I want the men who risked their lives, who were injured and who died in Benghazi to be honored with the truth as investigative reporter, Jennifer Griffin, has said.
The timeline offered by the CIA and repeated by CBS has significant discrepancies if one goes by factual evidence which includes leaked cables and reports by eyewitnesses on the ground.
CBS Banghazi timeline:
CBS reported the timeline of events based on the CIA timeline issued last week:
They began with security incidents prior to the Benghazi attack which listed a thwarted terror plot, an explosive device thrown at a convoy carrying UN envoy Ian Martin, a grenade thrown at the International Red Cross, an IED outside the Benghazi consulate, an RPG that hits the vehicle carrying the British Ambassador.
They also note cables requesting more security by Eric Nordstrom in March and July. On July 9, Ambassador Stevens requests that security not be drawn down and the SST (Site Security Team) be withdrawn because benchmarks have not been met. In August the team is removed anyway.
Ambassador Stevens then asks for a “protective detail bodyguard postions” on August 2nd, saying that “the security condition in Libya … unpredictable, volatile and violent.” On August 8th, the Ambassador says there have been “a series of violent incidents has dominated the political landscape” and calls them “targeted and discriminate attacks.”
What CBS Omitted:
There were 230 incidents in Libya in the the year prior to the attack in addition to 13 near and around the consulate. Ambassador Stevens and Eric Nordstrom cabled that the area was surrounded by al-Qaida terror training camps. They were “the last flag standing” and the “Taliban is in the building.” [Daily Beast]
In one attack, the bomb at the consulate itself left a 14 foot hole in the mission wall. What more do you need? This is the height of negligence.
The US consulate building, which was basically unprotected, also did not meet code. [HotAir]Cables warned it could not be defended. The cables which went to Hillary Clinton’s office clearly stated that it was only a matter of time before they were attacked to rid the area of Westerners.
Before his death, Gaddafi warned that Benghazi would become a hotbed of al-Qaida terrorism and he was right.
Timeline of 9/11 Benghazi Consulate Attack According to CBS:
Ambassador Stevens sent cables to DC citing security incidents and “growing frustration with police and security forces who were too weak to keep the country secure.”
CBS elaborated on the video protest in Cairo, nearly 750 miles away.
9:00 p.m. – Ambassador Stevens goes to bed. There are five security agents on site, three based in Benghazi and two traveling with Stevens. The front gate is staffed by Libyan security guards.
9:40 pm – Gunfire is heard and dozens of armed people flow through the gate at the main entrance. The CIA security team in the annex and the Libyan 12th of February Brigade, which they claim is one of the most powerful militias serving as a presence in Benghazi. The embassy in Tripoli and State Department command are notified.
State Dept. Diplomatic Security follow the events in real time via audio.
All but one agent in the compound leaves to get gear in another building. The mob sets fire to the Libyan barracks on site. The agent with the Ambassador Stevens and Sean Smith, Scott Strickland, secures the men in an unvented windowless room.
The attackers get into the building where the Ambassador, Smith and Stickland are hiding. They set it on fire. Strickland leaves by a window but the two men are not behind him. He returns to look for them several times but can’t find them because of the heavy smoke. He goes to the roof and radios the other agents.
Three agents return to look for the men and find Smith’s body which they take with them.
Hillary Clinton is told of the incident shortly after it began at 4 pm DC time, 10 pm Benghazi time, and she in turn calls Libyan President Mohammed Magariaf to enlist his support.
10:05 pm: government and intelligence agencies re alerted including the White House Situation Room, the office of the Director of National Intelligence and the FBI. They are informed that “US Diplomatic Mission in Benghazi Under Attack” — “approximately 20 armed people fired shots; explosions have been heard as well. Ambassador Stevens, who is currently in Benghazi, and four COM (Chief of Mission/embassy) personnel are in the compound safe haven.”
10:25 pm: A six-member CIA team arrives at the annex with 40 to 60 members of the Libyan brigade. They remove Smith’s body.
10:54 p.m. (4:54 p.m. ET): An alert from the State Dept. Operations Center: “the firing… in Benghazi has stopped. A response team is on site attempting to locate COM personnel.”
