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Daily Israel Report

White House Admits Libya Attack was Terrorism

No longer calling Benghazi attack "spontaneous," spokesman Carney says it is "self evident" that it was terrorism.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 9/20/2012, 9:51 PM

Jay Carney
Jay Carney
Reuters

The White House, after insisting for eight days that the deadly attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi was a "spontaneous" act, conceded Thursday that it was "self evident" that it was an act of terror.

"It is, I think, self evident that what happened in Benghazi was a terrorist attack," White House Spokesman Jay Carney said. "Our embassy was attacked violently and the result was four deaths of American officials. That is self evident."

Fox News reported the news Thursday in its website's main headline, noting that earlier in the week, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland declined to label the attack terrorism.

Carney's statement to reporters comes after the director of the National Counterterrorism Center testified at a Senate hearing Wednesday that the strike was indeed a "terrorist attack." Matt Olsen, director of the NCTC, said: "Yes, they were killed in the course of a terrorist attack on our embassy."

Olsen said, however that U.S. officials have no specific intelligence about "significant advanced planning or coordination" for the attack.

"The administration is still sticking by its claim that they don't have evidence the assault was pre-planned. But Carney for the first time Thursday called it terrorism -- while downplaying the fact that he was doing so," wrote Fox News.