CIA Director promises to produce Benghazi survivors for Congressional testimony

posted at 2:41 pm on September 11, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Will John Brennan clash with John Kerry over Benghazi? The survivors of the Benghazi attack exactly one year ago have yet to appear before Congressional committees investigating the terrorist attack that claimed four American lives. including Ambassador Chris Stevens, the first American Ambassador murdered in the line of duty in 33 years.  CNN had earlier reported that the CIA had been polygraphing the survivors to make sure they hadn’t begun talking — to Congress or anyone else.  Congress has been demanding access to them, but this week John Kerry told CBS’ Sharyl Attkisson that he would not produce the witnesses:

Stephen Hayes reports this morning that the CIA Director has promised to produce them himself in response to a demand from House Intelligence chair Mike Rogers:

In a three-page letter to the chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Mike Rogers, CIA director John Brennan says that his agency will provide the “relevant information” to Rogers in order to facilitate meetings between CIA-affiliated personnel in Benghazi and congressional oversight committees. The offer of cooperation, dated September 3, 2013, comes as four committees of jurisdiction in the House of Representatives prepare to reinvigorate separate inquiries into the events of September 11, 2012, and their aftermath. In the next two weeks, the House Foreign Affairs, Armed Services, Government Oversight and Reform, and Intelligence Committees will all hold hearings looking into different aspects of the Benghazi attacks – beginning with an Intelligence Committee hearing later this week on the lack of progress in the investigation and apprehension of the perpetrators of those attacks. 60 Minutes is planning to air its investigation into the Benghazi attacks later this fall.

In his letter to Rogers, Brennan responded to several specific questions the Intelligence Committee chairman had posed in a letter dated August 2, 2013, denying that CIA officers on the ground during the attacks had been subjected to polygraphs or required to sign non-disclosure agreements. He also denied that any CIA officers – “either staff or contractor” – had been told not to speak to Congress about the attacks or threatened with consequences for any such cooperation. “To the best of my knowledge after inquiry, I am unaware of any officer who has been threatened with reprisals,” Brennan wrote. “Nor would I tolerate such behavior. To retaliate or threaten retaliation would be a violation of law.”

But the most important part of Brennan’s letter was the brief section on the possibility of meetings with Benghazi survivors. “Finally, you asked that CIA provide a list of all officers in Libya on 11 September 2012 and arrange for the committee to speak to any of those officers regardless of their current location,” he wrote. “Information identifying those officers is classified. We will work with the Committee to provide the relevant information via classified channels.”

Hayes explains that House Republicans have been torn on how hard to press for this, as it might set some uncomfortable precedents later:

The request from Rogers for access to survivors came after considerable debate among Republicans in the House. One group of lawmakers expressed concerns about demanding access to the Benghazi survivors. Doing so, they argued, would set a bad precedent for intelligence officials in the field. CIA officers have to be risk takers to do their jobs effectively, this group maintained, and calling them back to Washington after a debacle like Benghazi could well make them more risk-averse.

But others argued that any CIA officials in Benghazi that night who wanted to talk were unlikely to do so without the protection that a congressional demand – or, more formally, a subpoena – would provide. CIA officers, they reasoned, wouldn’t volunteer to share details about the events of that night that could damage the Obama administration, particularly since the CIA director had been a close adviser to Barack Obama since his 2008 campaign. The only way these officials would talk is after a demand from Congress that they do so.

This once again casts light on the tension between the CIA and State Department over Benghazi.  In the immediate aftermath of the sacking of the consulate, the White House tried to blame a YouTube video, and then when that story collapsed, the CIA.  The CIA responded with a series of leaks about the incompetence of State, which then leaked more about the CIA, until the leaks petered out after a month or so.

Since then, most of the focus has fallen on State and the decisions made about security, but also about what the CIA may have been doing in Benghazi — perhaps trying to collect the weapons it dispersed during the Libyan rebellion and NATO-led intervention.  Clearly, Kerry doesn’t want Congress poking its head into what the State Department did or did not do, but Brennan isn’t as interested in presenting a united front, and that might mean something interesting … or just be a recognition that the CIA simply can’t contain the survivors forever.

Meanwhile, of course, the fruits of decapitating the Qaddafi regime continue:


Either way, it’s shameful that the Obama administration has blocked access to these witnesses for a full year after the attack, whose anniversary is today.  The American people deserve to know what led to that humiliation and what decisions were responsible for those deaths.  Let’s hope we’re not commemorating the second anniversary of Benghazi before we get those answers.