11 p.m. (5 p.m. ET): Just ahead of the weekly meeting with Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Chairman of Joint Chiefs Martin Dempsey, White House National Security Advisor Tom Donilon tells President Obama of the attack and the fire at the main villa. The president is updated several times throughout the evening.
At the compound, the 17th of February Brigade says they can’t hold the perimeter and withdraws.
DS agents make final search for Stevens and leave with the CIA team in an armored vehicle heading for the annex, taking fire along the waInside room of murdered U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens
Of note, when CBS News’ Elizabeth Palmer visited the compound in one of several trips to Libya, she found little evidence of an extensive firefight at the compound’s walls and main gate, likely indicating the fiercest fighting occurred away from the compound.
Midnight (6 p.m. ET) Agents arrive at the annex, which receives sporadic small-arms fire and RPG rounds over a roughly 90-minute period. The security team returns fire and the attackers disperse.
12:07 a.m. (6:07 p.m. ET): An alert from the State Dept. Operations Center states that the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli reports the Islamic military group “Ansar al-Sharia Claims Responsibilty for Benghazi Attack”… “on Facebook and Twitter and has called for an attack on Embassy Tripoli.”
Around 12:30 a.m. (6:30 p.m. ET): The Pentagon issues an order to a special operations team in Europe to move to Sigonella, Sicily – less than one hour’s flight away from Benghazi. Over the next three hours an additional special operations team based in the U.S. is ordered to deploy to Sigonella. Neither arrived in time.
1:00 a.m. (7 p.m. ET): The first of two unmanned U.S. Predator drones, which already had been flying over eastern Libya, is diverted to Benghazi, as reported by CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson and David Martin on Oct. 15.
1:30 a.m. (7:30 p.m. ET): A U.S. security team from Embassy Tripoli lands in Benghazi and learn that the ambassador is missing. They try to arrange for transportation into town, with the goal of locating Stevens.
4:07 a.m. (10:07 p.m. ET): Secretary Clinton issues a statement acknowledging the death of one State Dept. officer.
5:00 a.m. (11:00 p.m.): A second U.S. Predator drone arrives, per CBS News’ Attkisson and Martin.
5:15 a.m. (11:15 p.m. ET): The U.S. Regional Security Office in Tripoli gets a phone call from an Arabic-speaking source who says a Westerner has been found in Benghazi and is perhaps at a hospital. It’s believed to be Ambassador Stevens. Transfer to airport is arranged.
At around the same time, the additional security team finds transportation from the airport under the escort of the Libyan Shield, another local militia, but decides to head to the annex after learning that Stevens was almost certainly dead. Just after their arrival, the annex takes mortar fire, sustaining three direct hits. The precision of the attacks indicates a level of sophistication and coordination.
Former U.S. Navy SEALs Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty are killed in the mortar assault, which lasts just 11 minutes before dissipating; a DS agent and annex security member are severely wounded.
After the mortar attack, about 30 Americans evacuate the annex and head to the airport, with the assistance of the Libyan security convoy.
Ambassador Stevens is confirmed dead later that morning, as Americans see his body at the airport
The plane is too small for all of the Americans, so the first flight out takes U.S. diplomats and civilians to Tripoli, leaving behind security staff and bodies.
8:00 a.m. (2 a.m. ET): The second flight leaves Benghazi for Tripoli with U.S. security members and bodies.
President Obama is told of Stevens’ death. State Department tells all diplomatic posts around the world to review their security posture and to take all necessary steps to enhance it
What CBS omitted or misstated:
From the beginning, officials knew that there was no protest prior to the attack and bringing up the video was a diversion.
The five security agents were two more than they normally had and they were there by chance since they traveled with the Ambassador.
The attack was launched by far more than 20 terrorists.
