Video: Sitreps from Benghazi described “coordinated attacks by extremists”

posted at 10:01 am on February 15, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

Just how did the “talking points” issued after the sacking of our Benghazi consulate come to the conclusion that it started as a spontaneous demonstration over a video? A new report from Fox News shows that situation reports from the ground in Benghazi starting on September 12th made clear that the attack was a coordinated, planned assault by terrorists and not a protest run amok. Three days later, a teleconference with survivors of the attack confirmed this. Yet the Obama administration chose to insist that it was a demonstration rather than an attack — frustrating the survivors (via Instapundit):

Fox News has confirmed that three days earlier, the CIA Chief of Station and the agency’s team in Libya also sent situation reports, known as sitreps, to Washington.The raw intelligence reporting described a coordinated attack by extremists, not an out-of-control protest.

“In a crisis like Benghazi, you would expect it’s going directly to the seventh floor,” Sam Faddis, who recently retired from the CIA and writes extensively about the intelligence community, said. The “seventh floor” refers to CIA leadership – at the time, Director David Petraeus and his second-in-command Morell, among others. “In a situation like this, you’re going to be looking at it immediately … your aides are going to be asked to flag it to your attention the second that it comes in and bring it to your desk — right in front of you,” he said.

Further, Fox News has learned new details about a secure video teleconference some 72 hours after the attack.Two sources familiar with the call say it included Morell, the CIA chief of station and Benghazi survivors who were evacuated to Germany — as well as Greg Hicks, the late Ambassador Chris Stevens’ deputy.

Fox News is told that after an update from personnel on the ground, Washington’s singular focus on the video left participants in Libya baffled, angry and dismayed that Morell seemed to dismiss their on-the-ground reporting.

Instead, Hillary Clinton and the White House insisted that it was a demonstration over the video:

“We’ve done a forensic on that event. We’ve never found a reference to demonstrations from individuals who were on the ground — whether it’s the chief of station in Tripoli, whether it’s the diplomatic security, or the GRS (Global Response Staff) that went … from day one, all referrals were an attack that was underway that continued well into the night and to the (CIA) annex.”

Yet on Sept. 14 — when the bodies of Stevens, Foreign Service officer Sean Smith, as well as Woods and Doherty, were flown to Andrews Air Force base – then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton continued to talk about the video.

“We’ve seen the heavy assault on our post in Benghazi that took the lives of those brave men,”Clinton told the somber gathering.”We’ve seen rage and violence directed at American embassies over an awful internet video that we had nothing do to with.”

That’s not to say that the video might not have played a role in motivating the attack, although that’s still speculative, too. The New York Times’ David Kirkpatrick wrote that the news of the video enraged locals in his lengthy report from December, but that report has its problems, too. Kirkpatrick wrote that there was no evidence that al-Qaeda terrorist leader Abu Sufian bin Qumu had nothing to do with the attack, only to have the Obama administration declare that he did.

That doesn’t mean AQ didn’t use the video as a recruiting tool — they probably did, and it had recently aired on Egyptian television in order to inflame such a reaction. But AQ had been escalating attacks on Western targets in Benghazi long before the video was even made, including one on the same US compound that later fell to the attackers on the anniversary of 9/11. AQ and its affiliates don’t need a video to motivate them to attack American targets, especially when the US leaves such an easy target to hit in a failed-state area we helped to create.

That’s why Washington wanted to blame this on a video and a demonstration, rather than admit that AQ and its affiliates had succeeded. To tell the truth in this instance is to expose the shockingly incompetent policies of the administration on Libya and the shocking incompetence at State in dealing with its consequences. The Obama administration could not afford that accountability two months before an election.


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But…Susan Rice did the full Ginsburg and told us it was the anti islam video?

ConstantineXI on February 15, 2014 at 10:05 AM

Hillary 2016
/

OmahaConservative on February 15, 2014 at 10:06 AM

But…Susan Rice did the full Ginsburg and told us it was the anti islam video?

ConstantineXI on February 15, 2014 at 10:05 AM

So did Hillary and she said it directly to the families of the people killed in the attack. At this point I wonder who are the worst monsters, the terrorists or our political hacks.

