The Straits Times
Published on Jan 24, 2013

Emotional Clinton angrily denies Benghazi cover-up


WASHINGTON (AFP) - United States (US) Secretary of State Hillary Clinton came out guns blazing on Wednesday, dismissing Republican charges of a cover-up over the deadly Benghazi attack and warning the world needs to combat rising extremism.

At times emotional and often fiery, Mrs Clinton gave no ground to congressional critics still seeking to determine why the administration at first blamed the Sept 11 assault on a protest outside the US mission in eastern Libya.

"With all due respect, the fact is, we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or because of guys out for a walk one night and (who) decided to go kill some Americans?" she told a tense Senate hearing.

"What difference does it make?" she demanded, thumping her fist on the table as Senator Ron Johnson repeatedly asked her why the administration had initially linked the attack to protests against an anti-Islam Internet video.