From “Petraeus Says U. S. Tried to Avoid Tipping Off Terrorists After Libya Attack,” Eric Schmitt, NYT:
“David H. Petraeus…told lawmakers on Friday…that the administration refrained from saying it suspected that the perpetrators of the attack were Al Qaeda affiliates and sympathizers to avoid tipping off the groups.”
But the local Al Qaeda group Ansar al-Sharia proudly announced they had carried out the attack just a few hours after it happened. So just in case they thought we didn’t know, they told us. You can’t tip off someone when they are publicly boasting.
The other aspect of Petraeus’ argument that makes no sense is that the original talking points that referenced Al Qaeda were drafted by intelligence professionals and later changed to say “extremists” by “someone outside the the intelligence community,” according to Congressman Peter King (R-NY).
Petraeus’ claim would be much more credible if some political, diplomatic, or military person wrote talking points saying Al Qaeda, and the intelligence community changed them. But here we have the reverse.