On Libya: Who Ordered What?
Earlier today we learned that CIA operatives in Benghazi had their requests for help denied on the evening/night of 9/11.
Now, an official statement has been released by the CIA:
“We can say with confidence that the Agency reacted quickly to aid our colleagues during that terrible evening in Benghazi,” she said. “Moreover, no one at any level in the CIA told anybody not to help those in need; claims to the contrary are simply inaccurate. In fact, it is important to remember how many lives were saved by courageous Americans who put their own safety at risk that night-and that some of those selfless Americans gave their lives in the effort to rescue their comrades.”
One can only assume that the CIA transmitted their information from the people on the ground to people in the administration, like the Secretary of Defense and the president’s office. However, Leon Panetta stated that they couldn’t deploy forced because they didn’t have access to “real-time information” about what was going happening on the ground in Libya. However, this is contradicted by the Fox story in which CIA operatives on the ground did have a visual of the attackers.
Assuming that CIA is telling the truth, that they didn’t make the decision to stand down, then that decision presumably took place in the Department of Defense or at the presidential level. Bill Kristol assumes that it had to be a presidential decision and wants an answer to the following question:
When and why—and based on whose counsel obtained in what meetings or conversations—did President Obama decide against sending in military assets to help the Americans in need?
Personally I’m still also interested in why the administration decided to attribute the terror attack in Benghazi to a Youtube video, when the administration presumably didn’t have any evidence that should have led them to that conclusion. And why did they send out Ambassador Rice on Sunday talk shows to repeat that lame excuse of a talking point?