Pentagon Promises Probe Into Niger Ambush As McCain Threatens Subpoena Over Administration Inaction

Politico reports:

In the face of growing scrutiny, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Thursday said the type of attack that killed four U.S. troops in Niger earlier this month was “considered unlikely” and pledged to release the findings of a Pentagon investigation “as rapidly” as possible.

“I would just tell you that in this specific case contact was considered unlikely,” Mattis said of the ambush against members of the Army’s 3rd Special Forces Group, which is advising local anti-terror units in the region.

Mattis’ remarks come as the White House and Pentagon are taking heat from Senate Armed Services Chairman Sen. John McCain, who threatened early Thursday to issue subpoenas to get more information on the Oct. 4 incident, which has been blamed on militants allied with the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

McCain has slammed the Trump administration in recent days for not being forthcoming about the ambush, and asked again Thursday if the administration is sharing enough, he responded, “Of course not.”

  • Ham

    Well played Republicans. You’ll hardly see any of us screaming Niger!, Niger! Niger!

    • ByronK

      Isn’t that what Spencer did during his speech today?

  • nocadrummer

    “It’s Hillary’s Fault.” You just KNOW the GOP will try to pin it on her.

    • FuzzyOtter

      One can just hear the rallying cry of “Remember the Benghaziii!!!”

    • Cuberly Deux

      Actually on Mediaite the trollz are already blaming Obama for authorizing operations in Niger.

      • NowAnAgnostic

        Like we are to believe there was not enough time for the orange menace to cancel the operation if he did not believe it should proceed? No, gop, this is your operation. Accept it and live with it.

  • Frostbite

    Benghazi! Benghazi! Benghazi! Niger! Niger! Niger!

    • Wesinoregon

      Lock him up.

  • Pollos Hermanos

    Everybody hold your breath.

    Pasty white guys are going to have to continually pronounce Niger without screwing it up.

    • djcoastermark

      It could get interesting, at least to see them squirm in their uncomfortableness.

    • JP

      I’m black and back when I was in elementary school with mostly african americans, a few of us mis-pronounced it when first reading it.

      • Ham

        In second grade, I thought for a full three weeks that my new teacher was named Miss Booger. (Booker) it was a laugh riot.

        • JP

          lol. My point was I wouldn’t put the possibility on pasty white men per se as it can be confusing at first. Trump will definitely suck though

          • RaygunsGoZap

            He won’t mispronounce it so much a say it in an overly exaggerated Jamaican accent, which he thinks is what Africans sound like.

    • bkmn

      I hope a lot of Nigerian princes send them emails about their fortunes.

      • m_lp_ql_m

        SO RICH, THEY DON’T NEED A CAPS LOCK KEY.

        • bkmn

          yEs

      • bambinoitaliano

        I just want the Nigerian princers to scam off Putin’s $200 billion. That should keep him too busy to meddle in the US affairs.

        • Andrea King

          I expect Russian interference to continue. Frankly speaking, the American and European sanctions together have crippled Russia’s economy, and they’re not going to recover without coughing up Crimea (which they will not do).
          The result is that Russia will behave like a starving animal in a snare, lashing out for survival. US sanctions look to be holding no matter which party’s in Congress, so Russia will likely continue meddling in European countries’ elections. They will absolutely want Americans divided and set against one other while they do so.

    • Danieruw

      I’ll be happy if they don’t confuse Niger with Nigeria.

  • Max_1

    Happening now… LIVE.

    LIVE: Former President Obama Rally Speech 10/19/17 Campaigns for Ralph Northam in Virginia
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pimDqrG6DuY

    • Lars Littlefield

      It’s a major breath of fresh air just to see him again!

  • another_steve

    Our Commander-in-Chief (Zeus help us) is totally out of the loop.

    He’s much more interested in his daughter Ivanka’s breasts than he is in current military actions involving American troops.

    • ByronK

      He needs to stay away from both.

    • UrsusArctos 🐻

      How is this news? *grin*

  • Lars Littlefield

    Remember when Carter authorized troops to invade Iran at night to try and rescue the hostages and then there was a sand storm and we lost one helicopter and a bunch of enlisted men? Yeah. They jumped all over Carter’s shit, even though he insisted he was responsible for the whole tragedy and took full responsibility? The Republicans never let up. Nothing would satisfy them, especially the truth?

