Photo credit: AFP/Getty Images
During the taping of “The Daily Show,” President Barack Obama told Jon Stewart “if four Americans get killed, it’s not optimal” while discussing the deadly terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
Stewart had asked him the following question, according to the pool report: “Is part of the investigation helping the communication between these divisions? Not just what happened in Benghazi, but what happened within…Because I would say, even you would admit, it was not the optimal response, at least to the American people, as far as all of us being on the same page.”
“Here’s what I’ll say,” the president reportedly responded. “If four Americans get killed, it’s not optimal. We’re going to fix it.”
“And what happens, during the course of a presidency, is that the government is a big operation and any given time something screws up. And you make sure that you find out what’s broken and you fix it. Whatever else I have done throughout the course of my presidency the one thing that I’ve been absolutely clear about is that America’s security comes, and the American people need to know exactly how I make decisions when it comes to war, peace, security, and protecting Americans. And they will continue to get that over the next four years of my presidency.”
The Huffington Post provides some additional quotes from the pool report. However, you may notice that HuffPo left out Obama’s “if four Americans get killed, it’s not optimal” line:
“We weren’t confused about the fact that four Americans had been killed,” Obama told Stewart while discussing the attack, which took the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens. “I wasn’t confused about the fact that we needed to ramp up diplomatic security around the world right after it happened.”
“I wasn’t confused about the fact that we had to investigate exactly what happened so it gets fixed,” he continued. “And I wasn’t confused about the fact that we’re going to hunt down whoever did it.”
In fact, the news site actually includes the rest of paragraph where Obama made the “optimal” remark, but removes that one sentence and starts quoting in the middle of the president’s statement, according to The Atlantic Wire’s account of the pool report.
“The National Counter Terrorism Center only told Congress that it was a terrorist attack eight days after the assault took place,” The Washington Examiner’s Joel Gehrke writes.
Additionally, “Within 24 hours of the 9-11 anniversary attack on the United States consulate in Benghazi, U.S. intelligence agencies had strong indications al Qaeda–affiliated operatives were behind the attack, and had even pinpointed the location of one of those attackers,” according to a report from The Daily Beast.
Here are the four Americans who were killed in the “not optimal” terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi:
U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens. Photo credit: AP
Diplomat Sean Smith. Photo source: Global Dispatch
Former Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods. Photo source: ABC News
Former Navy SEAL Glen Doherty. Photo credit: AP
Featured image via AFP/Getty Images.