The attack was covered by audio but evidence also indicates there was live video feed as well. There is information from sources on the ground that the drones, equipped with cameras providing live feed, were overhead almost throughout the entire attack. There was also live feed from the cameras on the ground. There was also testimony that there was continuous radio contact according to testimony before congress by State Department rep Charlene Lamb. [Fox News]
CBS elaborated on the elite Libyan guard. That is the same guard from which many fled when the attack began. This elite guard were described as more of a ragtag, unreliable and untrained group of men in the cables from the consulate. [Commentary Magazine]
The Libyan guards they make so much of were unarmed. One was seen photographing the consulate prior to the attack. It was known that Ansara al-Sharia, the al-Qaida affiliate, was amassing with heavy weaponry around the consulate. Alarms were sent out for help from the annex. One agent sounded “distraught.” The alarms for help went out three hours before the attack. US personnel asked for Air Support by radio at least three times. [Fox News]
The alleged 11 minute attack in which Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods were killed lasted almost 7 hours. They died over their machines guns saving the other 30 people in the annex. Their guns were soaked with blood, indicating they fought while wounded.
If the Air support that was repeatedly asked for had been provided the terrorist mortar team would have been taken out. And Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods would have lived. Instead Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods died in the 6th hour of a seven hour attack, unsupported and apparently uncared for.
The mortars used to kill the two SEALs, Doherty and Woods, had to be set up in daylight and took time to set up, proving the attack was pre-planned despite the fact that the administration was still insisting they didn’t know if it was pre-planned. In fact, they sent Ambassador Rice out the Sunday after the Tuesday attack to say it was “spontaneous.” [Fox News]
The calls for help went unanswered by the administration. The men were left to die. US personnel had the terrorist mortar ‘painted’ with a laser targeting device. Two AC-30u ‘Spooky’ gunships were assigned to Libya. The laser targeting devise provides Air assets with exact targeting information to avoid collateral damage. Other Air assets were less than 500 miles away across the Mediterranean Sea at the tip of the boot in Italy.
The president was notified but we do not know for certain if he watched the attack from the situation room. We have plenty of photos of him in the situation room during the Osama bin Laden raid however.
Post-Attack Response and Investigation
Sept. 12: Secretary Clinton announces the death of Stevens and Smith via press release.
Clinton holds a video conference with the entire embassy staff in Tripoli, which by then also included everyone who was evacuated from Beghazi, as reported by CBS News’ Margaret Brennan Sept. 14.
Clinton: Ambassador’s death a “senseless act of violence”
Clinton later delivers live remarks from the Treaty Room of the U.S. State Department.
President Obama addresses the public: “Make no mistake, we will work with the Libyan government to bring to justice the killers who attacked our people.
“Since our founding, the United States has been a nation that respects all faiths. We reject all efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others. But there is absolutely no justification for this type of senseless violence. … No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for.”
The president spends time with State Department personnel in an impromptu visit that is closed to the press.
Obama suspects Libya attack targeted Americans
In an interview with President Obama the same day, “60 Minutes” correspondent Steve Kroft presses the president on early accounts that the attack stemmed from a spontaneous protest, saying it didn’t “sound like your normal demonstration.”
“We’re still investigating exactly what happened,” Mr. Obama said. “I don’t want to jump the gun on this. But you’re right that this is not a situation that was exactly the same as what happened in Egypt. And my suspicion is, is that there are folks involved in this, who were looking to target Americans from the start.”
Meanwhile, Clinton visits the Near Eastern Affairs bureau, and the information technology bureau where Sean Smith was assigned, CBS News’ Margaret Brennan reports.
Clinton later references the assault as an “attack by a small and savage group.”
Meanwhile, senior State Dept. officials share initial details of the attack in Benghazi with members of the press via phone briefing. A senior official says in response to an inquiry about alleged protests outside of consulate that night: “We frankly don’t have a full picture of what may have been going on outside of the compound walls before the firing began. … With regard to whether there is any connection between this Internet activity and this extremist attack in Benghazi, frankly, we just don’t know. We’re not going to know until we have a chance to investigate.”