Oldnuke on February 15, 2014 at 10:13 AM

Unanswered Benghazi questions:

• When the message came that the consulate was under attack, why were all immediate resources not allocated? As a former career Soldier who sat on the House Armed Services Committee, I am well aware of security protocols. Why weren’t they followed?

• Where was President Obama the evening of the attack? We were treated to all the White House situation room pictures of the raid on Osama bin Laden — but where are the photos from that night?

• According to the president, he ordered Secretary of Defense Panetta and CJCS General Dempsey to get the Americans in Benghazi the support they needed. If true, then who disobeyed the president’s order, and why did Obama never follow up with Panetta and Dempsey?

• Who came up with the video scapegoat excuse, and why was the U.N. ambassador called out for the Sunday shows and not the person responsible, the secretary of state?

• Ambassador Stevens had met with a Turkish representative in Benghazi, but why were his requests for additional security denied, and by whom?

nazo311 on February 15, 2014 at 10:16 AM

And they are still lying about it.

dogsoldier on February 15, 2014 at 10:18 AM

Whether or not the video had a blinking thing to do with it is besides the point, Mrs. Clinton. It’s how YOU handled the situation that matters and you get a failing grade.

vityas on February 15, 2014 at 10:21 AM

nazo311 on February 15, 2014 at 10:16 AM

I’ll wager Valerie can answer your questions.

dogsoldier on February 15, 2014 at 10:21 AM

Liar, liar, Pantsuit on Fire!

Fathom on February 15, 2014 at 10:23 AM

One other issue for the 2016 campaign: Hilary paid hundreds of dollars to see a hit Broadway musical mocking and satirizing the Book of Mormon. Her insistence on blaming a video mocking and satirizing Islam and pursuing the maker’s prosecution suggest she has a really screwed attitude about the 1st Amendment.

John Reece

kd6rxl on February 15, 2014 at 10:23 AM

Sitreps from Benghazi described “coordinated attacks by extremists”

They might as well be talking about the progressive politicians in charge of embassy security and foreign posting policies. The statement applies equally.

xNavigator on February 15, 2014 at 10:26 AM

What was the CIA’s mission in Benghazi..?

What orders did Dear Leader issue that night?

What about the map that Judicial Watch just obtained showing US assets in the region?

d1carter on February 15, 2014 at 10:27 AM

Obama and Clinton both should have been tracking this constantly all night long. Any leader who, when their people are under attack, doesn’t do absolutely everything to help them, forfeits the name leader.

NavyMustang on February 15, 2014 at 10:30 AM

Obama lies.
Hillary lies.

America seems not to care.

albill on February 15, 2014 at 10:33 AM

Yes, yes, yes, and the shooting at Fort Hood by the psychotic psychiatrist was not a terrorist act either…

DublOh7 on February 15, 2014 at 10:33 AM

OT: USA 3- RUS 2 in a shootout!

ConservativePartyNow on February 15, 2014 at 10:37 AM

Keep Plucking that Benghazi Chicken!

Ha!

Might_Is_Right on February 13, 2014 at 4:20 PM

Del Dolemonte on February 15, 2014 at 10:38 AM

…it was while JugEars was sleeping…and you know how Fox News Lies!/

KOOLAID2 on February 15, 2014 at 10:40 AM

Hope this still has play in pre-primary 2016

InTheBellyoftheBeast on February 15, 2014 at 10:40 AM

Just in case anyone needed a reminder on how the “state” is the god of the Democratic Party (or fascists, as I prefer.)

I am not sure how these people can look themselves in the mirror every morning.

Micah68 on February 15, 2014 at 10:45 AM

Well, there was an election on…and there were rebels in Syria that needed weapons…

oldroy on February 15, 2014 at 10:55 AM

Hillary Clinton is a liar. And getting your ambassador killed is way more serious than blocking a couple of lanes of traffic. Her presidential aspirations are over.

rbj on February 15, 2014 at 10:55 AM

1. It was the run up to the 2012 election.
2. Obama had announced Al Qaeda was defeated.
3. Winning was priority number one.
4. They created the big lie to cover for Obama’s naivete.
5. End of story.