    And now Trump takes his sweet time to even acknowedge the for troops lost in Niger. Republicans are so special.

    • NowAnAgnostic

      Then there was that mysterious hostage release on Inauguration Day that the repugs arranged and Democrats did not investigate “for the good of the country.”

      • Lars Littlefield

        It was common knowledge that they would be released if and when Reagan was elected. That was the major cloud taht hung over Carter in his last six weeks as president.

        • Joseph Miceli

          What wasn’t common knowledge is that the Reagan campaign colluded with a foreign power, promising weapons sales to Iran in exchange for releasing the hostages AFTER Reagan was elected.
          Reagan and his cohorts committed treason. They should have been shot.

          • Lars Littlefield

            Shot in a public execution, on TV, several times, and left to rot.

  • shellback

    Senator McCain, Look at all the good press you missed out on because, up until now, it was always party before country. I’m sure you’re proud of your past performance.

  • Michael R

    Sorry to repost , but it is what it is
    ( Benghazi Benghazi Benghazi )

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/5f27791f67d6b9bf20ff40a3785994ab0a981ea47c8f1cc6e22d101462342f14.jpg

  • MikeBx2
    • DaddyRay

      Are they setting up Kelly for a future presidential run

      • MikeBx2

        I wouldn’t be at all surprised.

      • safari

        Trump leaves/removed from office. Pence nominates Kelly. Pence leaves. Kelly is president.

        • DaddyRay

          And the Militarization of the Executive branch is complete

          • FuzzyOtter

            Is Kelly still an acting general? We have had former generals as Presidents before. Not saying that I want a President Kelly…

        • Karl Dubhe

          President ‘Mad Dog’

          from frying pan to fire to nuclear furnace.

        • Ken M

          I thought Speaker of the House was 3rd?

          • safari

            VP vacancies are filled with a nomination and approval of Congress, I think.

          • Ken M

            Do we really want a chance to find out…..Hell Yeah!!!

          • UrsusArctos 🐻

            That’s how we got Ford instead of President Carl Albert (D-Oklahoma). Ford was confirmed VP after Agnew left office and before Nixon resigned.

    • BobSF_94117

      How dim is Chris Matthews?

      Kelly acted like the partisan fool he is.

      • Jeffg166

        Sarcasm.

    • ByronK

      WTF?

    • Ham
    • Bluto

      Fuck kelly with a telephone pole wrapped in rusty barbed wire & dipped in salt.

  • Cuberly Deux

    Well, the alt-right trolls are already on this, bashing McCain, as usual, and spreading the info that the real fault should lie with Obama. Apparently Obama authorized the operations in Niger to begin with.

    And yeah, just as Rachel pointed out last night. It’s a diversion. Have a modicum of info on the topic then throw a curve into the mix to distract from the initial issue/topic. Distract from the fact that information was either ignored or otherwise diverted re; the ambush.

    The right-wing is going to defend the cult in every amoral way they can think of. ie; blame Obama/Hillz.

    I think this is yet another example of Donnie’s avoidance of bad news or failure. Sounds like all the parties involved outside the WH were on this and willing to go public re; the whole thing. Donnie just didn’t want to hear about it. Remember, all things point to Donnie’s brand.

  • Henry Auvil

    NIGER-ZIII!!!!!!!!

    • RaygunsGoZap

      Nigh, Jersey?

  • safari

    OT – https://www.buzzfeed.com/kevincollier/americans-helped-spread-an-alleged-russian-gop-accounts?utm_term=.dfjQxXyV0#.yxRpD28NV

    All told, the account was quoted dozens of times across conservative news outlets. Fox News quoted an @TEN_GOP tweet in at least three stories, including one syndicated by the Daily Caller. The Daily Caller itself quoted it in six stories. Breitbart mentioned it in seven; Infowars in four; RedState in eight.

    The Gateway Pundit, another conservative outlet, cited the Russian account in 19 different stories, ranging from one about a motorcyclist who drove through an anti-Trump protest, for which he was arrested, to a story about how it was unfair that banks had stopped lending money to French nationalist presidential candidate Marine Le Pen.

