most certainly was, and I would ask Mr. Chairman that the record so reflect.
Fox News host Greta Van Susteren even tweeted Rep. Connolly's statement at the hearing:
Despite this Benghazi myth being debunked months ago, Fox & Friends hosts and guests continue to insist that a top State Department official was never interviewed about the Benghazi attack just to dishonestly attack the Obama administration.