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This promise will be kept around the end of November 2016.

faraway on September 11, 2013 at 2:45 PM

Either way, it’s shameful predictable that the Obama administration has blocked access to these witnesses for a full year after the attack, whose anniversary is today.

Fixed.

DarthBrooks on September 11, 2013 at 2:47 PM

This is shameful. A YEAR later, and we don’t even know who these people are. let the truth come out and let it be known that the American citizenry, minus the low info crowd, wants to know what happened, why it happened, and where the president was and why we didn’t help people in harm’s way (yet we’re ready to destroy Damascus).

BTW
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/world/explosion-damages-libya-foreign-ministry-article-1.1451904

ted c on September 11, 2013 at 2:47 PM

CIA Director promises to produce Benghazi survivors for Congressional testimony

They’ll die of old age before the traitor Brennan lets them testify about anything. It’s a crime that they’ve been kept away for all this time and there should have been strongly worded letters of contempt citations, already … not to mention actual charges leveled against Brennan, Barky, Shrillary and the whole crew.

Let us not forget that Brennan (who refers to Jerusalem as “Al Quds” … yep) was the guy that Quarles worked for in 2008 as he was rummaging through Barky’s state dept records … and then coincidentally got shot in the head while sitting in his car in his church parking lot. I know, this sort of thing happens all the time and it is purely an isolated, unrelated to anything, incident …

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on September 11, 2013 at 2:48 PM

If these guys get to testify at all, it won’t be before they have been thoroughly briefed as to the loss of their benefits, loved ones, or family before they are allowed to say a word. When are we going to stop allowing this administration to do this to them and us?

BetseyRoss on September 11, 2013 at 2:49 PM

A YEAR later, and we don’t even know who these people are.

ted c on September 11, 2013 at 2:47 PM

I’m waiting for the movie.

faraway on September 11, 2013 at 2:50 PM

Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire!

birdwatcher on September 11, 2013 at 2:50 PM

CIA Director promises …

Uh, yeah – when a muslim makes a promise – don’t get your hopes up.

Pork-Chop on September 11, 2013 at 2:51 PM

OT the lacky that provided Sec State Kerry info on the rebel groups has been fired for lying on her resume, Georgetown University Phd never happened. Elizabeth O’Bagy is a fraud. How very typical.

D-fusit on September 11, 2013 at 2:51 PM

Funny how you don’t here much from Michael Moore these days…

PatriotRider on September 11, 2013 at 2:53 PM

…hear…fixed…

PatriotRider on September 11, 2013 at 2:53 PM

Reality is way stranger than fiction these days.

Brennan might have converted a long time ago.

The bad ones won…and all the current admin. turkeys aided them. Just open your eyes. It’s all in front of you:

obama
Hillary
Rice, the other one
Power
Hagel
Kerry
Brennan
Petraeus, the traitor who knew about Benghazi, but who’s zipper was blackmailed, and he said nothing ahead of the election, now for Syria war
Dempsey, oh what a huge disappointment to his oath and character

Where is Biden, btw?

Schadenfreude on September 11, 2013 at 2:53 PM

Everyone who thinks this will happen, or that there will be consequences for anyone responsible in the end, raise your hand.

Yeah, me too.

Midas on September 11, 2013 at 2:54 PM

Sorry forgot this, Link.

D-fusit on September 11, 2013 at 2:54 PM

And Petraeus needs to be hauled back and charged, too. I don’t care how many affairs he has. That doesn’t let him off for culpability in what he did. He can screw a donkey and he’d still be responsible for much of Benghazi and the cover up that he worked with Barky to effect.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on September 11, 2013 at 2:54 PM

there has to be a James O’Keefe style blackops opportunity with these survivors. Somebody, anybody might be able to sleuth around and find these guys…..perhaps.

ted c on September 11, 2013 at 2:56 PM

Anyone here think they’ll say anything “useful ?”If the stories of threats and intimidation are true, and I have no reason not to believe it, They’ll say nothing helpful…

sandee on September 11, 2013 at 2:57 PM

The CIA was once a glorious operation, even if at times shady…’cause that’s what they had to do.

Today they are a CYA, lawyered up non-entity, beholden to fools.

