By saying that her main regret during her years as secretary of state is the terror attack on the Benghazi consulate and the deaths of four Americans, Hillary Clinton continues her cover-up.
Even as she expresses her regrets, she pretends that the reason she did not act to beef up security at the compound and that she lied afterwards, blaming the attack on the Internet video, was “imperfect” intelligence information.
In fact, as the records released by the bi-partisan Senate Intelligence Committee make clear, she had all the relevant facts before her and just ignored them
This is highlighted in the text of a recent interview.
“Oh, sure. My biggest, you know, regret is what happened in Benghazi,” said Clinton. “I mean, you know, you make these choices based on imperfect information. And you make them to — as we say, the best of your ability. But that doesn’t mean that there’s not going to be unforeseen consequences, unpredictable twists and turns.”
However, “unforeseen consequences and unpredictable twists and turns” had nothing to do with her failure to secure the compound or to send adequate security to protect it. Rather, she got every sort of warning from her own ambassador, the State Department, the CIA, and the Defense Department. She just failed to act on them.
When you read the various pieces and bits of information she received in the weeks and months prior to the attack, it is hard to see how they could have been any more blunt or explicit in warning of the likelihood of future terror attacks in Benghazi:
According to the Senate Intelligence Committee:
On June 12, 2012, the Defense Intelligence Agency authored a report entitled: “Libya: Terrorists Now Targeting U.S. and Western Interests.”
The report cited “growing ties between al-Qaeda regional nodes and Libya-based terrorists.” The DIA report said: “We expect more anti-U.S. terrorist attacks in eastern Libya [redacted], due to the terrorists greater presence there.”
Six days later, according to the committee report, the Pentagon’s Joint Staff daily intelligence report included a slide entitled: “Terrorism: Conditions Ripe for More Attacks, Terrorist Safe Haven in Libya.”
It said: “[Redacted] support will increase Libyan terrorist capability in the permissive post-revolution security environment. Attacks will also increase in number and lethality as terrorists connect with AQ associates in Libya. Areas of eastern Libya will likely become a safe haven by the end of 2012.”
A CIA report issued on July 6, 2012 — “Libya: Al-Qaeda Establishing Sanctuary” — was more declarative.
“Al-Qaeda-affiliated groups and associates are exploiting the permissive security environment in Libya to enhance their capabilities and expand their operational reach,” said this CIA report.
Two months before Sept. 11, 2012 the CIA was already reporting that al-Qaida-affiliated terrorists had made parts of eastern Libya “their safe haven.”
Soon after that, a CIA officer told State Department officials that al-Qaida-affiliated terrorists had training camps “within Benghazi.”
On Aug. 15, 2012, the State Department’s principal officer in Benghazi called together an “Emergency Action Committee” to discuss “the deteriorating security situation in Benghazi.”
The next day, Ambassador Chris Stevens sent a cable to State Department headquarters in Washington, D.C., summarizing the points made at this meeting.
Stevens’ cable said a CIA officer had “briefed the EAC on the location of approximately ten Islamist militias and AQ training camps within Benghazi.”
For Hillary now to say that she did the best she could on the basis of “imperfect information” and to blame the tragic outcome on “unforeseen consequences and unpredictable twists and turns” is such an act of distortion of the record that it takes one’s breath away.
The plan fact is that this possible future president failed miserably in her first major administrative assignment: Running the embassies and consulates under her jurisdiction as secretary.