A Sept. 17 Newsmax article by Bill Hoffmann summarizes an appearance by Attkisson on Steve Malzberg's Newsmax TV show. Malzberg lets Attkisson get away with pretending her main source on her latest Benghazi scoop, Raymond Maxwell, is being unfairly dismissed as less than credible:
The media is out to discredit a former State Department diplomat who turned Benghazi whistleblower, says Emmy-winning journalist and former CBS News correspondent Sharyl Attkisson.
What is the dirt that reporters have on former Deputy Assistant Secretary Raymond Maxwell? He's written poetry, she says.
"One person tweeted out that she heard someone else or was told by someone else in the media that [Maxwell] had no credibility because of his poetry," Attkisson said Wednesday on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"He's a poet and he published, when he was on administrative leave, some very insightful allegories."
The full segment shows that Malzberg did not push back on Attkisson's ridiculous defense.
In fact, Maxwell has been credibly accused of much more than writing poetry. Media Matters summarizes:
Maxwell himself is a dubious source. He was placed on administrative leave after the Accountability Review Board's investigation found a "lack of proactive leadership" and pointed specifically to Maxwell's department, saying some officials in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs "showed a lack of ownership of Benghazi's security issues." A House Oversight Committee report released findings from the classified version of the ARB report, which revealed that the ARB's board members "were troubled by the NEA DAS for Maghreb Affairs' lack of leadership and engagement on staffing and security issues in Benghazi."
Disgruntled over being "the only official in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs (NEA), which had responsibility for Libya, to lose his job," Maxwell spoke to The Daily Beast in May 2013 in an attempt to "restore" his "honor." Maxwell, who had filed official grievances regarding his treatment, expressed anger that Mills -- the same staff member Maxwell speculated was involved in hiding potentially damaging documents -- "reneged" on a deal to eventually bring Maxwell back to the NEA after his leave.
While Maxwell has previously been interviewed by the ARB, the House Foreign Affairs Committee, the House Oversight Committee, the Daily Beast, and Examiner.com, this is curiously the first time this allegation has been made public.
Maxwell also has no evidence to prove his allegation that Benghazi documents were "scrubbed" to protect then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, nor did he ever witness such behavior taking place.
The fact that Attkisson is resporting to such a transparently diversionary defense of her source suggests that she knows his testimony can't stand up to genuine scrutiny. No wonder she's relying on the likes of the MRC and Newsmax to protect her.