Schadenfreude on September 11, 2013 at 2:58 PM

The administration has had a year to work these people over. They need protection.

If Brennan is revealed to have had affairs or some other embarrassing detail in his background we will know he turned on Obama.

DanMan on September 11, 2013 at 2:58 PM

“We’re sorry, Mr. Chairman, but the star witness will be unable to appear before the committee today. Apparently, he accidentally brutally stabbed himself in the stomach repeatedly while shaving this morning.”

CurtZHP on September 11, 2013 at 2:58 PM

good luck tracking them down now with their new identities & locations

gatorboy on September 11, 2013 at 3:00 PM

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on September 11, 2013 at 2:48 PM

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on September 11, 2013 at 2:54 PM

Yep and Yeppers.

You’re sooooo goood!!!

Schadenfreude on September 11, 2013 at 3:01 PM

Offer these people some protection. Offer a reward for information. There have got to be some incentives to come forward. Damn the torpedoes people, full speed ahead and let’s get it out there.

ted c on September 11, 2013 at 3:03 PM

Sure, now that they have had time to memorize the talking points, undergone lie detector tests, and signed umpteen NDAs. And of course been coached on what answers they would cite as classified.

jake49 on September 11, 2013 at 3:03 PM

Like I said, and will say, always ask this two-pronged question. Therein lies the answer to Benghazi.

Why was Amb. Stevens in Benghazi, on the anniv. of 9/11, officially, and unofficially.

The last words have a ton of meaning. Media, wake up…oh, you can’t…you’re intoxicated by obama’s shit, you fools.

Schadenfreude on September 11, 2013 at 3:04 PM

the calls for these people to come forward have to be consistent, loud, and frequent. Keep calling them forward. They want to tell the story, they have to tell the story.

ted c on September 11, 2013 at 3:05 PM

Schadenfreude on September 11, 2013 at 2:58 PM

But….but…..Valerie Plame!
Wasn’t she so hot on the cover of Vanity Fair?

Another Drew on September 11, 2013 at 3:05 PM

Now ask the horse-faced, lurching, bugwit one question: If the CIA is comfortable with producing these people for testimony, why are you not?

Hello? Mr. Secr…HEY! Get back here!

Bishop on September 11, 2013 at 3:07 PM

where are the missiles? What equipment/ordance was lost in this operation? Who has it??

ted c on September 11, 2013 at 3:08 PM

We need to “Colorado-up” on the nation.

hillsoftx on September 11, 2013 at 3:09 PM

Hold on now, racists, Dog Eater and Lurch have been willing to produce Ambassador Stevens for questioning.

Bishop on September 11, 2013 at 3:10 PM

Everyone who thinks this will happen, or that there will be consequences for anyone responsible in the end, raise your hand.
 

 
Yeah, me too.
 
Midas on September 11, 2013 at 2:54 PM

 
If by “consequences” you mean either a promotion or a nice six figure job at Center for American Progress, my hand is up.

rogerb on September 11, 2013 at 3:11 PM

This promise will be kept around the end of November 2016.

faraway on September 11, 2013 at 2:45 PM

I think the latest we will need to wait is until the 2014 Midterm cleanout of Obama Enablers … and if the *Snowden wild card* is played again after the sep 30 CR is passed, we could have serious Benghazi hearings kick in THIS year, with Regime decapitation before the 2014 Primary season begins (always looking for the optimal scenario **__**)

SINK THIS LAWLESS, CORRUPT OBAMA REGIME AMERICA

Bad as this Syria debacle is, and bad as the NSA scandal is, and bad as the attack on the Press and the 1st Amendment is, and bad as the IRS Enemies List scandal is, ……. they PALE in comparison to what went down in Benghazi before 9/11/12, ON 9/11/12 and in the aftermath of 9/11/12

it’s good to know that a further 13 Benghazi witnesses have been deposed , before being called to testify in future rounds of hearings

we will get to the bottom of this shocking traitorous episode … it will take many months to hear all the testimony, and for the American Public to absorb the enormity of what went down on 9/11/12 … and I personally believe there was PRE-MEDITATION involved

May the terrible truth be FULLY EXPOSED

until we hear all the Benghazi witnesses including testimony from the 3 Generals and 1 Admiral who were fired by Obama, plus the first 67 hours of emails exchanged between Benghazi and DC, we won’t know the full truth

and now we have the Hero David Ubben, who fought alongside Woods and Doherty, appearing again after spending months in Walter Reed …. this man managed to SURVIVE Benghazi despite waiting more than 20 HOURS to receive medical attention for his SHREDDED LEG, —->>>> DEO GRATIAS