    • Lars Littlefield

      FOX reported a @10-GOP tweet that Broward County was the hardest hit with voter fraud in the 2016 election

  • Michael R
  • Treant

    Yes, I’m sure that’ll be as effective as any other internal investigation. Please don’t bother me with the Harsh Letter that might be sent if they can get anybody to sign off on it.

  • Barry William Teske

    Oh look!
    A blockbuster!
    Who directs?
    A thriller!
    OMG!
    A whodunnit!
    Who produced?
    A mystery!
    Who financed?
    But most of all…
    ‘Did anybody let, the very courageous defenders of freedom, who gave their very lives to serve and protect, that this was not what they signed up for?’
    That alone makes this the years biggest shocker.
    Call it a mockbuster.
    That is just how HATE rolls.
    On everybody elses dime.
    Everybody elses lives.

  • Lars Littlefield

    OT: Chris Mathews isn’t buying George W’s posturing about uniting a divided USA. “Hmmm, he started a war that killed 100,000people. That’s what divided us in the first place.”
    Hard Ball, 10-19-2017

    Chris is a fool But when he’s right he’s right.

    • DaddyRay

      The campaign to normalize GWB must stop

      • Jeffg166

        As much as I hated Nixon at the time he’s not looking so bad now and he was and still is god awful.

      • Ninja0980

        Yup.
        If nothing else, he is trying to help Ed Gillispie win the VA’s governor’s race, a race in which all the racist dog whistles are being pulled out.

    • BearEyes

      chimpie started 2 useless wars.
      Invading Afghanistan when it had already defeated the russians – we learned nothing.
      And then destabilising the middle east with WMDs in Iraq that never existed.

      • Lazycrockett

        and held hands with the Saudis who funded the group that flew planes into The Twin Towers, Pentagon and a PA field.

        • BearEyes

          the same saudi’s we can’t have in the muslim ban, of course.

        • NowAnAgnostic

          Not to forget, Mammy (Pearls) Bush and Pappy Bush were in a NY hotel suite with a prominent member of the BinLaden family on 9/11. It then became a problem how to get said BinLaden person out of the country. I believe this incidence has been confirmed, but never achieved much news coverage.

          • stevenj

            NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake has told an interesting story about 9/11 and beyond on 60 Minutes in 2011. It’s amazing that he’s still alive and survived his experience.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0hO5fTGwPY

  • safari
    • Treant

      So much for even minimal vetting of your guests…

      • Cuberly Deux

        Cable news in general is pretty bad at vetting, but Fox is REALLY bad at it.

        I’m sure they’ll issue a correction……any…..minute…..day….week…now.

      • John30013

        That would require, you know, actual journalism.

    • Lars Littlefield

      He lied? What a surprise.

    • Karl Dubhe

      Did he also dodge the draft?

      Responsible people ought to know.

      • ByronK

        It is a little fucked up for a vet to make something to honor General Bonespurs.

    • ByronK

      Are these nutjobs so starved for attention like their hero that they’ll lie to get it too?

      • Cuberly Deux

        Seems to be addictive with some of those “Real Murkhan” trump voters.

    • MikeBx2

      The Tweeter-In-Chief who keeps us up to date on fake news must have overlooked this one. Odd.

    • Ken M

      I wonder if Fox requested a refund.

      • djcoastermark

        Nope, offered him a job.

    • MT YVR

      When service is performative and a commodity of moralism, such a surprise that some are lying about it. When it’s not a part of discourse as to which kind of value you have as indexed by what kind of service you participated in, when it now also comes with a monetary value as well as moralistic caché?

      Yeah. I’m SUUUPER surprised someone lied about it and got caught.

      /sacra…really? I have to point that out?

      • Cuberly Deux

        “I’m paying for illegals to be on welfare.”
        “The coastal elites have forgotten about me and mock me.”
        “We’re the salt of the earth, the real americans.”
        “We alone, know what an honest days work is like.”
        “My rights are being stripped away.”
        “”I’m not a racist and I’m tired of blacks accusing me of being racist. As they burn their own cities down.”
        Etc…

        Commodity moralism in it’s many forms…..

        • MT YVR

          Ab-so-fucking-lutely this.

    • Ninja0980

      oops!

  • bkmn

    1. why were they operating in Niger – was it to assist a Russian operation, as reported elsewhere, if so who authorized it and what were the objectives
    2. why was one of the bodies left behind for over a day
    3. was the soldier who was left behind alive when left, if so was he tortured and to what extent and what was his final cause of death
    4. why did it take POTUS almost two weeks to acknowledge this “Benghazi-type” incident?

