Obama campaign adviser Robert Gibbs found himself on his heels over the administration's public handling of the recent crisis in Libya, where an attack left Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other American diplomatic officials dead.
"No one intentionally or unintentionally misled anyone involved in this," Gibbs said, during an appearance on "Fox News Sunday." "We learned more information every single day about what happened. Nobody wants to get to the bottom of this faster than we do."
For several days after the incident the White House sent mixed messages about what it believed had happened during the attacks, which initially were thought to be part of a broader range of protests against an obscure anti-Islam film. But the administration's early insistence that the attacks were not planned was quickly contradicted by voices from Libya, Congress and even the State Department, who described the attacks as likely pre-planned and coordinated.
On last week's show, Susan Rice, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, told host Chris Wallace that the attacks were likely "a spontaneous incident."
"The best information we have today is that in fact this was not a premeditated attack," Rice said.
Jay Carney, the White House spokesman, also continued to link the incidents to the video, even as a top White House official described them as a terrorist attack in a briefing before Congress.
On Friday, Carney finally acknowledged that it was "self-evident" that the attack was terrorism.
"I think as you heard Ambassador Rice say, the best information that we had at the point at which she gave that answer was answer that she gave," Gibbs said, after watching the clip of Rice. "As we have learned more, and as this investigation continues, I anticipate we will continue to learn more facts about the awful assassination and murder of our great ambassador in Libya."
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