(It’s almost as if the individual who gave the “Stand Down!” order was TRYING to run out the clock on this BRAVE AMERICAN’S LIFE!….. .. B*STARD! )

We The People want to HEAR TESTIMONY from this man ….

we need to find out WHY Killary and Obama made those shocking decisions which led to the deaths of FOUR AMERICANS

DEO GRATIAS the investigation will continue and a large majority of the American Public support this action

I want to hear from that video-maker too …. the 0 Regime have still got him in jail

I would like to hear him questioned, under oath, about his connections to the WH …

I think the other scandals will soften up the Obama Regime, but Benghazi, fully revealed, will DECAPITATE it ……. Deo Volente …

exodus2011 on September 11, 2013 at 3:17 PM

after a year of intimidation, we are just now getting around to asking them to testify?

after a year without the arrest of any perps?

the govt/media coverup continues into year 2…

burserker on September 11, 2013 at 3:19 PM

If and when they come in to testify, we will learn that their families are being kept at an “undisclosed location” for their own safety.

The witnesses, of course, will have iPhones- streaming realtime video of their youngest child sitting on the lap of a man wearing a mask- and holding a loaded gun to the moppet’s head.

Hey, it’s the Chicago way.

clear ether

eon

eon on September 11, 2013 at 3:19 PM

4 Americans are dead
30+ injured, wounded or survived unhurt from the attack
365 days

and..

ZERO friggin’ answers……

ted c on September 11, 2013 at 3:20 PM

Personally, I’d like to hear from Colonel Bristol USMC.He was the SOF commander in North Africa last year, and he just retired. Plus I worked with him in Iraq in 2005/2006/ and early ’07. Good dude, very interesting.

MoreLiberty on September 11, 2013 at 3:21 PM

Brennan has been and remains part of the problem, not part of the solution.

This is just part of the bureaucratic shuffle that the Administration is working on Congress to run out the clock regarding the Benghazi scandal. And it is a scandal – simply from the cover-up and dodges the Administration is undertaking to hide their culpability in the abandonment and death of 4 Americans one year ago today.

Athos on September 11, 2013 at 3:25 PM

I am not buying this whole thing. First of all, there are multiple ways to defeat a polygraph. There is a reason no court in the US let’s a polygraph result be used as evidence, because they are Junk Science. A polygraph only works if the tested person thinks it works. These guys are pros, they know the drill. They are just being hauled in at random to let them know they are being watched and they had better not blab.

Second, there are way too many people involved in this that were BOG in Libya to keep the lid on it forever. There is simply no way that someone isn’t going to start talking soon and the Brass knows that. They will let them talk, but in a controlled environment, not in open testimony. They will invoke classified information to keep it quiet and off the public record.

Third, Congress will only see and hear what the CIA and State want them to hear, until one of the guys gets truly fed up with this whole BS charade and thinks he can get immunity for any crime(s) that were committed. And I suspect there were many.

Johnnyreb on September 11, 2013 at 3:27 PM

The request from Rogers for access to survivors came after considerable debate among Republicans in the House. One group of lawmakers expressed concerns about demanding access to the Benghazi survivors. Doing so, they argued, would set a bad precedent for intelligence officials in the field. CIA officers have to be risk takers to do their jobs effectively, this group maintained, and calling them back to Washington after a debacle like Benghazi could well make them more risk-averse.

We wouldn’t be demanding access to them if the REB and Hillary would tell us the truth about what happened in Benghazi.

slickwillie2001 on September 11, 2013 at 3:31 PM

….which prove MORE criminal acts of suppressing the witness testimony from Congress.

Liars. Impeach Obama, Trials for treason for the rest.

TX-96 on September 11, 2013 at 3:36 PM

Let us not forget that Brennan (who refers to Jerusalem as “Al Quds” … yep) was the guy that Quarles worked for in 2008 as he was rummaging through Barky’s state dept records … and then coincidentally got shot in the head while sitting in his car in his church parking lot. I know, this sort of thing happens all the time and it is purely an isolated, unrelated to anything, incident …

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on September 11, 2013 at 2:48 PM

A key witness in a federal probe into passport information stolen from the State Department was fatally shot in front of a District church, the Metropolitan Police Department said yesterday.