    • safari

      A guess? The CIA

    • John30013

      Rachel had an interesting theory about that, tying together Trump’s latest travel ban (which includes Chad, where these troops were based out of), his administration’s incompetence (this time in the Dept. of Homeland Security), and his embarrassment over ISIS getting the drop on our troops.

      It looks like Congress is starting to investigate this issue, so maybe we’ll get a better picture of what’s really going on over there.

      • bkmn

        With the GOP in charge, don’t count on it.

  • Blake J Butler
    • coram nobis

      He just misstated his highly decorations, that’s all. I’m sure he has the Coy de Guerre, the Sliver Star, the Victoria Station Cross — and, if he was an electrician’s mate, the Good Conduct Medal.

      • Snarkaholic

        I heard he also has the Gold Bond Banner.

        • greenmanTN

          But not the Better Housekeeping Seal Of Approval!

      • Todd20036

        A better pun would be a Good Conduct Metal.

        • coram nobis

          Or the Irony Cross, Second Class.

    • Ken M
    • carrot festival

      Is that a bucket of Bakker EndTime Delight in the background?

    • JT

      A lying sack of shit just like Drumpf.

      However, when the Navy Times reached out to Garofalo on Thursday, he confessed to having lied about his military service.

      I’ll bet it was less a “reaching out” than a reaching under and grabbing tight.

    • OdieDenCO

      I hope this slime gets charged for impersonating a vet.

      • Bluto

        If he didn’t try to profit or gain a govt benefit, is merely claiming to be a vet a crime? I’m ok with that if it is.

      • John30013

        According to the Navy Times, he was actually enlisted in the Navy, but he never served in the roles he claimed, nor earned the medals he displayed.

        I believe there are laws against claiming to be a recipient of certain military awards (including the Purple Heart). So there may be criminal penalties for at least some of his lies.

    • Jefe5084

      What can you expect from a Trumpster? Nothing. And that’s what this guy is about. Not one damned, fucking thing.

      Translation: “apologize” : “oh fuck I finally got caught”

    • Ken M
    • greenmanTN

      Remember how many times, over and over, Fox got caught “accidentally” identifying Republicans involved in scandals as Democrats in the chyron below? It happened a LOT. Then when called on it they would say “Oops!” And apologize where none of their viewers would see it. They are well skilled in the big lie.

  • Jeffg166

    Trump’s Benghazi.

    • Lars Littlefield

      So, just Trumpghazi.

      • m_lp_ql_m

        But, his emails!

  • Karl Dubhe

    O/T, another former president speaks. Well worth the listen.

    https://youtu.be/pimDqrG6DuY

  • MT YVR

    Please let this be the thing. I soooo want to make a sign:

    The End is Nig…er.

    What? I never claimed to be a good person. Pff. (sips tea) (who am I kidding, sips vodka)(ha… joke, sips rum)

    • UrsusArctos 🐻

      45* fans will just think “Dumb Libtard! He left out a ‘g’. The guy can’t even spell gud.”

    • KnownDonorDad

      My mind went to Blazing Saddles.

  • Ninja0980
    • UrsusArctos 🐻

      Poor Sherriff Joe. When he is sued into homelessness I hope the county jail will let him bunk in one of those nice tents. /snark

      • TimCA

        And provide him with a pair of pink undies.

      • Nychta

        Fortunately (not for Arpaio, but for everyone else in Maricopa County) Tent City is no more! The current sheriff has closed it. The property will be converted into a rehab center. http://azc.cc/2wU3Q2X

  • Lazycrockett
    • KnownDonorDad

      FFS.

      This was why the U.S. was willing to spurn a country that has hosted U.S. organized military exercises and is a major recipient of U.S. security aid, a move that might have contributed to Chad’s recent decision to withdraw hundreds of troops from neighboring Niger, where they had been part of the coalition fighting Boko Haram and where, as recent events make clear, the U.S. needs allies.

  • Henry Auvil

    Congress needs to spend two years and at least $7 million investigating this. I heard Rex Tillerson was calling the shots in Niger, and there was a cover-up at the White House.

