The Obama and Hillary Criminal Negligence on Benghazi
Much is owed the men who sacrificed their all at Benghazi. This is especially the case concerning uncovering the truth in getting to the answers to the critical questions of the families of “THE BENGHAZI FOUR”. It is our absolute intent to leave no stone unturned as we seek to uncover the TRUTH concerning the cover-ups and lies surrounding the national tragedy of Benghazi that occurred on Sept 11, 2012, or any other pertinent matter that affects U.S. national security and the well-being of our great nation.”
By Larry Johnson –
Thursday, 12 May 2016
Fox’s Adam Housley is out tonight (Wednesday) with a great report on the mutual failure of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton to respond to the terrorist attacks on US diplomats and intelligence officers in Benghazi in September 2012. They could have and should have authorized military support. Such action probably would have saved at least the lives of former Navy SEALS, Ty Woods and Glenn Doherty. Because it was Libya, this was viewed by the White House as a Hillary project, which means Barack Obama had delegated that matter to her and explains why he was largely uninterested in the chaos unleashed by the U.S. intervention to remove Qaddafi. As alarm bells started ringing in the White House situation room with the news that Ambassador Steven’s residence was under attack and the Ambassador was missing, Barack Obama was content to speak with Hillary Clinton and showed little sense of urgency in figuring out how to help the men and women under attack. He did not go to the Sit Room and he certainly did not take charge. He went to rest up for his upcoming fund raising trip.
Hillary Clinton’s failure to do her job is equally shocking. In fact, the ultimate responsibility for getting the gears moving to get help to our personnel was hers and hers alone. It was not even 3a.m., but she refused to answer the call for help.
Adam’s latest reporting is based on exclusive interviews with two sources, an Air Force officer who was at Aviano Air Force Base on the evening of 11 September, and a retired U.S. Army Sgt who was monitoring the attacks that night from the Headquarters of Delta Force.
Even the above average American probably does not understand nor appreciate the gravity of what these two men are saying. I know one of these men well (I actually introduced him to Adam). Both are describing different facets of an established U.S. Government counter terrorism response plan. It has been in place since the 1990s and was formulated in the aftermath of failed U.S. response to the terrorist attack in October 1985 on the cruise ship, the Achille Lauro.
Without going into extensive detail, the U.S. military, diplomatic and intelligence chaotic response to the hijacking of that ship (and the murder of Leon Klinghoffer) led to a reorganization of how the U.S. Government would respond to and manage a terrorist attack. When a U.S. citizen or interest was attacked outside the United States then the responsibility for organizing and coordinating the response fell upon the Department of State. State was to lead the charge. Why?
Because once you are outside of the borders of the United States you have to work with other sovereign nations. Rarely do we have a situation where there is no government and we do not have to worry about getting permission to bring our troops onto foreign soil. There also is the matter of getting permission to overfly the territories of foreign countries.
Although State Department was given the job of being the coordinator of the response effort, this did not mean it had the authority or the power to dictate to the Department of Defense, military commanders, the FBI, the CIA and the NSA what they would do. Coming up with a decision required a meeting. The advent of video conferencing in the 1980s (and it became a common tool by 1990 for the national security bureaucracies) made coordination much easier. A President no longer had to wait for people from different buildings in Washington to schlep over to the White House for a meeting. You simply dialed in, looked into the camera and watch the TV monitors. The first one I recall vividly was the SVTC (pronounced CIV ITS) convened during a military coup in the Philippines in December 1989–George HW Bush was out of Washington, I don’t remember why, and Dan Quayle was sitting in the big chair with Colin Powell keeping an eye on him.
It also is important to understand that since the early 1990s there have been regular counter terrorism exercises involving U.S. Special Operations forces and the forces attached to Geographic Combatant Commands–i.e. SOUTHCOM, EUCOM, PACOM, CENTCOM, NORTHCOM and AFRICOM. Why?
