Su­san Rice some­how man­ages to make Benghazi cover-up seem mi­nor

The Washington Times Daily - - POLITICS - BY CHARLES HURT Charles Hurt can be reached at churt@wash­ing­ton­; fol­low him on Twit­ter via @charleshurt.

Well, that ex­plains the deaf­en­ing si­lence from Pres­i­dent Obama.

All th­ese months, it turns out, it was his right­hand hatchet gal and ex­posed se­rial pre­var­i­ca­tor Su­san Rice who was be­hind the scenes in his ad­min­is­tra­tion work­ing all the levers of the most pow­er­ful es­pi­onage ma­chine on planet Earth to spy on Mr. Obama’s po­lit­i­cal en­e­mies.

This is jaw-drop­ping, bomb­shell in­for­ma­tion. Not be­cause it re­veals Su­san “Benghazi was about a video” Rice to be a liar. We al­ready knew that.

Not be­cause it ex­posed the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion as the most nakedly par­ti­san pres­i­dency in mod­ern his­tory, will­ing to use even the most sa­cred pow­ers of the fed­eral gov­ern­ment for po­lit­i­cal pur­poses. We al­ready knew that too.

What is so as­ton­ish­ing about the reve­la­tion that Ms. Rice was the one un­mask­ing Don­ald Trump and his cam­paign be­fore, dur­ing and af­ter he won the pres­i­dency is that it doesn’t get any closer to Barack Obama him­self.

Ms. Rice was Mr. Obama’s na­tional se­cu­rity ad­viser, one of his clos­est aides. They spoke all the time. She worked di­rectly for him. Here she was spy­ing on Mr. Obama’s po­lit­i­cal en­e­mies while in daily con­tact with him at the very height of the most con­tentious pres­i­den­tial elec­tion in mem­ory. You don’t think she and the pres­i­dent dis­cussed this?

The reve­la­tion that Ms. Rice was the oper­a­tor be­hind the spy­ing an­swers just one ques­tion. But it raises a thou­sand more.

When, ex­actly, did Ms. Rice start us­ing the U.S. gov­ern­ment’s spy op­er­a­tion as a weapon against Mr. Obama’s po­lit­i­cal op­po­nents?

What con­ver­sa­tions did she have with the pres­i­dent about the in­tel gleaned about Mr. Trump and other po­lit­i­cal en­e­mies of Mr. Obama?

As was asked of an ear­lier pres­i­dent amid far smaller crimes: What did the pres­i­dent know, and when did he know it?

What other op­po­nents run­ning for the Repub­li­can nom­i­na­tion was the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion spy­ing on? Were any of those po­lit­i­cal en­e­mies “un­masked” and dis­sem­i­nated across gov­ern­ment agen­cies? Was any of that in­tel­li­gence leaked to the press?

Did the Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion spy on Sen. Bernie San­ders dur­ing the long, messy Demo­cratic pri­mary, when the Ver­mont so­cial­ist re­fused to get out of the way for Hil­lary Clin­ton? Re­mem­ber, we now know the lengths the en­tire Demo­cratic Na­tional Com­mit­tee went to rig that pri­mary for Mrs. Clin­ton.

If there was noth­ing wrong with “un­mask­ing” the iden­ti­ties of Mr. Obama’s po­lit­i­cal op­po­nents and dis­sem­i­nat­ing the in­tel, Ms. Rice, why did you flat out lie about it on na­tional tele­vi­sion last month?

“I know noth­ing about this” is not ex­actly a ro­bust de­fense of one’s ac­tions.

Most of the me­dia, of course, is so des­per­ate to de­stroy Mr. Trump and cover up any­thing that might re­flect poorly on Mr. Obama that they would rather talk about phan­tom “Rus­sia” con­nec­tions in­stead.

Fine. In­ves­ti­gate Rus­sia all you want. Even if that in­quiry bears fruit, it will be about as scan­dalous as Richard Nixon go­ing to China. But an ad­min­is­tra­tion ac­tively spy­ing on po­lit­i­cal op­po­nents dur­ing a pres­i­den­tial elec­tion, un­mask­ing U.S. cit­i­zens and then pu­n­ish­ing them with se­lec­tive leaks to the press? That is a real scan­dal.

And a con­sti­tu­tion cri­sis that raises dire ques­tions about whether any Amer­i­can cit­i­zen is safe from the es­pi­onage thug­gery of the po­lit­i­cally pow­er­ful.

Su­san Rice

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