  • Michael R

    Stolen from internets

    “On election night, Anthony was shocked to see Trump carry Wisconsin by nearly 23,000 votes. The state, which ranked second in the nation in voter participation in 2008 and 2012, saw its lowest turnout since 2000. More than half the state’s decline in turnout occurred in Milwaukee, which Clinton carried by a 77-18 margin, but where almost 41,000 fewer people voted in 2016 than in 2012. Turnout fell only slightly in white middle-class areas of the city but plunged in black ones. In Anthony’s old district, where aging houses on quiet tree-lined streets are interspersed with boarded-up buildings and vacant lots, turnout dropped by 23 percent from 2012. This is where Clinton lost the state and, with it, the larger narrative about the election.”

    A New Study Shows Just How Many Americans Were Blocked From Voting in Wisconsin Last Year

    The impact of Wisconsin’s voter ID law received almost no attention. When it did, it was often dismissive. Two days after the election, Talking Points Memo ran a piece by University of California-Irvine law professor Rick Hasen under the headline “Democrats Blame ‘Voter Suppression’ for Clinton Loss at Their Peril.” Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said it was “a load of crap” to claim that the voter ID law had led to lower turnout. When Clinton, in an interview with New York magazine, said her loss was “aided and abetted by the suppression of the vote, particularly in Wisconsin,” the Washington Examiner responded, “Hillary Clinton Blames Voter Suppression for Losing a State She Didn’t Visit Once During the Election.” As the months went on, pundits on the right and left turned Clinton’s loss into a case study for her campaign’s incompetence and the Democratic Party’s broader abandonment of the white working class. Voter suppression efforts were practically ignored, when they weren’t mocked.

    Three years after Wisconsin passed its voter ID law in 2011, a federal judge blocked it, noting that 9 percent of all registered voters did not have the required forms of ID. Black voters were about 50 percent likelier than whites to lack these IDs because they were less likely to drive or to be able to afford the documents required to get a current ID, and more likely to have moved from out of state. There is, of course, no one thing that swung the election. Clinton’s failings, James Comey’s 11th-hour letter, Russian interference, fake news, sexism, racism, and a struggling economy in key swing states all contributed to Trump’s victory. We will never be able to assign exact proportions to all the factors at play. But a year later, interviews with voters, organizers, and election officials reveal that, in Wisconsin and beyond, voter suppression played a much larger role than is commonly understood.

  • Stogiebear

    I wonder how many times they’ll make Hillary come before the investigation committee to testify.

  • fuzzybits

    Make this his Benghazi!

    • Halou

      Trump really is doing a lot as president!
      Just look, he has his own Benghazi, his own Watergate, his own Katrina, Whatever next?

  • Rebecca Gardner

    If Hillary was President this would be Benghazi 2.0.

    Fuck everything. Everything is fucked. I give up.

  • Jukesgrrl

    The first subpoena will be issued to Obama, the second to Hillary.

  • Hey McCain, you’ve grown one of your balls back, gonna try to regrow the other yet?

  • Stubenville

    Wait! They forgot about her emails!

  • David Walker

    It delights me no end that Rachel Maddow has displayed genuine rage when talking about all of this. I hope that more cable news hosts and reporters take their gloves off when reporting the fucking moron. But her passion about this is so refreshing to watch. I’d recommend getting to your On Demand or her website to watch Thursday evening’s program. It fills in some gaps and is, as usual, very informative.

  • Halou

    Might the incident in Niger have something to do with the fact that Chad has pulled it’s forces out of Niger? After finding out that Trump had added them to the third incarnation of the travel ban they believed quite rightly that they were no longer regarded as allies of the US, and they reacted accordingly.

    Trump’s America has only one ally, Russia. Another reason McCain is promising to fight Trump’s regime is because there has STILL been no action taken whatsoever to impose sanctions on Russia, at the very least providing a list of names of individuals and institutions to be targeted… But despite the law saying he should have done all this by October 1st there has been nothing.

    • DevineBovine

      Trump’s “one ally” is not Russia. It’s Israel.

  • Dagoril

    But why wasn’t Obama in the Oval Office when this ambush took place? I’d like to get to the bottom of that!

  • Scott MB

    This is tRump’s Bengazi. I hope they haul him in front of Congress and drill him for 11 hours without any breaks. He wouldn’t be able to last 30 minutes before losing his shit.