What CBS omitted:
The “violence” by a “small group” who announced that they were the al-Qaida-linked group, Ansara al-Shariah, via Facebook and Twitter left the US officials unsure of who they were. Meanwhile, they knew the same group was amassing outside the consulate three hours earlier. [Fox News]
CBS’ 60 minutes kept damning information, from the public when they selectively edited a clip on Benghazi. During the second debate, a dustup over Benghazi was ended by Candee Crowlee who interjected herself into the debate by declaring that the president called the Benghazi attack a “terror attack,” referring to a general reference he made in the Rose Garden. It was not a specific reference to Benghazi.
After this, CBS released a clip they had edited out from the Sept. 12 show. It seemed to indicate that the president did call it a terror attack:
KROFT: But there are reports that they were very heavily armed with grenades, that doesn’t sound like your normal demonstration.
OBAMA: As I said, we’re still investigating exactly what happened, I don’t want to jump the gun on this. But your right that this is not a situation that was exactly the same as what happened in Egypt. And my suspicion is there are folks involved in this. Who were looking to target Americans from the start. So we’re gonna make sure that our first priority is to get our folks out safe, make sure our embassies are secured around the world and then we are going to go after those folks who carried this out.”
Bret Baier of Fox News’ Special Report believed that because Kroft started his question with “but” that there was probably a question and answer that was edited out of the interview.
He was correct. The CIA timeline of events surrounding Benghazi was later issued with part of the clip missing, an important piece:
KROFT: Mr. President, this morning you went out of your way to avoid the use of the word terrorism in connection with the Libya Attack, do you believe that this was a terrorism attack?
OBAMA: Well it’s too early to tell exactly how this came about, what group was involved, but obviously it was an attack on Americans. And we are going to be working with the Libyan government to make sure that we bring these folks to justice, one way or the other.
KROFT: It’s been described as a mob action, but there are reports that they were very heavily armed with grenades, that doesn’t sound like your normal demonstration.
OBAMA: As I said, we’re still investigating exactly what happened, I don’t want to jump the gun on this. But your right that this is not a situation that was exactly the same as what happened in Egypt. And my suspicion is there are folks involved in this. Who were looking to target Americans from the start. So we’re gonna make sure that our first priority is to get our folks out safe, make sure our embassies are secured around the world and then we are going to go after those folks who carried this out.
KROFT: There have been reports, obviously this isn’t the first time…there have been attacks on the consulate before. There was an attack against the British ambassador. Do you…this occurred on Sept. 11. Can you tell me why the ambassador was in Benghazi yesterday? Was it to evaluate security at the consulate?
OBAMA: Well keep in mind Chris Stevens is somebody that was one of the first Americans on the ground when we were in the process of saving Benghazi and providing the opportunity for Libyans to create their own democracy. So this is somebody who had been courageous, had been on the ground, had helped to advise me and Secretary Clinton when we were taking our actions against Muammar Qaddafi. And is somebody who is very familiar with the train. He was doing the work that he does as a diplomat helping to shape our policies in the region at a time when things are still fairly fragile. But I think it’s important to note that we have a Libyan government in place that is fully cooperative, that sees the United States as a friend that recognizes we played an important role in liberating Libya and providing the Libyan people an opportunity to forge their own destiny. And in fact we had Libyans who helped protect our diplomats when they were under attack. But this is a country that is still rebuilding in the aftermath of Qaddafi. They don’t necessarily always have the same capabilities that countries with more established governments might have in helping to provide protection to our folks. But beyond that, what I want to do is make sure that we know exactly what happened, how it happened, who perpetrated this action, then we’ll act accordingly.”
He clearly did not call it a terror attack. They withheld this portion of the clip which supported Romney’s statement. When asked if it was terrorism, he said it was too early to tell which makes his statement during the debate a lie.
The help that was sent, which was so impressive according to official accounts was held up by Libyan authorities until 4:30:
“1:15 a.m.: CIA reinforcements arrive on a 45-minute flight from Tripoli in a plane they’ve hastily chartered. The Tripoli team includes four GRS security officers, a CIA case officer and two U.S. military personnel who are on loan to the agency. They don’t leave Benghazi airport until 4:30. The delay is caused by negotiations with Libyan authorities over permission to leave the airport, obtaining vehicles, and the need to frame a clear mission plan. The first idea is to go to a Benghazi hospital to recover Stevens, who they correctly suspect is already dead. But the hospital is surrounded by the Al Qaeda-linked Ansar al-Shariah militia that mounted the consulate attack.”