Pretty simple to figure out. There’s really nothing to analyze when the truth is staring you in the face.

fogw on February 15, 2014 at 10:56 AM

Instead, Hillary Clinton and the White House insisted that it was a demonstration over the video:

And you see – she wants to be president. Another liar. Why are so many Americans so stupid?

redguy on February 15, 2014 at 10:56 AM

OT: USA 3- RUS 2 in a shootout!

ConservativePartyNow on February 15, 2014 at 10:37 AM

If I wanted a spoiler I would have been on a sports blog, that was dunce like of you.

And arguing that its all over the Internet anyway is actually an argument for not posting it here also.

Double brain dead move. Thanks.

Difficultas_Est_Imperium on February 15, 2014 at 10:57 AM

1. It was the run up to the 2012 election.
2. Obama had announced Al Qaeda was defeated.
3. Winning was priority number one.
4. They created the big lie to cover for Obama’s naivete.
5. End of story.

Pretty simple to figure out. There’s really nothing to analyze when the truth is staring you in the face.

fogw on February 15, 2014 at 10:56 AM

And Ted Cruz needs to get out there and say that. And he will. And he needs to let Hillary choke on it.

redguy on February 15, 2014 at 10:58 AM

OT: USA 3- RUS 2 in a shootout!

ConservativePartyNow on February 15, 2014 at 10:37 AM

Oh how I hate the shootouts. Real men perfer overtime or even better suden death. Someone in the NHL should realize that there is nothing wrong with a tie in a non playoff game.

MrsGsBoyTommy on February 15, 2014 at 10:58 AM

Like global warming, errr, climate change, the Benghazi travesty is already a “settled science” in the minds of the liberal media and their pundits, who have brushed this all under their political rugs, (and the rags won’t write about it either).

“No one cares about a “phony scandal” they will say, so let’s move on. Besides, Barack Obama didn’t know about any of this until he read it in a Las Vegas newspaper days later. Pay no attention to what he said in the Rose Garden or at the U.N. more than a week later. We’ve had enough Chris Christie postings and al gore-like blizzards for the liberal pundits to say, “at this point, what difference does it make”. Even Matt Drudge can’t come up with a headliner any better than “America is Freezing”. Where’s Andrew Breitbart when we need him?

Rovin on February 15, 2014 at 10:59 AM

What about the map that Judicial Watch just obtained showing US assets in the region?

d1carter on February 15, 2014 at 10:27 AM

I have been asking about this for a long time. Blink keeps saying that there is no way we could have responded in time. I say we could have. The map from JW proves we had the assets near enough to respond, and an AF Colonel thinks the same.

The map was provided to Judicial Watch by retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Randall R. Schmidt, who is investigating how the military responded to the Benghazi attack. Schmidt flew jet fighters during his active duty and says there’s no reason the military could not have efficiently responded in Benghazi. Schmidt got the map after filing a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with the Navy asking it to identify the location of all its assets in the region on September 11, 2012.

But, at this point what difference does it make? – Shillary

Patriot Vet on February 15, 2014 at 11:05 AM

Meh just a faux scandal
-lsm and lefties

cmsinaz on February 15, 2014 at 11:07 AM

nazo311 on February 15, 2014 at 10:16 AM

Add this:

When the Navy seal was painting the enemy mortar position with his laser designator, who was he in radio contact with? They don’t paint a target unless they are in direct contact with air assets that are already inbound or on station.

And this:

Who gave the order for those air assets to leave the area?

CurtZHP on February 15, 2014 at 11:09 AM

Hillary Clinton is a liar. And getting your ambassador killed is way more serious than blocking a couple of lanes of traffic. Her presidential aspirations are over.

rbj on February 15, 2014 at 10:55 AM

Speaking of Bridge-gate, the Democrat Media still isn’t reporting the story that came out yesterday-a report concluded that the GW Bridge shutdown had absolutely no “death toll”.

al-AP:

EDGEWATER, N.J. — A traffic jam deliberately orchestrated by members of Gov. Chris Christie’s staff that caused days of gridlock in northern New Jersey appeared not to lead to anyone’s death or seriously compromise their medical care, according to a comprehensive review by The Associated Press of five hours of emergency dispatch audio, interviews and dozens of pages of call logs.

