Comments Subscribe to Personal Liberty News Feed Subscribe to Personal Liberty

Official: Intel Leaders Edited Libya Info

WASHINGTON, (UPI) — The intelligence community made substantive revisions to talking points about the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, a government official said.

Shawn Turner, a spokesman for the director of National Intelligence, said Monday the unclassified talking points used by government officials who spoke about the deadly Sept. 11 attack on the diplomatic mission were not substantively changed by any agency outside of the intelligence community, CNN reported.

The attack resulted in the death of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other diplomatic employees.

Republicans’ already-withering criticism of the talking points intensified Friday after a closed-door House Intelligence Committee hearing with former CIA Director David Petraeus.

Some Republican congressional members suggested change came from the White House, the Justice Department or another agency.

The initial version included information linking individuals involved in the attack to al-Qaida, a senior U.S. official familiar with the draft told CNN. When the document was sent to the intelligence community for review, a decision was made to change “al-Qaida” to “extremists” for intelligence and legal reasons, the official said.

“First, the information about individuals linked to al-Qaida was derived from classified sources,” the official said. “Second, when links were so tenuous — as they still are — it makes sense to be cautious before pointing fingers so you don’t set off a chain of circular and self-reinforcing assumptions. Third, it is important to be careful not to prejudice a criminal investigation in its early stages.”

Turner said the intelligence community “made substantive, analytical changes before the talking points were sent to government agency partners for their feedback. There were no substantive changes made to the talking points after they left the intelligence community.”

The House intelligence panel indicated it wasn’t satisfied with Turner’s explanation.

“The statement released [Monday] by the DNI’s spokesman regarding how the intelligence community’s talking points were changed gives a new explanation that differs significantly from information provided in testimony to the committee last week,” said committee spokeswoman Susan Phalen, adding that the panel looked forward to discussion the matter “as soon as possible to understand how the DNI reached this conclusion and why leaders of the intelligence community testified late last week that they were unaware of who changed the talking points.”

UPI - United Press International, Inc.

Since 1907, United Press International (UPI) has been a leading provider of critical information to media outlets, businesses, governments and researchers worldwide.

Facebook Conversations

Join the Discussion:
View Comments to “Official: Intel Leaders Edited Libya Info”

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

Is there news related to personal liberty happening in your area? Contact us at


Sign Up For Personal Liberty Digest™!

PL Badge

Welcome to,
America's #1 Source for Libertarian News!

To join our group of freedom-loving individuals and to get alerts as well as late-breaking conservative news from Personal Liberty Digest™...

Privacy PolicyYou can opt out at any time. We protect your information like a mother hen. We will not sell or rent your email address to anyone for any reason.