Lt. Quarles Harris Jr., 24, who had been cooperating with a federal investigators, was found late Thursday night slumped dead inside a car, in front of the Judah House Praise Baptist Church in Northeast, said Cmdr. Michael Anzallo, head of the department’s Criminal Investigations Division.

Cmdr. Anzallo said a police officer was patrolling the neighborhood when gunshots were heard, then Lt. Harris was found dead inside the vehicle, which investigators would describe only as a blue car.

Emergency medics pronounced him dead at the scene.

City police said they do not know whether his death was a direct result of his cooperation with federal investigators.

“We don’t have any information right now that connects his murder to that case,” Cmdr. Anzallo said.

Police say a “shot spotter” device helped an officer locate Lt. Harris.

A State Department spokeswoman yesterday declined to comment, saying the investigation into the passport fraud is ongoing.

The Washington Times reported April 5 that contractors for the State Department had improperly accessed passport information for presidential candidates Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barack Obama and John McCain, which resulted in a series of firings that reached into the agency’s top ranks.

One agency employee, who was not identified in documents filed in U.S. District Court, was implicated in a credit-card fraud scheme after Lt. Harris told federal authorities he obtained “passport information from a co-conspirator who works for the U.S. Department of State.” http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2008/apr/19/key-witness-in-passport-fraud-case-fatally-shot/

timberline on September 11, 2013 at 3:42 PM

House Republicans have been torn on how hard to press for this, as it might set some uncomfortable precedents later

Rupubs are so stupid, they never learn. Dems no longer play by the same rules. Precedent means nothing to them nowadays. Forget precedent. Press hard. Take no prisoners.

petefrt on September 11, 2013 at 3:52 PM

The truly shameful part isn’t the withholding of information. This is not so unusual, Presidents will try to keep their mistakes quiet whenever possible and sometimes they have both right and reason to do so. In this case the justification appears to be only their consciousness of guilt, so it is shameful, but not the most shameful aspect.

What is mind-boggling is the press complicity in the cover-up. They have shown no curiosity whatever from the very beginning. When the supposedly “free press” is so far in the tank for one side as they are for Obama, it is a danger to our national security. Freedom requires free information and that it flow freely, this is the reason the press gets protection in the 1st Amendment.

It has gone far beyond “bias” and into the area of betrayal of trust.

Adjoran on September 11, 2013 at 4:02 PM

Are any of these CIA operatives being detained against their will? That’s kidnapping, right?

Rich H on September 11, 2013 at 4:10 PM

I’m skeptical.

workingclass artist on September 11, 2013 at 4:14 PM

What do they mean they will produce survivors? Will they be releasing them from the prisons or brain washing facilities? These people should be able to live normal life of their own free will. Government shouldn’t find it necessary to PRODUCE them.

SgtRed on September 11, 2013 at 4:31 PM

How can the House, with the power of the purse, have trouble getting their attention?

Just put out word that the State Dept appropriation will be decreasing $50 million a day until the survivors are in chairs in front of the House oversight committee, take all the time you want.

RJL on September 11, 2013 at 4:44 PM

Yes, I’m sure he’ll get RIIIGHT on that.

You can crap in one hand, and wish in the other…

Meople on September 11, 2013 at 4:45 PM

Rupubs are so stupid, they never learn. Dems no longer play by the same rules. Precedent means nothing to them nowadays. Forget precedent. Press hard. Take no prisoners.

petefrt on September 11, 2013 at 3:52 PM

This, exactly. The Repubes are playing under the rules established over decades and decades in the House and Senate. Well, gee, that’s great. I guess the Repubes didn’t get the memo where the Dims have thrown out those rules, and are now playing by NO rules, at all.

Until the Repubes start playing by THOSE rules, they’re going to get no where, and outplayed on every level.

Meople on September 11, 2013 at 4:49 PM

Most honest, most open, most transparent administration, evah!

You bettcha!!

GarandFan on September 11, 2013 at 4:58 PM

Not that he brags about it, but John Brennan converted to Islam in Saudi Arabia. Now the CIA is handing out guns to the “rebels” in Syria according to a story on Drudge. Isn’t that what they were doing in Benghazi, too? He certainly is persistent in arming Al Qaeda.

opaobie on September 12, 2013 at 1:23 AM