(Sound of crickets from the Dems)

Del Dolemonte on February 15, 2014 at 11:10 AM

2016 campaign slogan:

“If they left Chris Stevens to die alone, what do you think they’ll do to you? ABC – Anybody But Clinton”

Bring it on, you old hag. (and yeah I’m old so I can talk like this)

platypus on February 15, 2014 at 11:13 AM

OT: USA 3- RUS 2 in a shootout!

ConservativePartyNow on February 15, 2014 at 10:37 AM

If I wanted a spoiler I would have been on a sports blog, that was dunce like of you.

And arguing that its all over the Internet anyway is actually an argument for not posting it here also.

Double brain dead move. Thanks.

Difficultas_Est_Imperium on February 15, 2014 at 10:57 AM

You’re no newbie here, you know that people break into threads with stuff like that all the time, especially sports stuff.

Oh how I hate the shootouts. Real men perfer overtime or even better suden death. Someone in the NHL should realize that there is nothing wrong with a tie in a non playoff game.

MrsGsBoyTommy on February 15, 2014 at 10:58 AM

Well, the rules for the Olympics hockey are a bit different-even though Russia ended up losing, they may still get a bye in the next round, and had the US lost it would have probably been the same scenario.

And the shootout rules are different than from the NHL, too. The teams can use the same player for each shot in the Olympics, which is what the US team did. T.J. Oshie shot all 8 shootout shots on goal.

Del Dolemonte on February 15, 2014 at 11:15 AM

nazo311 on February 15, 2014 at 10:16 AM

Congressman Trey Gowdy asked several of the same questions you did. You might be surprised who he’s asking them to.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1jeJmeeMjs

Flora Duh on February 15, 2014 at 11:19 AM

WTF…… Now on to real news

http://youtu.be/XUHUCBs6Haw

roflmmfao

donabernathy on February 15, 2014 at 11:20 AM

America seems not to care.

albill on February 15, 2014 at 10:33 AM

America cares. Boner and company are spineless cowards, with no morals, scruples or ethics.

dogsoldier on February 15, 2014 at 11:21 AM

Flora Duh on February 15, 2014 at 11:19 AM

Bingo! The State Run Media knows this scandal has long term consequences for their chosen Party! The NYT tried to provide cover with its flawed “investigation”.
BTW, anybody heard from the FBI’s investigation..?

d1carter on February 15, 2014 at 11:29 AM

Wonder how many millions these “extremists” (just plain old Al-Qaeda really) is getting from the U.S. government?

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 15, 2014 at 11:29 AM

Dr. ZhivBlago on February 15, 2014 at 11:29 AM

In Cambridge, Syria, or Iraq?

dogsoldier on February 15, 2014 at 11:30 AM

Was Mrs. Clinton under oath? Like husband, like wife.

Under withering questioning from Ron Johnson, pressing her to admit that there was never evidence that there was a demonstration in Libya before the attack, she answered:

“With all due respect, the fact is we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided that they’d they go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make?”

Her clear implication is that “guys out for a walk” was still a reasonable interpretation of the events when Susan Rice provided a false narrative on television.

But it was not reasonable, and the extensive line of questioning from Johnson had made it impossible for her to obfuscate. So she became indignant, and… lied.

Out of context, her statement seems defensible. In context, it was blatant.

I am reminded of Mr. Clinton claiming he did not “remember” if he had ever been alone with Ms. Lewinsky. (Out of context, maybe not a significant statement, but in the context of the questioning at the time…intentional, blatant obfuscation, and a lie.)

Alopen on February 15, 2014 at 11:30 AM

When the Navy seal was painting the enemy mortar position with his laser designator, who was he in radio contact with? They don’t paint a target unless they are in direct contact with air assets that are already inbound or on station.

And this:

Who gave the order for those air assets to leave the area?

