OTR Interviews

Sen. Graham: 'The dam's about to break on Benghazi'

With 'whistle-blower' witnesses set to testify, will questions about what happened during the Benghazi attacks, an alleged cover-up and Hillary Clinton's actions be answered?

 

This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," May 6, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: A whistle-blower, and no ordinary one. He was the number two diplomat in Libya at the time of the Benghazi attack, and he is now telling Congress everybody in the mission thought it was a terrorist attack from the get-go!

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

REP. DARRELL ISSA, R- CALIF.: The CIA knew it was a terrorist attack. The deputy chief of mission, Gregory Hicks, knew it was a terror attack. The ambassador, before he died, one of the last words he ever said is, We're under attack.

RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Isn't it obvious, as we look back, that they weren't even prepared for an attack?

SUSAN RICE, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: What happened initially was that there was a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired in Cairo as a consequence of the video.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Witnesses set to tell lawmakers that on the night of the attack, September 11 now, then secretary of state Hillary Clinton tried to cut the department's own counterterrorism bureau out of the loop.

HILLARY CLINTON, THEN-SECRETARY OF STATE: The fact is, we have four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided they'd go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It makes a big difference. It makes a difference in who's responsible for these men's death.

LIMBAUGH: No, they didn't want the ambassador to die. No, they didn't want these other people to die. But they wanted something else more.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Despite four-and-a-half months after the tragic thing, Secretary Clinton still came to the United States Congress and testified that the people on the ground made the decisions about security. That never happened.

LIMBAUGH: So when people did die, they had a panic circumstance to deal with, and that's why we've got all these cockamamie explanations for it!

(END VIDEO CLIP)

VAN SUSTEREN: And Senator Lindsey Graham says when you hear more from the State Department whistleblowers this week, it's going to make you mad. Senator Graham joins us. Nice to see you, sir.

SEN. LINDSEY GRAHAM, R-S.C.: It's going to make you mad.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, before we get to the question of the State Department whistleblowers testifying on Wednesday...

GRAHAM: Right.

VAN SUSTEREN: ... we have information that people from the CIA want to come out and testify, but they've been told by the CIA director Brennan specifically they will be polygraphed if they are tied to this. Do you have any information to corroborate that?

GRAHAM: I've heard that same story. I know there are some CIA agents reaching out. They feel frustrated. The CIA generally got this right, and they feel frustrated about what happened that night before and after. So we'll see where this goes.

VAN SUSTEREN: Are these CIA agents who are on the ground in Benghazi that night, or are these CIA agents -- people -- CIA here in Washington?

GRAHAM: It's my belief that at least one of them was on the ground, but time will tell.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, now...

GRAHAM: The dam's about to break on Benghazi.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. You wrote a letter May 6th to the State Department -- I mean, March 15th to the State Department. Today you're finally getting one back. And it's from the -- Thomas Gibbons, acting assistant secretary, legislative affairs.

And he says, among other things, that -- that -- he says, "The department appreciates your interest in talking to the five State Department diplomatic security agents who survived the attack. At the same time, we have serious concerns about the welfare and want to be careful not to interfere with the FBI's investigation of the attack."

They go on to say, "Should their identities become public, they may become targets, putting their lives, as well as those of their families and the people they protect, at increased risk."

Your response, sir?

GRAHAM: Completely unacceptable. The five people who were diplomatic security have never been talked to by the Congress. It's our job to oversee and provide oversight to the executive branch.

And look what's happened. Thank God for the House, Jason Chaffetz and Darrell Issa pushing this thing. So no, we want the survivors to come forward, and we'll protect their identity. We want to know what happened.

VAN SUSTEREN: Did you -- did -- have -- did the ARB talk to these people, do you know?

GRAHAM: I have no idea. All I know is that what we're knowing -- what we're finding out is that the story told by the State Department, Susan Rice, the president himself was so completely wrong and false.

There's a reason. Why did Susan Rice and the president push this narrative that it was a spontaneous event caused by a hateful video? Because if the truth had come out seven weeks before an election this was an al Qaeda-inspired pre-planned attack, it would undercut the narrative...

VAN SUSTEREN: All right...

GRAHAM: ... politically that bin Laden's dead, we're all safer. Political manipulation is rampant here. It is no accident that the story told by the Washington folks, including the president, was beneficial to the president and disconnected from reality because we can't talk to anybody who actually lived through it. Now you got a guy coming forward called Greg Hicks...

VAN SUSTEREN: Now, you're the first one who spoke to Greg Hicks.

GRAHAM: Yes.

VAN SUSTEREN: You spoke to him in March. What did he -- what was he likely talking -- like, why hadn't he come forward before March?

GRAHAM: One, he's a professional diplomat, doesn't want to get involved in politics, but he's a man of conscience. He knows what happened that night. He's the last guy to talk to Chris Stevens. He knows it was a terrorist attack from day one.

And what baffles everybody that lived through this is how Washington could tell a story about what they lived through so different than what actually happened on the ground.

And there's no other explanation other than the people in Washington telling the story had political motivations because the people on the ground are telling us what they lived through is completely different than what the president told the people about.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right, Gregory -- Gregory Hicks...

GRAHAM: Told America about.

VAN SUSTEREN: Gregory Hicks, who's number two, right below the ambassador in Libya...

GRAHAM: Yes, the number two.

VAN SUSTEREN: Why did -- why did he wait until March to come forward? What did (INAUDIBLE)

GRAHAM: People -- well, the same reason that everybody feels chilled. I've been asking for survivors to come forward, people who were involved, not just survivors, and every agency in the government is stonewalling. These guys are whistleblowers. They came forward out of conscience.

Greg Hicks knew that Chris Stevens was being thrown under the bus. Chris should have never been there. That's the new narrative. Well, they knew he was in Benghazi. So the people who knew Chris Stevens, who lived through this attack, believe that what they went through has been misrepresented.

VAN SUSTEREN: All right. Well, there's a -- there's a note from the State Department, one of my notes, saying that Gregory Hicks has an axe to grind against the State Department. That's why he's doing this now.

GRAHAM: Well, I think Greg Hicks is going to tell a story consistent with what we now know to be the truth. And the only axe to grind I think anybody has here, including me, is that you can't let your government lie to you. You have four Americans died, and the stories told by the highest levels of our government about how they died was a bunch of garbage.

VAN SUSTEREN: We will go to the hearing Wednesday and watch it and monitor it.

GRAHAM: And there's more coming.

VAN SUSTEREN: Thank you, sir. Nice to see you, senator.

GRAHAM: Thank you.