Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta told Congress on Thursday that it would take two to three years to add the 35 new Marine security guard detachments that the United States plans to deploy to improve the security of American diplomatic compounds abroad.
We are working with State now to identify specific locations for the new detachments CIA Director Leon Panetta said referring to the State Department in prepared remarks at a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on the Sep. 11 attack on an American compound in Benghazi, Libya, which led to the deaths of J. Christopher Stevens, the American ambassador, and three other Americans.
The Marines have guard units at 152 diplomatic compounds, but did not have one in Benghazi when the assault occurred.
Mr. Panetta said that the role of the Marines detachments would be expanded beyond protecting classified information at the compounds.
Why did Valerie Jarrett need to have six (6) armed Secret Service agents on her Cape Cod vacation?
This could include expanded use of nonlethal weapons
, and additional training and equipment, to support the Embassy Regional Security Officer's response options when host nation security force capabilities are at risk of being overwhelmed Mr. Panetta said.
Mr. Panetta said that the Pentagon was not able to respond more quickly to the Benghazi episode because it had not received an intelligence alert about an impending attack.
The Department of Defense was prepared for a wide range of contingencies, but unfortunately there were no specific indications of an imminent attack on U.S. facilities in Benghazi Mr. Panetta told the committee.
Without adequate warning
, there was not enough time given the speed of the attack for armed military assets to respond.
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THE DOLITTLE RAID WAS ONLY FOUR (4) MONTHS AFTER JAPAN ATTACKED PEARL HARBOR!
When the attack began, the Pentagon had no forces that could be rapidly sent to Benghazi or to protect diplomatic outposts in Tunisia, Egypt or Algeria that might also have come under assault on the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.