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Can Blumenthal-Hillary e-mails help sell books?

Sidney Blumenthal, a longtime confidant to former president Bill Clinton and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton, was on Capitol Hill on June 16 to chat with the House Benghazi panel. (Susan Walsh/AP)

The Hillary Rodham Clinton e-mails recently released by the State Department include some interesting exchanges between Clinton and her pal and informal adviser (and our former colleague here at The Washington Post) Sidney Blumenthal.

They don’t shed much light on what she knew and when she knew it and what she did about anything having to do with the attacks in Benghazi, Libya, that killed U.S. Ambassador to Libya J. Christopher Stevens and three others on Sept. 11, 2012.

But we’ve found someone who’s finally figured a way to make gainful use of at least one e-mail by turning it into a book promotion blurb for London journalist Patrick Cockburn’s new offering: “The Jihadis Return.”

We received this e-mail from the creative folks at OR Books, a small, independent publishing outfit based in New York:

Blumenthal’s October 2009 e-mail to “hrod17@clintonemail.com” with “Subj: H: Afghan. Sid” forwards an article he had read:

Hillary: FYI: I found this one of the most sensible and informed brief articles on Afghanistan. Patrick Cockburn, of the London Independent, is one of the best informed on-the-ground journalists. He was almost always correct on Iraq. Sid.

Cockburn spotted the missive and sent it to his publisher, who put it on the mailer with a note to “Brief yourself like a Secretary of State (and please make better use of the intelligence.) Read Patrick Cockburn’s sensational book on the rise of ISIS.”

Co-publisher John Oakes told us the blurb was to “induce people to become better informed by hearing it straight” from Cockburn, someone who “knows what he’s talking about.”

(Quick Trivia Quiz: Cockburn is the uncle of. . .?)

Ah, you guessed it, Olivia Cockburn, better known as actress (TV series “House,” several movies) Olivia Wilde.

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