CurtZHP on February 15, 2014 at 11:09 AM

You are correct, because you’re putting a bullseye on your butt.

dogsoldier on February 15, 2014 at 11:32 AM

but, but, that it WAS an offensive video… that we had nothing to do with!

RedManBlueState on February 15, 2014 at 11:32 AM

People died, Obama lied.

climbnjump on February 15, 2014 at 11:40 AM

The question the White House refuses to answer and the media refuses to follow up on – where was Obama the night of the Benghazi attack. The next day, as scheduled, he flew to Las Vegas for a fund-raising rally.

bw222 on February 15, 2014 at 11:43 AM

Meh just a faux scandal
-lsm and lefties

cmsinaz on February 15, 2014 at 11:07 AM

Five types of libs on this issue.

(1) Those that know it is a either a true scandal or a possibility and don’t care because they see it as a military issue. I know…I know…very misplaced thinking.

(2) Those that know the truth, but will protect President Obama/Clinton at any cost. “End Justifies Means” types of idiots I battle on an on-going basis.

(3) Those that don’t care as long as they get their political wish or government goodie. See Libby for this type of thinking; as Black/Gay issues are more important to him than the death of four American men.

(4) This is the biggest category…..Those with a political IQ of 77 (HT to Del for that label) who don’t care about most political issues. They are fine being lied to.

(5) Group of a few that know the truth and are still trying to talk about the issue. This group is being silenced at every turn.

Now, what group am I part of?

Group five. Between this and the ACA, my liberal card has been pulled, but I fight the fight I think is just and will deal with the dealt cards when appropriate.

HonestLib on February 15, 2014 at 11:47 AM

To tell the truth in this instance is to expose the shockingly incompetent policies of the administration on Libya and the shocking incompetence at State in dealing with its consequences.

You forget. Incompetence is a hallmark of this administration.

As for “accountability”, forget it.

GarandFan on February 15, 2014 at 11:52 AM

I am pleased to announce this morning that I will be co-prodoucing “BLOWBACK,”, a feature film based on the NYT bestseller, “Benghazi: The Definitive Report,” written by Brandon Webb and Jack Murphy.

Preliminary details of of the project, presently in development with Executive Producer and JW Endeavor CEO Jan Wellmann, may be found at the link above.

Production is tentatively scheduled to begin in August, and I will continue to provide updates as the film progresses.

Eric in Hollywood on February 15, 2014 at 11:54 AM

Not a smidgen of corruption I tell ya! Not a smidge!

/s

MJBrutus on February 15, 2014 at 11:57 AM

Can we see some survivors, please?

Cindy Munford on February 15, 2014 at 12:00 PM

Can we see some survivors, please?

Cindy Munford on February 15, 2014 at 12:00 PM

All work under standard NDAs, but three were required to sign an additional NDA that had the effect of chilling the other 31 survivors.

Currently employed will forfeit their careers and most employment in their field of expertise.

Those retired would forfeit their means of support.

Tough decision to make knowing that coming forward will most likely not be of any meaningful outcome. Would you trust your livelihood, while knowing you will be chasing windmills, with Issa or any other Republican in power.

Both Dems and Reps no longer give support to whistle blowers. Sad state of affairs for both parties.

HonestLib on February 15, 2014 at 12:41 PM

John Boehner should have authorized a select committee on Benghazi and on the IRS over a year ago.

The fact that he did not is just another piece of evidence that the current Repub leadership is just as much a part of the DC culture of corruption as are the Dems.

georgealbert on February 15, 2014 at 12:42 PM

Clinton should have been pilloried at the least and executed at the most.

Murphy9 on February 15, 2014 at 12:51 PM

Sad state of affairs for both parties.

HonestLib on February 15, 2014 at 12:41 PM

There’s barely a dime’s worth of difference between them. If I had the money I would support just one of these people while they made the legal effort to inform the American people. That confidentiality stuff might fly for a private employer but we are these folks employers and we have a right to know what their supervisors are subjecting them to.

Cindy Munford on February 15, 2014 at 12:59 PM

(4) This is the biggest category…..Those with a political IQ of 77 (HT to Del for that label) who don’t care about most political issues. They are fine being lied to.

