In leaked emails published by BuzzFeed this week, former Secretary of State Colin Powell slammed the Republican outrage and years-long investigation into the terror attack on the U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, referring to it as a “stupid witchhunt.”
“Benghazi is a stupid witch hunt. Basic fault falls on a courageous ambassador who [thought] Libyans now love me and I am ok in this very vulnerable place,” Powell wrote in an email from December 2015 to former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice.
Powell was referring to Ambassador Chris Stevens, one of the four Americans killed in the September 11, 2012 attack.
The website DCLeaks.com — which has reported, but not confirmed, ties to Russian intelligence services — obtained Powell’s emails. It may be the latest example of a Russian entity potentially trying to influence the US presidential election — in July, the FBI said it believed Russia was behind the hack of the Democratic National Committee’s internal emails right before they party’s convention.
Powell has confirmed the authenticity of his emails to NBC News.
In the email, Powell directed blame for the attack on Ambassador Stevens and the State Department.
“Blame also rests on his leaders and supports back here. Pat Kennedy, Intel community, DS and yes [Hillary Clinton],” Powell wrote.
“Completely agree,” Rice replied.
“Let me know when you’re in town and we’ll have that glass of wine (or two).” Rice added.