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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Hillary Clinton Aide Tells Reporter To “Fuck Off” And “Have A Good Life”

A top aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton unleashed a lewd tirade of insults at a reporter who questioned his, as well as his employer's, handling of the attack on the Libyan consulate in Benghazi earlier this month.

In an email exchange published by Buzzfeed, reporter Michael Hastings revealed the vitriolic slew of attacks levied at him by Philippe Reines, Secretary Clinton's longtime aide and personal spokesman.

The correspondence slowly disintegrates to jabs and barbs over the United States' handling of Ambassador Christopher Stevens' death as well as the location of his journal, two topics that incited the seasoned spokesperson to call him an 'unmitigated a**hole' and to 'have a good day...And by good day, I mean F*** Off.'

The email exchange was published today on Buzzfeed with a brief introduction.

'On Sunday morning, BuzzFeed correspondent Michael Hastings emailed Philippe Reines, Hillary Clinton's longtime aide and personal spokesman at the State Department, asking a series of pointed questions about State's handling of the Benghazi fiasco, and Reines' over-the-top attack on CNN,' the politics staff writes.

'The emails quickly got personal, with Reines calling Hastings an "unmitigated a**hole" before an exchange of harsh words on both sides.'

The Buzzfeed article links to an earlier article which criticizes the State Department's 'aggressive' attack on CNN for using Ambassador Stevens' personal journal as a reporting source.

CNN found the journal after U.S. officials pulled all personnel out of Libya, leaving the consulate 'unguarded'.

Mr Reines blasted the network for publishing details from the journal, which included that he feared he was on an al Qaeda hit list and was worried about the possibility of an attack.

This information was in direct opposition to the State Department's statement that there was no intel that would hint at burgeoning unrest.

'Reines, a longtime and aggressive Clinton loyalist, has served for nearly four years in Foggy Bottom exclusively to protect and promote Clinton’s image,' the article states.

'Reines' personal involvement in responding to CNN this weekend — deflecting the blame of the department’s failure to secure the personal effects of a fallen ambassador to a cable network — can be read as more or less an expression of Hillary Clinton’s id.'

The first email on Sunday was sent at 10:32 a.m.

'Why didn't the State Department search the consulate and find AMB Stevens' diary first? What other potential valuable intelligence was left behind that could have been picked up by apparently anyone searching the grounds? Was any classified or top secret material also left? Do you still feel that there was adequate security at the compound, considering it was not only overrun but sensitive personal effects and possibly other intelligence remained out for anyone passing through to pick up? Your statement on CNN sounded pretty defensive--do you think it's the media's responsibility to help secure State Department assets overseas after they've been attacked?' the reporter asked.

Mr Philippe wrote a thorough response to the query, answering every question asked and pointing (see below) and addressed the accusation that he was 'defensive'.

'As far as the tone of my email, I think you're misreading mine as much as I'm misreading yours as being needlessly antagonistic,' Mr Reines wrote.

The conversation deteriorated from there.

'Thanks for getting back to me. No, you read my email correctly--I found your statement to CNN offensive,' Mr Hastings replied.

'Why do you bother to ask questions you've already decided you know the answers to?' Mr Reines shot back.

'Why don't you give answers that aren't bullsh** for a change?' Mr Hastings demanded.

At this point, after two hours of back and fourth, Mr Reines has had enough.

'I now understand why the official investigation by the Department of the Defense as reported by The Army Times The Washington Post concluded beyond a doubt that you're an unmitigated a**hole. How's that for a non-bullsh** response?'

Hoping to put an end to the emails, Mr Reines delivers his last insult.

'Now that we've gotten that out of our systems, have a good day,' he says.

'And by good day, I mean F*** Off.'

Mr Reines stood by his comments when questioned by Politico, saying 'I think the exchange speaks for itself.'

Buzzfeed also explained why the published the account in the first place, saying it elucidated the behavior of the State Department following Libya.

'He is a public official whose comments are newsworthy, and help illuminate the State Department's response to the crisis in Libya,' spokesperson Ashley McCollum told Politico.

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