Clinton testifies about her role in the 2012 Benghazi attack, in an 11-hour congressional hearing. An email to her daughter was shown, where Clinton said the attack was by Al-Qaeda, despite telling the public the attack was a result of the video. She acknowledged that she couldn’t recall having talked to Ambassador Stevens after having sworn him in as ambassador, though she believed they had spoken. She said he did not have her email. At another point, clinton laughed when she said she spent the night alone after she left the office on the night of the attack.
I came here because I said I would. And I’ve done everything I know to do, as have the people with whom I worked, to try to answer your questions. I cannot do any more than that.
A source says a subpoena has been issued to Blumenthal. The source declined to be publicly identified because of the ongoing probe of the Benghazi attack. The source says the House panel has “a number of questions” for Blumenthal, including whether he had any business arrangements that led him to frequently email Clinton about Libya when she was secretary of state. Rep. Cummings, the ranking Democrat on the panel, says the committee’s decision to have the U.S. Marshals Service deliver the subpoena to Blumenthal’s home is “heavy-handed.”
In an interview on The Steve Malzberg Show, Attkisson discusses Hilary Clinton’s email scandal. Attkisson believes that on Clinton’s personal email server that got wiped clean there must have been some really bad or embarrassing information, especially information on Benghazi. Attkisson says the deleted data had to have been worse than the scandal that was created by erasing it. She also briefly touches on the state of the news media.
In my experience, there must’ve been some very, very bad or embarrassing things on there, because it appears as if she’d rather take the heat for the actions erasing the server at a time when she knew it was being sought by Congress and under Freedom of Information Act request, and probably lawsuits … than turn over what was really in them. To me, this all points to Benghazi…I’ve spoken to current and former high-ranking intelligence officials who are appalled by the fact that this happened, as well as her explanation. [A]t the very least, they consider [the decision] extremely naïve and would make that person totally unqualified to be in the position she served if she really believes the things she was saying about security.
[T]oo often, in my view, the media waits for the daily news stories to be handed to them. They’re not often doing a lot of their own independent digging.
Attkisson writes in Stonewalled that after Pres. Obama confronted Romney in the second presidential debate about Romney’s decision to label the Benghazi attack ‘terrorism,’ she learned that CBS’s Steve Kroft did a 60 Minutes interview with Obama the day following the attack. She says she was instructed to do a story on the debate using the 60 Minutes script, but found out later that parts of it were never aired, including part that showed Obama also apparently calling the attack an act of terror. Unaired exchange:
KROFT: Mr. President, this morning you went out of your way to avoid the use of the word terrorism in connection with the Libya attack.
KROFT: Do you believe that this was a terrorist attack?
OBAMA: Well, it’s too early to know exactly how this came about, what group was involved, but obviously it was an attack on Americans.
She says this was done intentionally:
I couldn’t get past the fact that upper-level journalists at CBS had been a party to misleading the public.
She says CBS posted the transcript to its website the night before the election, but it was lost in the final hours of the campaign. An internal investigation was promised but never happened.
Attkisson writes in Stonewalled that an administration source she names Number One who she held meetings with in a McDonalds in Northern Virginia in early 2013 informed her that he had accessed her computer. He says the surveillance was:
…worse than anything Nixon ever did.
Attkisson is reported to give evidence that both her CBS computer and her personal iMac were repeatedly hacked and files were accessed, including one on Benghazi. Attkisson:
[…] the interlopers were able to co-opt my iMac and operate it remotely, as if they were sitting in front of it.
An inspection reveals that an extra fibre-optics cable was installed in her home without her knowledge. In fall 2013 when White House officials accused Attkisson of bias in her Benghazi reporting, files in her MacBook Air began deleting at hyperspeed. She videotaped the process and showed it to two computer experts. One of the experts:
They’re trying to send you a message
The experts found evidence that the intruders had tried to cover their tracks by erasing 23 hours of log-in information. Attkisson says blocking of her work became routine under CBS anchor Pelley and his executive producer at the time, Shevlin. Attkisson:
They rarely said the story wasn’t going to air. They just let it sit around and ‘loved it’ until it began to stink like old fish.
She says stories were repeatedly rewritten, watered down and delayed until they never made air. She says they weren’t only stories about the administration but also about government waste and corporate conduct, such as questions about the Boeing Dreamliner.
Katallah’s detention motion says that in the days preceding the attack, the defendant “voiced concern and opposition to the presence of an American facility in Benghazi.” According to the motion, a group of 20 or more “armed men,” including militia members, assembled outside the U.S. compound at 9:45 p.m. the night of September 11, 2012, and “aggressively breached” the gate. They carried rifles, handguns and rocket-propelled grenade launchers. After breaching the gate, they stole a U.S. vehicle, “forcibly entered” buildings and stole U.S. property.
