Last month, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton fainted and hit her head while she was recovering from a stomach virus. Because she suffered a concussion, doctors ordered her to rest. As a result, she didn’t testify as planned before a congressional panel investigating the deaths last September of four U.S. diplomatic staff in Benghazi, Libya.
The secretary’s critics wasted no time insinuating she was faking illness to get out of testifying. They suggested she was trying to duck responsibility for not moving quickly enough to improve security for State Department employees.
Some pundits, especially those with prominent platforms at Fox News, smelled a rat. Washington Post (and Blade) columnist Charles Krauthammer accused Secretary Clinton of suffering from “acute Benghazi allergy.” Greg Gutfeld, co-host of Fox’s The Five, wondered aloud how she could “get a concussion when she’s ducking everything.”
A headline in the New York Post, a corporate sibling of Fox News, shouted: “Hillary’s Head Fake.” Fox host Greta Van Susteren said Mrs. Clinton was suffering from an “immaculate concussion,” but retracted the statement in a blog post.
No one was more obnoxious than former United Nations ambassador, now Fox News contributor, John Bolton. He speculated that Secretary Clinton was suffering from “a diplomatic illness” that he said afflicts foreign service officers who seek to avoid meetings they don’t want to attend.
Now that Secretary Clinton has been hospitalized for a concussion-related blood clot, such cynics have an opportunity to set the record straight. Media watchdog groups report that the on-air skepticism has eased, but that Mr. Bolton and his ilk show no signs of apologizing for what they’ve already said.
Perhaps they’re suffering from a bout of Benghazi shamelessness.