Exclusive: Tour of battle-torn Libyan safe house
CBS News’ David Martin reports that some U.S. officials already were looking at the attack as a terrorist act, perpetrated by people either associated with or who sympathize with al Qaeda, that took advantage of the protest.
The FBI officially opens an investigation into the deaths of Stevens and the three other Americans killed, as reported by CBS News’ Andres Triay and Bob Orr.
Sept. 13: A government official speaking on the condition of anonymity said the FBI is planning to send investigators to Germany to interview U.S. Consulate personnel who were evacuated there, as reported by CBS’ Pat Milton.
CBS News’ David Martin reports that a radical Islamic group called Ansar al Sharia is the lead suspect in the attack, according to U.S. officials. The name means “Supporters of Islamic law.”
Sec. Clinton remains in regular contact with other top officials such as Secretary Panetta and Gen. Dempsey, CBS News’ Margaret Brennan reports.
Marine anti-terrorist teams similar to the one sent to Tripoli land in Yemen to protect the U.S. Embassy in Sana’a, reports CBS News’ David Martin. There are two more of these teams on standby but so far no plans to send them to particular embassies.
CBS News’ Charlie D’Agata gets access to an injured Libyan guard based inside the consulate, who offers a firsthand account of the attack and makes the first mention of Blue Mountain, a British security firm contracted by the State Department that employed Libyans to conduct procedural security measures inside the compound, including x-rays of equipment.
Sept. 14: The bodies of Stevens, Smith, Woods and Doherty are returned to the U.S. They are welcomed in a televised ceremony at Joint Base Andrews. Secretary Clinton publicly denounces the “Innocence of Muslims” video.
CBS News’ Brennan reports that Clinton visits the Situation Room and Oval Office “half a dozen times this week” and spends “countless hours” there.
CBS News’ Cami McCormick reports on protests outside the U.S. Embassy in Khartoum, Sudan. The number of protestors outside the Khartoum Embassy is estimated at 2,000. Police use tear gas against the stone-throwing protestors. The demonstrators were trying to get in the compound but police held them back.
CBS News’ Charlie D’Agata interviews members of the 17th of February Brigade’s VIP protection team involved in the evacuation and obtains exclusive photos of an injured American being evacuated to the airport from the annex under the brigade’s escort. They put the total number of Americans evacuated from Benghazi at 32.
Sept. 15: CBS News’ D’Agata is the first reporter to locate the secret CIA annex in Benghazi. He reports that the roof of the house is covered in mortars. CBS News broadcasts images of the helmets and bloodied flak jackets discovered there.
What CBS omitted:
The military and intelligence were left out and not included in any of the deliberations during and after the attack. British and American help and equipment were on the ready and were never asked to deploy, even as the men at the consulate and annex begged for help.
A CNN reporter was the one to find Ambassador Stevens diary because the US sent no one in to investigate. Instead of sending in the CIA, the government treated it as a criminal investigation by sending the FBI in two weeks later.The military and intelligence officials felt left out of this as well and said they could have gotten in to investigate almost immediately. [Fox News]
Therefore, there was no investigation.
Amb. Rice insists Libya attack “spontaneous”
Sept. 16: U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice tells Bob Schieffer on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that there is no information that suggests the attack was preplanned.
“We’ll want to see the results of that investigation to draw any definitive conclusions. But based on the best information we have to date, what our assessment is as of the present is in fact what began spontaneously in Benghazi as a reaction to what had transpired some hours earlier in Cairo where, of course, as you know, there was a violent protest outside of our embassy … sparked by this hateful video. But soon after that spontaneous protest began outside of our consulate in Benghazi, we believe that it looks like extremist elements, individuals, joined in that — in that effort with heavy weapons of the sort that are, unfortunately, readily now available in Libya post-revolution. And that it spun from there into something much, much more violent. … We do not have information at present that leads us to conclude that this was premeditated or preplanned.”
