New Book Says CIA Station Chief In Benghazi, Libya – Held Up Rescue; New Review Of DoD/CIA Authorities Regarding Force Protection Authorities Needed
David Kirkpatrick, writing in the September 5, 2014 New York Times, says that “5 commandos guarding the CIA Annex in Benghazi, Libya — when the terrorist attack occurred on September 11, 2012 — claim in a forthcoming book: that the CIA Station Chief in Libya, stopped them,” from attempting to recue their fellow Americans who were under attack. Mr. Kirkpatrick writes that “in a new book, set to be released next week [the 2yr. anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2012 attack] — and, obtained by The New York Times, “the commandos protested repeatedly as the CIA Station Chief ordered them to wait in their vehicles — fully armed, for 20 minutes, while the attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission was unfolding — less than an mile away.”
“If you guys do not get here, we are going to die!, a U.S. diplomatic security agent shouted to them over the radio,” according to the commando’s account in the soon to be released book, “13 Hours.” The commandos eventually left their vehicles in defiance of the CIA Station Chief’s orders to stand down. As Mr. Kirkpatrick notes, “the accusation that the [CIA] Station Chief, referred to in the book, as “Bob,” held back the rescue — opens a new front in a fierce political battle over who is a fault for,” U.S. forces being unprepared and not forward deployed in the Middle East/North Africa on the 12th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attack on the U.S. homeland.
“The book, is the first detailed account of the extent of the delay [in attempting to rescue our personnel]; — its consequences for the [any potential] rescue attempt; and, who made the decisions,” Mr. Kirkpatrick wrote. “The commando’s account,” Mr. Kirkpatrick contends, “fits with other publicly known facts and chronology — suggests that the CIA Station Chief issued the “stand down,” orders on his own authority. Mr. Kirkpatrick adds that the CIA Station Chief instead, “hoped to enlist local Libyan militiamen;” and, “the commandos suspect the CIA official hoped the Libyans would carry out the rescue alone — to avoid exposing the CIA base.” “No meaningful Libyan help ever materialized,” Mr. Kirkpatrick wrote.
“The commandos, [authors of the new book] were former members of the American Special Forces teams hired by the CIA as private [security] contractors. Two of the men, both former Navy SEALS, died fighting the attackers at the CIA base/annex later that night. Five others are credited as co-authors of “13 Hours,” which was written with their cooperation by Mitchell Zuckoff, a Professor of Journalism at Boston University.”
“No American fired a weapon of any kind in defense of the mission until the CIA commandos reached the compound, more than 40 minutes after the attack began. The Libyan guards hired to protect the mission — quickly retreated,” according to this new book.
Review of DOD/CIA Responsibilities/Authorities Needed In Wake Of Benghazi Revelations
I have no reason to doubt the claims made in this new book; and, it certainly has ring of truth as to the attack itself….and, the failure of the U.S. to protect and defend those in harms way. I would not be surprised if this incident will spark a senior-level review of CIA and DoD authorities regarding force protection of American personnel overseas — especially at these “outposts” at the ‘tip end of the spear.’ The CIA Station Chief’s risk averse mentality, if true, doomed brave Americans who were basically left hanging at their most desperate time. A very sad and disturbing end, if true.
Why, On The Anniversary Of The Sept. 11, 2001 Terrorist Attack On The U.S. Homeland…Was No U.S. Rapid Reaction Force Pre-Positioned In The Region?
But, larger questions also linger. Why, on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack on the U.S. homeland, was no rapid reaction force pre-positioned in the Middle Eastern theater? Especially, in light of the heightened threat conditions in Benghazi — including reports of surveillance and ‘casing’ of the Consulate and Annex there. It has been reported that the attackers knew the layout of the Consulate and Annex — so, clearly, this had all the hallmarks of a pre-planned, sophisticated operation/attack. Were senior U.S. military and Intelligence officials oblivious to the fact that anniversaries matter in the Middle East? Or, was there a reluctance to put a Rapid Reaction Force on standby; and/or, deploy them ahead of time to the region — because of issues of money/funding?
Clearly, more could have/and, should have been done — once it became evident that U.S. personnel were under attack.
And, There Still Has Been No Definitive Explanation Of Who Ultimately Endorsed The Infamous Talking Points Which Attributed The Attack To An Angry Mob Over An Anti-Islam Video. We only know where the POTUS wasn’t — which was not in the Situation Room. Was there genuine confusion in the beltway over who was attacking the Consulate and Annex in Benghazi? Hard to believe.
Indeed, Brett Baier and James Rosen of Fox News reported on June 13, 2014, that “The terrorists who attacked the U.S. consulate and the CIA annex in Benghazi were using State Department cell phones which were seized from State Department personnel during the attacks.” “But the most shocking part of this report,” Fox News noted, “is the that State Department personnel knew exactly what was going on when it was going on and knew it was a real terrorist attack. They had real-time evidence because the bad guys were using the State Department cell phone network. They knew instantly that the attack wasn’t caused by some lame YouTube video, and the efforts were well coordinated.”
“The terrorists who attacked the U.S. consulate and CIA annex in Benghazi on September 11, 2012 used cell phones, seized from State Department personnel during the attacks, and U.S. spy agencies overheard them contacting more senior terrorist leaders to report on the success of the operation, multiple sources confirmed,” to Fox News.
“The disclosure is important because it adds to the body of evidence establishing that senior U.S. officials in the Obama administration knew early on that Benghazi was a terrorist attack, and not a spontaneous protest over an anti-Islam video that had gone awry, as the administration claimed for several weeks after the attacks,” Fox said.
“Eric Stahl, who recently retired as a major in the U.S. Air Force, served as commander and pilot of the C-17 aircraft that was used to transport the corpses of the four casualties from the Benghazi attacks – then-U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens, information officer Sean Smith, and former Navy SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods – as well as the assault’s survivors from Tripoli to the safety of an American military base in Ramstein, Germany.”
“In an exclusive interview on Fox News’ “Special Report,” Stahl said members of a CIA-trained Global Response Staff who raced to the scene of the attacks were “confused” by the administration’s repeated implication of the video as a trigger for the attacks, because “they knew during the attack…who was doing the attacking.” Asked how, Stahl told anchor Bret Baier: “Right after they left the consulate in Benghazi and went to the [CIA] safe-house, they were getting reports that cell phones, consulate cell phones, were being used to make calls to the attackers’ higher ups.”
I challenge anyone who just read this article to conclude that no further Benghazi investigation is needed. The death/murder of U.S, Ambassador and three other brave Americans….deserve nothing less. V/R, RCP