Today the UK’s Independent reported the details of the attack on the Libyan consulate that resulted in the deaths of four Americans, including the ambassador Chris Stevens. According to Ben Shapiro, “the details are so explosive that they will result in a Congressional investigation. In fact, they’re so explosive that they should result in the resignation of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.”
The US administration is now facing a crisis in Libya. Sensitive documents have gone missing from the consulate in Benghazi and the supposedly secret location of the “safe house” in the city, where the staff had retreated, came under sustained mortar attack. Other such refuges across the country are no longer deemed “safe”.
Some of the missing papers from the consulate are said to list names of Libyans who are working with Americans, putting them potentially at risk from extremist groups, while some of the other documents are said to relate to oil contracts.
According to senior diplomatic sources, the US State Department had credible information 48 hours before mobs charged the consulate in Benghazi, and the embassy in Cairo, that American missions may be targeted, but no warnings were given for diplomats to go on high alert and “lockdown”, under which movement is severely restricted.
The State Department had 48 hours to protect their people and they did nothing! Nothing! It is reprehensible what took place and the fact that our own State Department let it happen is an outrage. When Clinton asked “How could this happen,” she should have known the answer. As Secretary of State she is responsible for ensuring the security of U.S. embassies, consulates and staff. The State Department’s website acknowledges:
The Secretary of State, and by extension, the Chief of Mission (COM), are responsible for developing and implementing security policies and programs that provide for the protection of all U.S. Government personnel (including accompanying dependents) on official duty abroad. This mission is executed through the Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS). Personal and facility protection are the most critical elements of the DS mission abroad as they directly impact upon the Department’s ability to carry out its foreign policy. With terrorist organizations and coalitions operating across international borders, the threat of terrorism against U.S. interests remains great. Therefore, any U.S. mission overseas can be a target even if identified as being in a low-threat environment.
Evidence was even more apparent of the coming attack in Libya says David Blair and Alex Spillius of The Telegraph. They pointed out,
About 24 hours before the mob attack on the US consulate in Benghazi, al-Qaeda’s leader made his first public statement for four months.
The question comes to why was the security at the consulate no better than it was? It’s because that is the way Secretary Clinton wanted it. the consulate was staffed with Libyan “security” forces and it had “no bulletproof glass, reinforced doors or other features common to embassies.”
Ayman al-Zawahiri mourned the death of a leading commander from Libya and urged his followers to puncture the “arrogance” of the “evil empire,
This taped missive first appeared on jihadist websites on Monday. On Tuesday, an armed assault claimed the lives of the US ambassador to Libya and three of his colleagues.
This sequence suggests there could have been more to the bloodshed in Benghazi than a spontaneous demonstration against a YouTube film that escalated out of control. It seems unlikely that an attack could have been planned and executed so quickly in direct response to Zawahiri’s words. But the evidence shows that armed groups in Benghazi have been trying to kill the representatives of Western countries for some time.
Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL), who sits on the Senate Intelligence Committee, “I am asking my colleagues on the committee to immediately investigate what role al-Qaeda or its affiliates may have played in the attack and to take appropriate action.”
Ultimately Congress will need to investigate why the State Department failed to act in an appropriate manner to secure the consulate and hold those accountable for the deaths of the men that were killed.