A top foreign correspondent at the New York Times said Friday that the Obama administration deliberately downplayed al Qaeda’s strength in the run-up to the 2012 presidential election, reported by the Weekly Standard.

“The overall narrative that I think was being pushed to the press, and if you look back at the editorials that were done when that trove came out, was an image of bin Laden isolated, he had lost control of this group,” Rukmini Callimachi said during an event at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, referring to the 17 hand-picked documents released by the Obama administration in May of 2012.

Callimachi’s triggered the following question from Kim Dozier, a former top correspondent for the Associated Press and CBS, and current executive editor of the Cipher Brief: “Do you think that was something that was kept from the public’s view because it revealed that there had to be reams of communication going back and forth, which means U.S. intelligence, Western intelligence, was missing this?”

“Think back to when bin Laden was killed. It was 2011, it was right before a major campaign season. I don’t want to underplay the role that the killing of Osama bin Laden had,” said Callimachi. “But I think that was theorized into something much bigger.”

“The head of the organization has been killed, and now—these are literally quotes that I would get: the organization has been ‘decimated,’ the organization is in ‘disarray,’ the organization is ‘on the run,’” she continued. “At the same time that we were preparing to pull out troops from Iraq and Afghanistan, I think that it was important to portray this as a problem that no longer existed.”

In November, the Trump administration released roughly 470,000 files that were captured in the Abbottabad raid. The Obama administration only released a few hundred, despite one official’s description of the haul as enough to fill a “small college library.”

When Callimachi was covering West Africa in 2011, Obama administration officials and others told her that al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), which had just taken over the northern half of Mali, “The narrative I would get is that . . . it had opportunistically taken the al Qaeda name in order to have prestige and scare people, and that in fact those people were just criminals,” she said.

“Suddenly, my worldview, which had been informed by officials . . . started to fall apart,” she said.

“In fact, the new trove that has now come out confirms very much what I was seeing in Mali, which is not just real connective tissue, but connective tissue to the point of [these affiliates] being micro managed from Afghanistan and Pakistan,” she said. “Very minor personnel decisions are being decided by the group thousands of miles away.”

Thomas Joscelyn and Bill Roggio of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies have been pushing for the full release of bin Laden documents since 2012. Joscelyn said the administration attached a narrative to those files that al Qaeda was “on the decline” and that “there was no cohesion” among terror groups fighting from West Africa to the Middle East.

I would like to say I’m shocked by this news…but I’m not. The Obama administration was going to do everything in their power to get Obama re-elected. Obama had promised before his first term that he was going to end the war in Afghanistan and have all troops pulled out by the end of his presidency. Everyone quickly realized that it was not a smart plan to pre-emptively let the world know our plans, so they had to result to misleading the public by only releasing documents helpful to the administration, NOT the American people. Shame on you, President Obama.

Reference Tags
LIKE us to get conservative news:
  • Adrian Johnson

    This does not surprise me. However it is sad confirmation that MSM like the NYT and the WAPO can no longer be trusted. And they wonder why so many ordinary Americans actively search out “alternative news” sites.

    • Gerry Costa

      “No longer be trusted” — we have NOT been able to rely on anything that came from our biased, lame MSM since the early 60s.

      • Myke Britt


  • reagangs

    From the most “TRANSPARENT ADMINISTRATION IN AMERICAN HISTORY” !!! Another one of Obozo’s failed “legacies”.

    • norinco

      You mean “The Most Trans-Parent Government Ever”

  • dan690

    Did they also help count his fraudulent votes?

    • old codger

      Hmmmmmm, a distinctive possibility!!!

  • ernst

    Everything about the 8 years of Obama administration was a lie. Everything except Obama’s desire to damage the United States.
    If Mitt Romney had shown the strength to focus on the Benghazi attack in the third debate, he would have won the election. Obama was fortunate to run against very weak and inept Republicans, McCain and Romney.

    • Gerry Costa

      In my opinion — Romney took a Sonny Liston type dive. And the only good thing mcphony mccain had going for him was Sarah Palin !!!!!

      • ernst

        We agree.

  • 4low2go

    Typical from the POS POTUS

  • Gerry Costa

    That’s funny — “helpful to the administration NOT the American people”. That dirtbag along with his whole corrupt administration in 8 longgggg years didn’t do ANYTHING helpful to Americans only to himself and our enemies in muslim countries. We need to see ALL the documentation and we need to recover the so-called bin laden’s body that was sooo rapidly dumped into the ocean and see who it really is.

    • Robert Kahlcke

      Hope he was embalmed with pigs blood, sorry osama, no 72 little boys for you.

  • Big Ed

    I find it incredible that almost 100% of the people, including the media, can stand in front of a group and repeat lies told by Obama in a two or three hour long speech, and yet they act surprised when a “new” lie pops up. After about two years into Obama’s presidency, I had already picked up on the fact that if he was talking, he was lying. So, whenever he started to talk, I wasted no time trying to decide whether he was lying or not, I spent my time trying to decide why he was lying to us again. I think he was just a congenital liar-simply couldn’t help himself. It happens to a lot of Democrats.

  • gary price

    The shame is on the MSM also. From the day Obama announced his being a candidate the Media began discarding its neutrality. They cannot be trusted anymore.

    • SerfCityHereWeCome

      No, the media began discarding their neutrality early in FDR’s first term.

  • 7818TD

    So they “aided & abetted” saddling us with the most un-American person to ever sit in the Oval Office, bringing pain, suffering and untold damage to our great land. We have been left with Obama’s filth, which will take years to eliminate.

  • Falcon22

    Surely this is not a surprise. obama and his administration lied about almost everything

    • old codger

      The BA$TARD probably even lied about his golf scores!!

  • Jmanjo

    The turkey lied about a heck of a lot more than that and should have not been the president at all!

    • Babsan

      Muslim FRAUD ,Barry Soetoro aka Barack Hussein Obama an America hating PIG

  • domar1938

    Looking across the caskets of the 4 dead from Benghazi, “it was a video and we will bring the perpetrator to justice.” A lie re-iterated by a number in his administration including Clinton and Rice. And yet the liberals don’t think he did anything wrong. WOW just WOW.

  • DonRS

    When will thinking people finally admit, the Obama administration was little more than an anti-American PR machine. EVERY THING was about showmanship, smooth talking PR gibberish!

  • mbnick

    Hardly news and just more proof of how gullible and no info the Obama moocher base is.

  • Donna E Turner

    Treason is the flavor of the Left.