Senate Report: Systemic Failure of Security in Benghazi
A bipartisan report released by the Senate on the Benghazi, Libya diplomatic compound attacks showed a systemic failure of the security for diplomats from the U.S. overseas that led to four Americans being killed including the U.S. Ambassador to Libya.
The report was released on Wednesday following several delays by the Senate Intelligence Committee. It indicates that the intelligence community failed to give sufficient warnings, the Department of State did not take warnings given to them serious enough and the U.S. military was flat-footed at the time the call went out to rescue those people in need.
Chris Stevens, the U.S. Ambassador to Syria, Sean Smith an information technology specialist and Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods CIA contractors all died between September 11 and 12 of 2012 in the attacks.
The report says that the attacks were preventable if the U.S. State Department accepted the security that had been offered by the military or had shuttered the facility in Benghazi until it had better security.
The report also pointed for the first time specifically at Ambassador Stevens for refusing twice the offer from the military to maintain a team of special operation forces during the week prior to the attacks.
Armed militants on September 11, 2012, the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, stormed the diplomatic post of the U.S. in Benghazi. They set the facility on fire and then attacked a CIA annex where the American citizens had taken shelter.
The attacks at first were described by the White House administration as spontaneous mob protests over a video made by an American that was anti-Islamic.
However, days after the two attacks, officials from the White House corrected the description, but the incident by that time was a huge political one that has been a constant thorn for the administration.
The intelligence community from the U.S. was also taken to task in the report for not attempting to get eyewitness reports following the attacks as well as for not correcting the reports that were erroneous quick enough.
The report indicates that follow up investigation showed a number of individuals from different militant groups linked to al-Qaeda took part in the two attacks.
The Senate Committee’s chair Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein said she hoped the new report would finally put to rest the many conspiracy theories over the attacks.