The news media has been subjecting Hillary Clinton to a fair share of scrutiny since it became public knowledge that she had sent private emails and used her own email server while Secretary of State.
It has recently come to light that her management style even rubbed off on State Department aides, who also used private emails to communicate with her - a breach of security protocol that partly got a U.S. ambassador fired.
Something that has been lingering in the national conversation since the 9/11 anniversary terrorist attacks on the Benghazi compound in 2012 has been: What was Hillary Clinton's exact response to the attack on the State Department facility?
The New York Times recently issued a report on Hillary Clinton's Benghazi emails, although it admits that is was “not permitted” to review them in full.
The article cites the discovery that her aides were also using private emails in communications. It denies that the former Secretary had issued any kind of “stand down” order, although it is a fact that she failed to convene the Counterterrorism Security Group, as was protocol in such emergency situations.
The fallout from the failure to rescue four American servicemen who were killed during the 8-hour siege, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens, information officer Sean Smith, and two security personnel with Navy SEAL backgrounds Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty, even landed Mrs. Clinton at Congressional hearings.
The New York Times article sheds some telling light on Madame Secretary's opinion of what really mattered during the hearings, this coming via email:
It was a grueling hearing. A month after the September 2012 attack on the United States diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, House Republicans grilled a top State Department official about security lapses at the outpost.
Later that day, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton tapped out an email to a close adviser: “Did we survive the day?” she wrote.
“Survive, yes,” the adviser emailed back, adding that he would continue to gauge reaction the next morning.
“Did we survive the day?” An interesting choice of words from a public official who also openly blurted out, 'What difference, at this point, does it make?' during the hearings regarding what precisely led to the deaths of the four American servicemen.
Ironically, her decision to obfuscate and dodge accountability to the public by using private emails may be actually what has allowed her to “survive” an investigation relatively unscathed.
This appears to be the case, despite the fact that the able House investigator Trey Gowdy is now demanding she turn her server over or face the 'full powers of the House.' It would be quite a turn of events if Mrs. Clinton provided the transparency that her powerful position demanded.
Not only did Mrs. Clinton “survive” the hearings, by all appearances, she's gearing up for a 2016 run. As far as much of the media is concerned, the Benghazi issue is over. Hillary Clinton can proceed without worry, given that there aren't any glaring smoking guns to point at her mishandling of the terrorist attack when it happened.
“Did we survive the day?” Yes, an interesting choice of words, and an apt question, indeed. One that four American servicemen at Benghazi never got the chance to ask.