(CNN) - After the emergence of photographs showing Secretary of State John Kerry on his 76-foot yacht “Isabel” on Nantucket Sound on Thursday, the State Department issued an embarrassing correction Friday morning, back-tracking and acknowledging that the Secretary was in fact on the yacht on Wednesday, the day the Egyptian military staged a coup against democratically-elected Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy.
Originally, State Department officials were quick to deny a Wednesday tweet from CBS News’ Mosheh Oinounou that: “A @CBSThisMorning producer just spotted Secretary of State Kerry on yacht in the Nantucket Boat Basin. No response when she shouted ‘Morsi.’”
(CNN) - The State Department has dramatically cut its funding for social media after an inspector general's report found the department spent excessive amounts on advertising for some of its Facebook pages.
"We take the valuable feedback of the (Office of Inspector General) seriously, and we're committed to addressing the recommendations and the concern outlined in this assessment," State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki said Wednesday in the daily press briefing.
(CNN) – Senior State Department and Diplomatic Security officials may have covered up or stopped investigations of inappropriate or even criminal misconduct by staff, according to an internal memo from the department's Office of the Inspector General.
The timeline surrounding the allegations places the incidents during former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's tenure, opening the possibility that a widening scandal might taint both her record and her possible political aspirations. Clinton has also taken heat for the department's response to the September 2012 attack on the U.S. Embassy in Benghazi, Libya.
(CNN) - The State Department spokeswoman who earlier this month found herself in the middle of the controversy surrounding key revisions to the Benghazi talking points appears to be in line for a promotion.
The White House announced Thursday that President Barack Obama intends to nominate Victoria Nuland as assistant secretary for European and Eurasian affairs, a position that requires Senate confirmation.
(CNN) - President Barack Obama called on Congress Thursday to fully fund administration requests for additional diplomatic security measures in the wake of the 2012 attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
The requests include increasing the number of Marine guards dispatched to protect facilities around the world, Obama said.
Washington (CNN) - An e-mail discussion about talking points the Obama administration used to describe the deadly attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya, show the White House and State Department were more involved than they first said in the decision to remove an initial CIA assessment that a group with ties to al Qaeda was involved, according to CNN sources with knowledge of the e-mails.
The talking points have become a political flashpoint in a long-running battle between the administration and Republicans, who say that officials knew the attack last September 11 was a planned terror operation while they were telling the public it was an act of violence that grew out of a demonstration over a video produced in the United States that insulted Islam.
(CNN) – House Speaker John Boehner called on President Obama to release emails that he says show how the White House wanted to change the Benghazi attack "talking points."
Secretary of State John Kerry, meanwhile, vowed Thursday to "leave no stone unturned" in looking into the matter and answering questions about the attack.
Washington (CNN) - The long-awaited House committee hearing on the Benghazi terror attacks featuring State Department whistle-blowers has started with statements from Rep. Elijah Cummings, of Maryland, the ranking Democrat on the committee, and chairman Rep. Darrell Issa, R-California. The whistle-blowers, Gregory Hicks, Mark Thompson and Eric Nordstrom, will brief the committee on what happened during the September 11, 2012, terrorist attack that killed four Americans. In the lead-up to the hearing, Republicans have said the State Department officials will tell the truth about what happened during the attack. Democrats say they have been frozen out of the investigation.
(CNN) – In an interview with congressional investigators, the former top diplomat in Libya expressed concern that more could have been done by the military on the night of September 11, 2012 and morning of September 12, 2012, to protect those being attacked at the U.S. compound and annex in Benghazi, Libya. Specifically, he wondered why the military did not send a plane as a show of force into Libyan airspace, and why four U.S. Special Operations soldiers were not permitted to travel to Benghazi on a Libyan plane the morning of September 12.
(CNN) – Greg Hicks, former deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, Libya, told congressional investigators that the State Department internal review of the catastrophe at the mission in Benghazi "let people off the hook," CNN has learned.
The Accountability Review Board "report itself doesn’t really ascribe blame to any individual at all. The public report anyway," Hicks told investigators, according to transcript excerpts obtained by CNN. "It does let people off the hook."