Hillary Clinton responds to critics in Benghazi chapter in 'Hard Choices' memoir

By Daniel S Levine,

In her memoir on her time as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton spends a full chapter on the September 2012 attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi. She answers directly to her critics, refusing to politicize the incident, which left four Americans dead.

Politico obtained the 34-page chapter from Hard Choices, which comes out on June 10, and published several excerpts.

“Those who exploit this tragedy over and over as a political tool minimize the sacrifice of those who served our country,” Clinton writes, according to the site. “I will not be a part of a political slugfest on the backs of dead Americans. It’s just plain wrong, and it’s unworthy of our great country. Those who insist on politicizing the tragedy will have to do so without me.”

Clinton gave her most detailed account of the incident yet in the chapter. She did take responsibility and suggests that her opponents have manipulated the tragedy for partisan reasons. There is a “regrettable amount of misinformation, speculation, and flat-out deceit by some in politics and the media,” she wrote, adding that “a number of reputable sources continues to expand our understanding of these events.”

For the most part, Clinton goes step-by-step on the events of Sept. 11, 2012 and the immediate aftermath. She says that she did order an investigation nine days after the incident and implemented the suggestions put forth by a review board. In addition, she says that, as a former member of the Senate, she understands Congress’ role in getting answers, yet, “Many of these same people are a broken record about unanswered questions. But there is a difference between unanswered questions and unlistened to answers.”

CNN caught up with Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), the chairman of the new House committee that is investigating Benghazi to get his response to the chapter. “There is a time and a place for everything and her book tour is neither for me,” he said.

Gowdy has said in the past that he does want to speak with Clinton, but there are no meetings set.

Clinton’s book comes out as she is expected to run for president in 2016. Yesterday, she booked an appearance on Fox News for June 17.

image courtesy of Jennifer Graylock/INFphoto.com



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