HonestLib on February 15, 2014 at 11:47 AM

To be fair, CW coined that term and uses it to describe the hilariously-named “nonpartisan”.

Del Dolemonte on February 15, 2014 at 1:13 PM

The question the White House refuses to answer and the media refuses to follow up on – where was Obama the night of the Benghazi attack. The next day, as scheduled, he flew to Las Vegas for a fund-raising rally.

bw222 on February 15, 2014 at 11:43 AM

High, drunk, maybe on a date with Beyonce; we’ll never know.

slickwillie2001 on February 15, 2014 at 1:23 PM

Baby killers don’t care about any life other than their own.

crosshugger on February 15, 2014 at 1:55 PM

The “seventh floor” refers to CIA leadership – at the time, Director David Petraeus and his second-in-command Morell, among others.

“I believe Hillary Clinton would make a great president” so said Petraeus a few days ago.
Has David Petraeus betrayed us?

Herb on February 15, 2014 at 1:57 PM

the special forces operatives whose camaraderie and loyalty outlives the system that fails them.

Eric in Hollywood, those words scream out for justice. Thank you for your efforts. May you and the others be successful in the search for truth.

jazzuscounty on February 15, 2014 at 2:04 PM

That doesn’t mean AQ didn’t use the video as a recruiting tool — they probably did, and it had recently aired on Egyptian television in order to inflame such a reaction

Unlikely. Watch the video. It’s sophomoric and most people would turn it off before it finished. No discernible political point is made, and if you consider that AQ generally focuses on physical mayhem, it’s out-of-character to expect such false-flag psy-ops from them. The fact that it was aired in Egypt doesn’t mean AQ approved it.

virgo on February 15, 2014 at 2:05 PM

The “seventh floor” refers to CIA leadership – at the time, Director David Petraeus and his second-in-command Morell, among others.

“I believe Hillary Clinton would make a great president” so said Petraeus a few days ago.

Has David Petraeus betrayed us?

Herb on February 15, 2014 at 1:57 PM

Problems with that statement are many, starting with the fact that he’s a disgraced former CIA Director.

But the main problem is that he praised Hillary in relation to Ben Ghazi, which means that any Hillary Knee Pad who wants to wave his “endorsement” around will have to censor what he said about a subject they clearly don’t want to discuss.

Del Dolemonte on February 15, 2014 at 2:06 PM

Eric in Hollywood at 11:54 re: Blowback. Thank you and all those involved in making this come to life. What is the tentative date for release?

31giddyup on February 15, 2014 at 2:15 PM

“I believe Hillary Clinton would make a great president” so said Petraeus a few days ago.
Has David Petraeus betrayed us?

Herb on February 15, 2014 at 1:57 PM

You really think that Broadwell is all that the NSA has on Petraeus?

slickwillie2001 on February 15, 2014 at 2:25 PM

Has David Petraeus betrayed us?

Herb on February 15, 2014 at 1:57 PM

Do bears shit in the woods?

Solaratov on February 15, 2014 at 2:40 PM

Eric in Hollywood at 11:54 re: Blowback. Thank you and all those involved in making this come to life. What is the tentative date for release?

31giddyup on February 15, 2014 at 2:15 PM

Hoping for an August 2015 release, but that, of course, is subject to change, depending upon circumstances.

Paramount is said to have a Benghazi film in the works, as well, but with Jan having secured the rights to the most authoritative source material available, that undercuts much of the credibility they’d have. If they proceed anyway, we’d of course want to try to beat them to the punch, but won’t do so at the expense of production quality.

Eric in Hollywood on February 16, 2014 at 8:34 AM

And Obama and Clinton have succeeded in keeping the lid on this. No one died in Watergate and Nixon didn’t even authorize it; just covered up for his loyal aids as we know from his tapes. And what have we with Benghazi, the IRS, the NSA, the green loans to cronies, violation of the War Powers Act over Libya, the Executive Orders that violate the Constitution as with 29 illegal changes on ObamaCare and other illegal acts? The Democrats were drafting impeachment charges against Nixon for minor actions compare to this President. If Nixon was a crook, what is Obama?

amr on February 16, 2014 at 7:27 PM