Earlier in that same program, Libyan President Magariaf tells Schieffer that the assault was preplanned and some of the attackers were foreigners.
“The way these perpetrators acted and moved … this leaves us with no doubt that this has preplanned, determined – predetermined … It was planned — definitely, it was planned by foreigners, by people who — who entered the country a few months ago, and they were planning this criminal act since their — since their arrival.”
Magariaf also claimed “about 50″ people had been arrested in connection with the attack.
– Magariaf separately states Ahmed Boukhatala is one of the lead suspects. CBS News interviews Boukhatala over mango juice off camera and admitted he was there that night but denies any involvement in the attack. At that point, he had still not been questioned and was moving freely in Benghazi, challenging Magariaf to “come to my house and arrest me” if he was a suspect.
Sept. 17: FBI officials say that they will not be going to the crime scene until they are sure they have substantial protection.
Sept. 18: Secretary Clinton tells CBS News’ Margaret Brennan that the attack was the work of extremists:
“Let me assure you that our security in Benghazi included a unit of host government security forces, as well as a local guard force of the kind that we rely on in many places around the world. In addition to the security outside the compound, we relied on a wall and a robust security presence inside the compound. And with all of our missions overseas, in advance of September 11, as is done every year, we did an evaluation on threat streams. And the Office of the Director of National Intelligence has said we had no actionable intelligence that an attack on our post in Benghazi was planned or imminent.”
Clinton announces that the FBI has arrived in Libya. The team remains in Tripoli.
What CBS omitted:
Ambassador Rice was either lying or given misinformation that was meant to obfuscate the truth. There is no question that the administration knew the attack was NOT spontaneous hours before the attack even began.
Questions remain in consulate attack
– Meanwhile, CBS News’ Elizabeth Palmer reports from Benghazi that witnesses say there was no protest outside of the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi on the night of Sept. 11.
Sept. 19: Director of the National Counterterrorism Center Matthew Olsen tells Congress that the Benghazi assault was “a terrorist attack on our embassy. … We are looking at indications that individuals involved in the attack may have had connections to Al Qaeda or Al Qaeda’s affiliates; in particular, Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb.”
Sept. 20: House Oversight Committee sends a letter to Secretary Clinton asking for information in regard to the attack.
U.S. State Department spends $70,000 to buy ad time on seven Pakistani TV stations, featuring clips of Secretary of State Clinton and President Obama disavowing the film “Innocence of Muslims.” The clips were taken from previous speeches from Mr. Obama and Clinton. Pakistan’s government declares a national holiday to protest the film.
The State Department issues an alert warning Americans to avoid nonessential travel to Pakistan as protests are likely to continue and turn violent.
CBS News obtains a memo detailing injuries sustained by DS personnel in Benghazi:
“Special Agent David Ubben, was injured during the attacks on Consulate Benghazi. From the last I have heard, Dave repeatedly entered the burning Consulate to recover injured personnel, was involved in a heavy firefight, and at some point was struck by mortar shrapnel. David has been successfully evacuated to Tripoli, was stabilized and is currently in Germany for more medical treatment. David has suffered a serious compound fracture to his leg and shrapnel injuries to his head. As of our last communication, the doctors are optimistic that his leg will be saved but he may currently have some minor brain injuries.”
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivers a closed briefing to Congress.
Sept. 21: Secretary Clinton says “what happened in Benghazi was a terrorist attack,” adding “we found the video that’s at the core of this series of events offensive, disgusting, reprehensible.”
Sept. 28: The Office of the Director of National Intelligence releases the following statement:
“As we learned more about the attack, we revised our initial assessment to reflect new information indicating that it was a deliberate and organized terrorist attack carried out by extremists. It remains unclear if any group or person exercised overall command and control of the attack, and if extremist group leaders directed their members to participate. However, we do assess that some of those involved were linked to groups affiliated with, or sympathetic to al-Qa’ida.”
Oct. 1: State Dept. security team reviews security camera footage of the attack in Benghazi for the first time.