When a terrorist attack occurs (or attacks occur) and the departments and agencies are notified that there is a crisis, the first stage of action is to sort out the confusion and develop courses of action. In my experience, when these events first occur, we do not know who is responsible, we do not know a reliable figure of dead or wounded and we do not know if the event is going to be followed by more attacks. We do not have to have immediate clarity in order to come up with options for acting. The immediate task is to define the situation (e.g., our diplomatic compound is under attack and our Ambassador is missing). The first response is to convene a Counterterrorism Security Group teleconference in which the relevant agencies update the existing intelligence and describe the assets they have available to deploy.
Being prepared to do this task is one of the reasons the national security agencies–especially DOD–do annual counterterrorism exercises. By going through the process of identifying their own resources and capabilities and interacting with other departments/agencies in developing relevant contingency plans under a crisis situation minimizes the chance for confusion and delay when a real world incident occurs.
What happened at Benghazi is a classic scenario. You don’t wait until an Ambassador is kidnapped or an Embassy overrun by a mob before trying to come up with plans on how to respond. You need to have an idea of the different kinds of military forces you can call upon. You need to know how you are going to transport your response forces to the scene of an incident. Then there is the big issue of getting permission. Ultimately the President has to authorize sending U.S. persons to other countries to act, but it is the Secretary of State who has the job of turning the system on.
On the afternoon of 11 September 2012, Hillary Clinton deliberately and consciously refused to activate the CSG. She refused to get the DOD, CIA and State Department CT experts together on a Secure Video Teleconference. Instead, she handled it all by herself, but not with the intent of sending help. Her only interest was managing the political fallout.
I cannot emphasize enough that when this attack started the Islamic radicals did not call us with a schedule of how long they intended to press the attack nor how they planned to carry out the attack. Even though the U.S. Government knew early on that Ambassador Stevens was missing, no contingency plan for finding him or rescuing him was put in place.
Adam Housley’s report makes two things clear:
- EUCOM and AFRICOM both initiated the Crisis Response planning that they had repeatedly practiced in previous counter terrorism exercise. Both had military assets that could have been used. Especially relevant are the words of the anonymous Air Force pilot who was at Aviano Air Force Base that fateful night. They were alerted, they were ready to deploy and they could have overflown the site and provided close air support to the endangered CIA Annex. But the order to launch never came. Why? Because Hillary Clinton did not act. It is that simple.
- DOD, following the protocol developed and executed in the previous Counter Terrorism exercises, notified Secretary State Clinton that the military assets were “spinning up.” Spinning up means they are packing their bags, loading pallets onto planes, getting airlift in place and putting me on board so they are ready to move when the order comes.
The order never came. It is vital to remember that the attacks continued for almost 10 hours. While it is true that an immediate response probably would not have done anything to save Ambassador Stevens and his communicator, there is no doubt that U.S. air and ground personnel could have been on scene to help defend the CIA Annex if only Hillary Clinton had acted. She did not. Instead, with the help of her sycophantic inner circle, they contrived a lie claiming that an obscure video that ridiculed the Prophet Mohammed was responsible for the deaths. She knew early on that was a lie, but, in true Clinton fashion, had not problem lying to grieving families and lying to the American people.
Hillary’s negligence that night remains the single biggest reason that I, as a former Hillary supporter, could never vote for her. She is a despicable politician of the worst kind and she has American blood on her hands.
Larry C. Johnson is a former analyst at the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, who moved subsequently in 1989 to the U.S. Department of State, where he served four years as the deputy director for transportation security, antiterrorism assistance training, and special operations in the State Department’s Office of Counterterrorism. He left government service in October 1993 and set up a consulting business. He currently is the co-owner and CEO of BERG Associates, LLC (Business Exposure Reduction Group) and is an expert in the fields of terrorism, aviation security, and crisis and risk management, and money laundering investigations. Johnson is the founder and main author of No Quarter, a weblog that addresses issues of terrorism and intelligence and politics. NoQuarterUSA was nominated as Best Political Blog of 2008.