The following is an email dated 26 February 2011 from Sid Stone Blumenthal to Hillary Clinton based on information provided by Moussa Koussa. Libyan Minister of Foreign Affairs Koussa defected a month later, on March 28 2011. [Source: Wikileaks]
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After her January 2009 appointment as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton wanted to hire Blumenthal. However, Obama’s chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, blocked his selection due to lingering anger among President Barack Obama‘s aides over Blumenthal’s role in promoting negative stories about Obama during the Democratic primary. According to a report in the New York Times, “Emanuel talked with Mrs. Clinton … and explained that bringing Mr. Blumenthal on board was a no-go. The bad blood among his colleagues was too deep, and the last thing the administration needed, he concluded, was dissension and drama in the ranks. In short, Mr. Blumenthal was out.”
Blumenthal, a longtime confidant of Bill and Hillary Clinton, earned about $10,000 a month as a full-time employee of the Clinton Foundation. During the 2011 uprising in Libya against Muammar Gaddafi, Blumenthal prepared, from public and other sources, about 25 memos which he sent as emails to Clinton in 2011 and 2012, which she shared through her aide, Jake Sullivan, with senior State Department personnel. In the form of intelligence briefings, the memos sometimes touted his business associates and, at times contained inaccurate information.
The United States House Select Committee on Benghazi, headed by Representative Trey Gowdy, Republican of South Carolina, subpoenaed Blumenthal in May 2015/ Blumenthal gave testimony in a closed-door session the following month.
Blumenthal’s name came up during the October 22, 2015 full committee public questioning of Hillary Clinton regarding the Benghazi incident, as one of the alleged sources of Hillary Clinton’s intelligence. During this hearing Democratic members asked that Blumenthal’s deposition transcript be made public so that comments regarding his involvement could be placed in context. The motion was defeated by a party-line vote.
February 26, 2011
For: Hillary [Clinton]
From: Sid [Sidney Stone Blumenthal]
Re: Q location, new defections, beginnings of interim govt
This report is in part a response to your questions. There will be further information coming in the next day.
(Source Comment: In a private conversation during the evening of February 26, Libyan Minister of Foreign Affairs Mousa Kousa stated that Muammar Qaddafi is moving his living quarters on a daily basis, primarily between secure Air Force and External Security Organization (ESO) facilities in the Tripoli region. Qaddafi is convinced that he is under threat of attack from Western military forces (particularly NATO), as well as disloyal members of his regime. Accordingly, he is seeking council from a shrinking circle of advisors, including Mousa Kousa, his sons Montasem, and Saif al-Islam, as well as loyal officers from the Air Force, Presidential Guard, and the ESO. Qaddafi believes that, in the event of a collapse of security situation in Tripoli, he can always retreat to the town of Sirte, which is controlled by his Qadhafah tribe.)
During the morning of February 26 a former official of the Libyan Government stated in confidence that Muammar Qaddafi was visibly shaken when informed by security officials that the large Magariha tribe, based around the southern city of Sabah, could no longer be counted al to support him. Many of the leaders of the Armed forces and the Intelligence services come from the Magariha, and Qaddafi has favored this tribe since coming to power in 1969. According to these individuals, Qaddafi began receiving reports on 19 February that the Magariha were turning against the government, but he believed that they would support him when faced with a full scale uprising in the eastern part of the country.
(Source Comment: The leaders of the Magariha were angered when Qaddafi allowed tribal member Abdelbaset Ali al- Megrahi to take the blame for the Lockerbie bombing in an international tribunal in 2001. The Libyan leader believed that he had resolved this situation when al-Megrahi was released from prison in Scotland and returned to a hero’s welcome in Libya in 2009.)
Gaddafi was particularly angry when Minister of Foreign Affairs Mousa Kousa also warned that Abdessalem Jalloud, his lifelong friend, former Prime Minister, and senior member of the Magariha, is believed to be giving encouragement to the anti-government forces in the western art of the country, and in parts of Tripoli. Jalloud is in ill health and has kept a low profile in recent years, but he is one of the original young officers who supported Qaddafi in the 1969 coup d’état against King Idriss al-Sanusi.
(Source Comment: Jalloud and Qaddafi are childhood friends and attended the Royal Military academy together in the mid-1960s. Following the coup, Jalloud was Qaddafi’s most powerful advisor from 1969 to 1993. While the two have not been close since Qaddafi relieved Jalloud as Prime Minister in 1993, the idea that one of his few lifelong friends has turned against him seems to his advisors to have shaken Qaddafi. He did not indicate what action he planned to take against Jalloud, if he can get to him.)
While the Magariha situation was difficult for Qaddafi to hear, Mousa Kousa and his other security advisors were more concerned when three tribes important to the protection of the oil fields in the Wahat region south of Benghazi went over to the opposition on February 25: the al- uwayya from Jikharra oasis, El-Mjabra from Jalu’s oasis and al-Awajila from Awjila basis.
These tribes have now announced that they will protect the oil fields if forces loyal to Gaddafi attack the facilities there, in an effort to carry out his threat to cut off oil to the West, if his regime begins to falter.
As the revolution in Libya spreads into Tripoli, tribal leaders, former members of the regime, students and academics, have begun organizing into new political structures in the areas held by opposition forces.
Former Minister of Justice Mustafa Abdel Gall, and tribal leaders from the eastern part of the country met in the town of Al Bayda to begin the process of forming an interim government. At the same time, individuals with access to these new political leaders state that some of the student and academic leaders are skeptical of the motives of Gall and other former members of Qaddafi’s government.
One Libyan academic told a member of the Moslem Brotherhood in Egypt that Gall and others are trying to avoid responsibility for past crimes, while taking advantage of the chaos in the country to gain power. This individual added that opposition forces in Benghazi have been carefully watching the activities of former Minister of Interior, General Abdul Fatah Younis al Abidi, and have placed him under guard. At present he is not being allowed to have outside contact. Opposition leaders know that Younis can be valuable in the struggle against Qaddafi, but they also feel that der 40 years as a senior Army officer and Minister of Interior, he may have to answer for the activities of the old regime.
(Source Comment: Younis is under house arrest in Benghazi, and no decision has been made by the various opposition leaders on whether or not to enlist him in support of the leadership of the opposition, as a new government starts to take shape.)
UNCLASSIFIED U.S. Department of State Case No. F-2014-20439 Doc No. C05792014
Date: 01/07/2016 CONFIDENTIAL
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