Skip to comments.Fox: Administration knew within minutes that Benghazi was a terrorist attack
Posted on 01/14/2014 7:07:53 AM PST by SeekAndFind
To some extent we knew this already — Leon Panetta said so in open testimony, to which I’ll return later — but James Rosen at Fox confirms this understanding at the highest levels of the Obama administration within minutes of the attack. No one seriously thought it was a demonstration that had turned into a riot, despite the spin offered in the days after the attack left four Americans dead. And that leaves a lot of questions as to the lack of response:
Minutes after the American consulate in Benghazi came under assault on Sept. 11, 2012, the nation’s top civilian and uniformed defense officials — headed for a previously scheduled Oval Office session with President Obama — were informed that the event was a “terrorist attack,” declassified documents show. The new evidence raises the question of why the top military men, one of whom was a member of the president’s Cabinet, allowed him and other senior Obama administration officials to press a false narrative of the Benghazi attacks for two weeks afterward.
Gen. Carter Ham, who at the time was head of AFRICOM, the Defense Department combatant command with jurisdiction over Libya, told the House in classified testimony last year that it was him who broke the news about the unfolding situation in Benghazi to then-Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The tense briefing — in which it was already known that U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens had been targeted and had gone missing — occurred just before the two senior officials departed the Pentagon for their session with the commander in chief.
According to declassified testimony obtained by Fox News, Ham — who was working out of his Pentagon office on the afternoon of Sept. 11 — said he learned about the assault on the consulate compound within 15 minutes of its commencement, at 9:42 p.m. Libya time, through a call he received from the AFRICOM Command Center. …
Rep. Brad Wenstrup, R-Ohio, a first-term lawmaker with experience as an Iraq war veteran and Army reserve officer, pressed Ham further on the point, prodding the 29-year Army veteran to admit that “the nature of the conversation” he had with Panetta and Dempsey was that “this was a terrorist attack.”
The transcript reads as follows:
WENSTRUP: “As a military person, I am concerned that someone in the military would be advising that this was a demonstration. I would hope that our military leadership would be advising that this was a terrorist attack.”
HAM: “Again, sir, I think, you know, there was some preliminary discussion about, you know, maybe there was a demonstration. But I think at the command, I personally and I think the command very quickly got to the point that this was not a demonstration, this was a terrorist attack.”
WENSTRUP: “And you would have advised as such if asked. Would that be correct?”
HAM: “Well, and with General Dempsey and Secretary Panetta, that is the nature of the conversation we had, yes, sir.”
Panetta told the Senate Armed Services Committee in February of last year that it was him who informed the president that “there was an apparent attack going on in Benghazi.” “Secretary Panetta, do you believe that unequivocally at that time we knew that this was a terrorist attack?” asked Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla. “There was no question in my mind that this was a terrorist attack,” Panetta replied.
Furthermore, the communication from the US military in Libya made clear from the start that this was a an attack, not a riot:
WESTRUP: “So no one from the military was ever advising, that you are aware of, that this was a demonstration gone out of control, it was always considered an attack -”
BRISTOL: “Yes, sir.”
WENSTRUP: “– on the United States?”
BRISTOL: “Yes, sir. … We referred to it as the attack.”
We have already known that Panetta got briefed from the start that this was a terrorist attack, from Panetta’s own lips. Presumably, that’s what he then told Barack Obama. What happened in between to cause them to claim it was a demonstration that got out of control? One charitable possibility is that the State Department or CIA might have claimed otherwise based on faulty intel — it happens, especially in the fog of war — or it could be that someone concocted that story to give them political cover for the lack of preparedness that this event demonstrated.
The Fox report also debunks the rumor that General Carter Ham received a stand-down order that night. As the classified testimony confirms, the American military was completely unprepared to deal with a terrorist attack in the region that night:
Who has time for this?
1 person may or may not have died because Chris Christie may or may not have ordered a lane of a bridge closed.
Candy Crowley instructed Mitt not to go there.
There are tons of issues Romney could have raised. But neither he nor his party had any real intention of winning.
Weakness. Mitt was weak.
Conviction makes one strong. Just saying...
HIS OWN SON came out and said Romney didn’t really want to be President.
I don’t buy the notion he did not go there because he was too nice a guy. My sense tells me he, or someone on his staff, was told there was more going on in Benghazi then seen of the surface and to go into it would hurt “national security”. IMO, there is no rational reason for not going there as he could have clubbed Obozo with that again again and again and nothing that ass could have said would have saved him.
BTW, doing something like this with inside info is not beyond the Dem play book. Note how Kennedy bombed Nixon with the “missile gap” knowing full well we could have destroyed the soviets 50 times over.
It wasn't 'spin' - it was a pattern of lies and the arrest of an innocent man.
Hillary and Obama are sociopathic liars.
RE: Hillary and Obama are sociopathic liars
Don’t forget the New York Times — their official mouthpiece.
And so, once again, WHERE WAS OBAMA FOR 10 HOURS???
He left a huge paper trail----he was "resting up" b/c he had a Las Vegas Democrat fund-raiser to attend next day.
bam bam lied, Americans died
I think he was gun shy because of previous criticism that he was going off half-cocked before all the facts were in. I know that doesn't really apply to Benghazi but it's apparent to me that gentleman Romney wanted to give the lying POTUS the benefit of any doubts and thought he (Romney) could gain some credit for his fairness.He, instead, should have gone for "the one's" jugular.
It’s ridiculous and unbelievable that we can’t have an answer to that question.
“where was Obama for 10 hours?” I’ll take “What is Homosexual Sex” for a thousand Alec.
It is clear that the average American does not care about Benghazi. It is a sad state of our country where people care about Downton Abbey and the “going ons” on the show rather than real life tragedies.
Obama's quirky sideshow----a gay drumbeat, and act after act of self-made melanin "victims" whining....and collecting govt checks.....as assorted grievances multiply.
As usual, Obobo is on the wrong side. Coincidentally (snix), Russia and China (who would veto any UN move against Assad) have rallied behind Egyptian Gen al-Sisi and denounced the Muslim slaughter of Christans in Egypt.
AS FREEPER PENELOPESIRE INSIGHTFULLY POSTED: Wait until the Saudis and Egyptians get through waterboarding the truth out of the Muslim Brotherhood leaders they have in custody!
Gehad al Haddad, Muslim Brotherhood activist AND former Clinton employee.
Ghgad is sitting in a nice comfy Egyptian jail as we type. Gehad al Haddad is a Muslim Brotherhood spox--and a former employee of Hillary and Bill's tax-exempt foundation.
Gehad was arrested by the Egyptian military for inciting violence AT THE SAME TIME he was a Clinton employee.
Betcha Gehad knows plenty abt how the M/B uses tax-exempts for money-laundering (to finance their terror activities against America).
All of Obama and Hillarys little secrets on Benghazi and arming Islamists and Al Quaeda throughout the Middle East are going to come falling out of the bag.
Gentleman? The way he treated the republicans in the primary? He mowed them down, outspent them ridiculously. And we knew he’d wimp out against Obama. And he did
No one wants to see that again. No one in their right mind is going to out up with such a RNC pick any more