Report of Investigation of Benghazi Murders of US Ambassador and 3 other Americans

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
#3
Have skimmed the report and it's pretty damning about State and its attitude to protecting its diplomatic staff. It's pretty clear there was a good degree of local situational awareness in Benghazi and an awareness of the level of risk being carried in that location.

Unfortunately, the good sense is rather diluted by the Party point-scoring the drafters have indulged in, pointing fingers at everyone from POTUS to CINC AFRICOM as somehow having been dilatory in either categorising the attack or in their inability to pull a CIF from nowhere and deploy it to the North African coast with an hour's notice.

Seems pretty open and shut that it was a Foggy Bottom fuckup.
 
#4
Have skimmed the report and it's pretty damning about State and its attitude to protecting its diplomatic staff. It's pretty clear there was a good degree of local situational awareness in Benghazi and an awareness of the level of risk being carried in that location.

Unfortunately, the good sense is rather diluted by the Party point-scoring the drafters have indulged in, pointing fingers at everyone from POTUS to CINC AFRICOM as somehow having been dilatory in either categorising the attack or in their inability to pull a CIF from nowhere and deploy it to the North African coast with an hour's notice.

Seems pretty open and shut that it was a Foggy Bottom fuckup.
To dismiss the seriousness of the report's findings on the basis of "partisan" politics is to do a disservice to those killed and ignores the fact that the majority of the Senate are Democrats and the report was by a bi-partisan committee and even included one of the most left-leaning Democrats, Sen. Levin. If you read the entire report you will see there is blame properly directed not only at our current Masters but also those of the previous administration that failed to upgrade diplomatic security as recommended by a special committee and the DoS IG.

The primary reason I think this needs to be completely aired out and responsiblity placed where it belongs is the image of the now dead beleaguered ex SEALS on the roof vainly trying to paint targets for air support that was not there. They deserved better and I would hope this travesty will transcend partisan politics so their deaths and those of the Ambassador and the other official will not merely be swept under the rug for politics' sake.
 

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
#5
I'm by no means disrespecting the tragic deaths of the US personnel who were killed in Benghazi and I'm sorry if you got the impression that I was. What I was adverting to was the concatenation of criticism of the political response to the attack with criticism of the security regime in place before the attack. This, to my mind, unnecessarily muddled the key message.

What I was doing was pointing the finger of a highly experienced security consultant at the entity responsible for this giant goat **** - the State Department and its appallingly complex, unresponsive, spineless, vague and unaccountable risk management and assessment mechanisms.

The security arrangements for the various temporary US diplomatic sites in Benghazi were laughably inadequate and this was widely known. Someone, somewhere in State made the determination that this was a risk worth carrying and, for whatever reason, chose not to invoke any of the in-house, DoD or commercial options which could have been used to mitigate the unacceptable risk. I see no sign of anyone actually carrying the can for this.
 
#6
I'm by no means disrespecting the tragic deaths of the US personnel who were killed in Benghazi and I'm sorry if you got the impression that I was. What I was adverting to was the concatenation of criticism of the political response to the attack with criticism of the security regime in place before the attack. This, to my mind, unnecessarily muddled the key message.

What I was doing was pointing the finger of a highly experienced security consultant at the entity responsible for this giant goat **** - the State Department and its appallingly complex, unresponsive, spineless, vague and unaccountable risk management and assessment mechanisms.

The security arrangements for the various temporary US diplomatic sites in Benghazi were laughably inadequate and this was widely known. Someone, somewhere in State made the determination that this was a risk worth carrying and, for whatever reason, chose not to invoke any of the in-house, DoD or commercial options which could have been used to mitigate the unacceptable risk. I see no sign of anyone actually carrying the can for this.
Thanks for the clarification. There also needs to be accountability for the decisions to stand down response forces at whatever level those decisions were made.

While a separate scandal, there also needs to be a full disclosure as to why our Masters apparently falsified repeatedly the nature of the attack as being a reaction to an "anti-Islam" video.


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Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
#7
Thanks for the clarification. There also needs to be accountability for the decisions to stand down response forces at whatever level those decisions were made.
Wouldn't argue with that, although worth factoring in that DoD (for example) had been asked to provide a force for Tripoli and had done so; had specifically not been asked for any sort of response force to be available either afloat with whichever SOC-capable MEU is in the neighbourhood or CIF with either EURCOM or AFRICOM. Unreasonable to expect DoD to stand up a 2-hour contingency response force on the off chance that someone will task it.

While a separate scandal, there also needs to be a full disclosure as to why our Masters apparently falsified repeatedly the nature of the attack as being a reaction to an "anti-Islam" video.


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Again, a separate issue. I don't understand US politics nearly well enough to comment but would suspect that there was a great deal of Foggy Bottom political correctness and arse covering going on and this was coupled with, to put it delicately, a lack of political will within the West Wing.
 
