Lindsey Graham looking increasingly Schizophrenic

The very last sentence of an article by Josh Rogin at the Daily Beast about a strong rift between Secretary of State John Kerry and National Security Adviser Susan Rice either deserves to be the first sentence or the subject of headline in a different article. Here is that sentence, which involves Senator Lindsey Graham (RINO-SC), via the Daily Beast:

Asked about the Kerry-Rice split on Egypt policy, Graham said, “I’m in the Susan Rice camp.”

Graham: Looks increasingly schizophrenic.

Graham: Looks increasingly schizophrenic.

That split, according to Rogin, has to do with Rice’s desire to side with ousted Egyptian president Mohammed Mursi against the current government there and Kerry’s unwillingness to do so.

When you throw the subject of Benghazi into the mix, Graham may come close to sounding schizophrenic, especially if Mursi was involved, as is looking increasingly more likely, not less so. Last year, Graham – along with Senators John McCain (RINO-AZ) and Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) – led the charge to block Rice’s nomination as Secretary of State. The reason stemmed from Rice’s assertion on September 16, 2012 – made on five separate Sunday talk shows – that a video was behind the attacks in Benghazi.

Kerry’s behavior during a visit to Cairo just two weeks ago (one day prior to Mursi’s scheduled trial date) appears to be the source of a specific bone of contention. Again, via Rogin at the DB:

Before Secretary of State John Kerry’s recent trip to Cairo, National Security Adviser Susan Rice told him to make strong statements in public and private about the trial of deposed President Mohamed Morsi. On his own, Kerry decided to disregard the White House’s instructions.

The tension between the national security adviser and the secretary of state spilled over into public view in the past week, when Rice laid out her critical appraisal of the Egyptian government, which contradicted Kerry’s assessment that Egypt was “on the path to democracy.” The now public rift has been simmering behind the scenes for months and illustrates the strikingly divergent Egypt policies the White House and the State Department are pursuing.

The turf battles and internal confusion are hampering the administration’s approach to Egypt, say lawmakers, experts, and officials inside both governments.

“John Kerry doesn’t agree with Susan Rice on big portions of our Egypt policy, and he made a deliberate and conscious decision not to mention Morsi in his Cairo meetings,” an administration official told The Daily Beast. “Susan Rice wasn’t happy about it.”{emphasis ours}

As someone in the Senate who has been demanding answers on Benghazi, Graham is coming off as quite clueless about the likely involvement of the Mursi regime. The degree to which Egypt’s then Muslim Brotherhood government was involved is still to be determined but it was involved to some degree. If one looks at nothing else to reach this conclusion, consider Mursi’s connection to the founder of the Jamal Network, a group suspected of being involved in the 9/11/12 attacks in Benghazi.

Rice: Lindsey Graham now "in (her) camp".

Rice: Lindsey Graham now “in (her) camp”.

Graham recently threatened to put a hold on all of the Obama administration’s nominees until access to Benghazi witnesses is granted. The Senator from South Carolina lifted two of those holds; one was that of former U.S. Ambassador to Egypt Anne Patterson, whom Obama is seeking to promote. Egyptians who side with Gen. Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and support Mursi’s removal have accused Patterson of being a Muslim Brotherhood “stooge”. Her dealings while ambassador definitely warrant further scrutiny (as does Graham’s decision to lift that particular hold).

As a representative of the White House, Rice’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt is a direct reflection of Barack Obama’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.

Graham’s positions on Egypt and Benghazi are irreconcilably incongruent and schizophrenic in light of what is easily known.


, ,