Oct. 2: Secretary Clinton announces her appointees to the Accountability Review Board (ARB), which will conduct the probe of the events of Sept. 11. The board begins work the same week.
What CBS omitted:
The Pakistani ads by Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama claimed the attack was driven by a protest over a movie trailer and they were very sorry. This was completely disingenuous.
GOP: White House ignored safety warnings in Libya
Oct. 3: Secretary Clinton responds to question from CBS News’ Margaret Brennan about claims that Washington denied requests for additional security in Libya:
“Let me start by cautioning everyone against seizing on any single statement or piece of information to draw final conclusions. It’s essential that we go through all of the information and the entire context so that we can get a full and complete accurate understanding of what happened. I take this responsibility very seriously, and I believe that our diplomats, our leaders, and the American people deserve a rigorous, serious, careful process … no one wants the answers more than we do here at the department. And now based on the reviews so far, we’re developing a better understanding of what happened, but we have a lot of work to do to give complete and accurate responses to all the questions and statements that are swirling out there.”
Oct. 4: CBS News’ Bob Orr reports the FBI arrived at the consulate in Benghazi, where it conducted an examination, collecting evidence and documentation to the extent possible given the time elapsed from the incident.
Oct. 5: CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson reports on questions over whether the Benghazi compound was adequately secured:
— Lt. Colonel Andy Wood who headed the Site Security Team in Libya said U.S. diplomatic personnel in Libya repeatedly requested increased security, but the State Department in Washington DC denied those requests.
— Wood said his team and a six-member mobile security deployment team were pulled from Libya in August, and that two other MSD’s also left between February and August.
— Congress and others say there were 13 threats and attacks leading up to the September 11 assault.
Libya embassy staff told “to do with less”?
Oct. 8: In an interview with CBS News’ Attkisson, Lt. Col. Wood says there was “pressure to reduce the number of security people” in Libya, starting shortly after his arrival in February.
The State Department told CBS News’ State Dept. correspondent Margaret Brennan that despite the withdrawal of Wood’s security support team, it had “no impact whatsoever on the total number of fully trained American security personnel in Libya overall or in Benghazi specifically.”
In addition, the State Dept. said Wood was stationed in Tripoli and was not a part of the assessment of security in Benghazi.
Brennan also first reports that there is video evidence of the assault in Benghazi and that it is now in the hands of government investigators.
Oct 9: Two senior U.S. State Dept officials share a timeline of events.
Oct. 10: The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee holds a hearing into the attack, with testimony from Lt. Col. Wood, former regional security officer in Libya Eric Nordstrom, State Department’s deputy assistant director for international programs Charlene Lamb and State Department’s Under Secretary of State for Management Patrick Kennedy.
Lawmakers questioned the pre-attack security levels and the government’s initial linking of the attack to the anti-Muslim film.
What CBS omitted:
To claim that the security remained unchanged when cables from Ambassador Stevens and Eric Nordstrom indicated that they didn’t trust their Libyan guards is outrageous.
Tracking down militants who attacked U.S. Consulate
Meanwhile, Colonel Hamid Hassi, a senior Libyan army officer, tells CBS News’ Elizabeth Palmer that he believes American intelligence knows exactly where Ansar al Sharia, the group linked to the attack, are.
Hassi said a drone strike would be a mistake, and that any strike would have to have to come from “our side,” or there would be huge problems between the U.S. and Libya.
What CBS omitted:
A NY Times reporter was able to interview one of the terrorists but somehow the United States wasn’t able to find him. In fact, the terrorist said he was never approached by US investigators as he sat in the local cafe. Three suspected terrorists were captured the night of the attack and US security were told to release them to Libyan officials. [NY Times]
Read more of the scrubbed CBS timeline here.
President Obama went to bed and the next day flew to Nevada to campaign.That should have ended his presidency but the media, our own Pravda, refused to cover it.
The Main Stream Media refuses to explore any part of this story other than to promote the idea that an obscure internet video is the reason four American citizens died.
The photo with bloody handprints on the consulate wall has never been explained. A Libyan witness said that an American being dragged out grabbed the wall. Who was the American and what were the circumstances?