#9
I thought this was all 100% Obamas fault?
Erm....no, but for whatever happened under His watch He, as is any true leader in my view, is ultimately responsible for those specific aspects that were within His purview. It is apparent, though not yet established by all the relevant facts, that notwithstanding the security failures that led directly to the 4 deaths, the subsequent obfuscation (I will not yet say cover up) was not accidental and in fact was repeated, mantra-like, for many weeks after the true situation was known.

While you are free to find that unpersuasive or even benign, I smell election season partisan politics and an effort to avoid any admission that Al Qaeda is still a viable foe reeking from the entire matter.
 
#10
Obama: doesn't understand or give two craps about overseas politics/diplomacy/world events unless it impacts on his next popularity poll/rating.

Hilary Clinton: doesn't understand or give two craps about overseas politics/diplomacy/world events unless it impacts on her/its next popularity poll/rating (well, until she had the fall and the bloodclot). Perhaps she was too busy dodging sniper bullets in Sarajevo to read the reports or ask the questions to ensure the correct support/force was in place.

Fish rot from the head down: government departments are the same. When the underlings recognise that their bosses don't give a toss and don't have a clue what's going on then a significant number will take their eye off the ball.
 
#11
As a layman in such things colonial, I do seem to recall that there are USMC stationed in the London embassy, but are you saying there were none posted to this location, temporarily, given that date was approaching fast?
 
#12
As a layman in such things colonial, I do seem to recall that there are USMC stationed in the London embassy, but are you saying there were none posted to this location, temporarily, given that date was approaching fast?
Correct.
 
#13
I'm a little puzzled that this is still news, bunch of our guys getting lit up in a neglected corner of the empire is a fairly regular occurrence. If I was going to point to one it would be the CIA getting suicide bombed by a source up in Afghanistan a year ago or back in poor old Bush's reign the UN bombing in Iraq that destroyed their mission there. Administration arse covering is the normal SOP. A senior diplomat got unlucky in this one but more importantly it happened during an election race and was shamelessly exploited for partisan advantage. State was flying close to the wind on a badly organized shoe string and as usual Langley is fairly useless. Finally it's State's mission to stick its neck out and schmooze the locals, all this misplaced focus is likely to do is make it even more risk adverse bunch of bunker dwellers.
 
#14
The issue here isn't so much the death of the ambassador and his bodyguards...

...it is the cover up and lies spouted to protect the people who screwed up and who, if left in place, will doubtless screw up again. As with that much over used example 'Watergate': it wasn't the original crime that brought down the President; it was the lies and cover-up that Nixon instigated that brought him down.
 
#16
I'm a little puzzled that this is still news, bunch of our guys getting lit up in a neglected corner of the empire is a fairly regular occurrence. If I was going to point to one it would be the CIA getting suicide bombed by a source up in Afghanistan a year ago or back in poor old Bush's reign the UN bombing in Iraq that destroyed their mission there. Administration arse covering is the normal SOP. A senior diplomat got unlucky in this one but more importantly it happened during an election race and was shamelessly exploited for partisan advantage. State was flying close to the wind on a badly organized shoe string and as usual Langley is fairly useless. Finally it's State's mission to stick its neck out and schmooze the locals, all this misplaced focus is likely to do is make it even more risk adverse bunch of bunker dwellers.
With respect, I find it hard to fathom and a bit amazing at your apparent cavalier attitude about this incident if you actually read the report and other information already open source.

It can hardly be seen as a "normal" event even if the DoS is supposed to,as you so quaintly put it "stick its neck out and schmooze the locals." If you have been to the US Embassy in London for example, where your contention of "schmoozing the locals" would be even more true than in the hotbed of violent activity then existing in Benghazi, the security there is just a bit more robust than the several DoS security men with handguns who were originally THE security for the "consulate." It is one thing to "stick its neck out and schmooze the locals" but quite another to offer one's (and regrettably others) neck up for the chopping block as the DoS (and the National Security Council) effectively did in this case.

Furthermore, I would assume British diplomatic personnel are also sent abroad to "stick [their] necks out and schmooze the locals" and if that is just the "cost of doiung business" as you suggest, why did the UK government evacuate the British ambassador and staff after the assassination attempt on the UK ambassador?
 
#17
Furthermore, I would assume British diplomatic personnel are also sent abroad to "stick [their] necks out and schmooze the locals" and if that is just the "cost of doiung business" as you suggest, why did the UK government evacuate the British ambassador and staff after the assassination attempt on the UK ambassador?

JJH, one can equally ask why the US didn't beef up security in Benghazi in the wake of this event, or evacuate their people.
 
#18
JJH, one can equally ask why the US didn't beef up security in Benghazi in the wake of this event, or evacuate their people.
That is one of the questions I and many others have been asking--the root goes back to the evil Bush administration when DoS ignored the urging of a special committee on security and its own IG. It is bad enough that the US government spends and wastes nearly inclalcuable amounts of borrowed money, but we can't even expect competence from such spending.
 

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