During this initial attack, buildings within the Mission were set on fire, and that ultimately led to the deaths” of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and Information Management Officer Sean Smith.
During a brief detention hearing yesterday, a federal court magistrate rules that Abu Khatallah will remain in jail until his trial. Court documents released before the hearing allege he “conspired to participate and then participated” in the September 11, 2012, attack on the American outpost in eastern Libya that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans. In the document, prosecutors allege:
The defendant’s participation in the attack was motivated by his extremist ideology.
They also allege that Khatallah “voiced concern and opposition to the presence of an American facility in Benghazi” days prior to the attack.
Khatallah, charged in the 2012 Benghazi attacks, pleads not guilty today in connection to the crime, during an appearance before a U.S. federal judge. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr., says in a written statement:
In a courtroom in our nation’s capital, today we took the first step down the road to justice for the four American heroes killed in Benghazi. This prosecution is a reflection of our determination to honor the sacrifice of U.S. citizens who perish on foreign soil in service to our country. We will be steady, deliberate and relentless in seeking to hold accountable all who were responsible for this deadly act of terror.
A U.S. official confirms that Ahmed Abu Khatallah, the man accused of masterminding the attack will appear in a federal court in Washington, D.C. today. Authorities believe Khatallah is one of the senior leaders of Ansar al Sharia, whose members were among several militias that participated in the attack.
In the weeks before Sept. 11, Libyan security guards are reportedly warned by family members of an impending attack.
A week before the consulate attack, the weekly report from Benghazi noted that at last “police have established a 24/7 presence at the mission in response to our long-standing request.”
The State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs puts out a warning to Americans planning to travel to Libya:
The Department of State warns U.S. citizens against all but essential travel to Libya. The incidence of violent crime, especially carjacking and robbery, has become a serious problem. In addition, political violence in the form of assassinations and vehicle bombs has increased in both Benghazi and Tripoli.
The DCA also warned that despite this progress in restoring functional government, violent crime continued to be a problem in Tripoli, Benghazi, and other parts of the country and that armed carjacking and robbery were on the rise.
Anti-Islam video “Innocence of Muslims” posted on YouTube.
The U.S. embassy requests — and is granted — a four-month extension, until August, of a Tripoli-based “site security team” (SST) composed of 16 special forces soldiers who provide security, medical and communications support to the embassy. The commander of the security team, Lt. Col. Andrew Wood, told ABC News that Stevens had wanted the team to stay past the end of its extended deployment in August. A senior State Department official confirmed to The Associated Press that despite Wood’s comments, a request for an extension past August was never made.
The State Department says:
The SST was enlisted to support the reopening of Embassy Tripoli They were based in Tripoli and operated almost exclusively there. When their rotation in Libya ended, Diplomatic Security Special Agents were deployed and maintained a constant level of security capability. So the departure of the SST had no impact whatsoever on the total number of fully trained American security personnel in Libya overall, or in Benghazi specifically.
However, AP notes that a State Department security official who was temporarily assigned to Benghazi thanked Wood for members of the team escorting U.S. officials to a dangerous area outside of Benghazi and also for providing training to members of a Libyan quick reaction force, teaching a tactical medicine class and reviewing defensive tactics. Another email from a security official in Benghazi said the staff there had spoken to Wood when he visited about equipment needed for the Benghazi mission. [1. AP – State Dept Extended U.S. Security Team in Libya http://bigstory.ap.org/article/us-embassy-sought-extension-security-team]
The compound is roughly 300 yards long by 100 yards wide. The large size is to protect against car bombs. The outer wall’s height nine feet topped by three feet of barbed wire and concertina wire and external lighting. Jersey barriers (big concrete blocks) are installed outside and inside the gate. Steel drop bars are added at the gates to control vehicle access and to provide some anti-ram protection. The buildings on the compound itself were strengthened.
The compound has four buildings on it, Building C (a large residence with numerous bedrooms and a safe haven), Building B (another residence with a cantina dining area), the TOC or Tactical Operations Center (Offices and a bedroom used by the security team to monitor outside activity on video monitors), and a barracks (a small house by the main gate of the compound).
Security on the compound consists of five Diplomatic Security special agents and four members of the Libyan Government security force, a friendly militia called the 17th February Brigade. There is an additional security force at another U.S. compound two kilometers away. It serves as a rapid reaction force.
There has been speculation that two other warehouse-like buildings on the compound which were not mentioned in the State Department briefing were being used to hold armaments. [1. Family Security Matters – Arms Flow to Syria May Be Behind Benghazi Cover-Up http://www.familysecuritymatters.org/publications/detail/arms-flow-to-syria-may-be-behind-benghazi-cover-up]
A bomb explodes in the parking lot in front of the hotel. The group in Benghazi makes a decision to move to a new location. They move to a couple of places, and by August they settle on a large compound which is where the actual activity on 9/11 took place.