Faddis on Benghazi
Charles Faddis on Benghazi
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Special report with Bret Baier
Report sheds light on post-attack narrative
Common knowledge overview: On the night of September 11, 2012, a heavily armed group of between 125 and 150 gunmen attacked the American diplomatic mission at Benghazi, in Libya, killing U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and another diplomat. Several hours later in the early morning of the next day, a second assault targeted a nearby CIA annex in a different compound about one mile away, killing two embassy security personnel. Ten others were injured in the attacks which were strongly condemned by the governments of Libya, the United States, and many other countries throughout the world.
Many Libyans praised the late ambassador and staged public demonstrations against the militias that had formed during the civil war to oppose leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi. The Libyan government also began attempts to disband many of the groups. The United States increased security worldwide at various diplomatic and military facilities and began investigating the attack.
At various times between September 11 and 17, eight other diplomatic missions in the Middle East, Asia, and Europe were subject to protests and violent attacks in response to an inflammatory video, Innocence of Muslims. The role of the video in the Benghazi attack quickly became an ongoing matter of dispute in the American political arena. Initially, it was reported that the Benghazi attack emerged from a spontaneous protest against the video. Subsequent investigations by the U.S. State Department; by the House of Representatives committees on Armed Services, Foreign Affairs, Intelligence, the Judiciary, and Oversight and Government Reform; and by the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence determined that there was no protest and that the attack was a planned terrorist attack launched by Islamist militants.
The debate over the events before, during, and after the attack featured heavily in the 2012 US Presidential election. In the following months, several congressional and administrative investigations were launched, some of which are still currently ongoing, and the topic remains a matter of great controversy, including the CIA's presence and role at the diplomatic mission.
On August 6, 2013, it was reported that the U.S. had filed criminal charges against several individuals, including militia leader Ahmed Abu Khattala, for alleged involvement in the attacks. To date, a few arrests have been made (none by the FBI); no one has been prosecuted.
Charles Faddis, Senior Intelligence Editor, Former Cia Operative, Host Of Uscs: Charles S. Faddis, President of Orion Strategic Services, LLC is a former CIA operations officer with twenty years of experience in the conduct of intelligence operations in the Middle East, South Asia and Europe. He has worked against the most dangerous terrorist organizations on the planet and has extensive firsthand experience with their methodology and tactics. His last assignment prior to retirement in May of 2008 was as head of the CIA's terrorist Weapons of Mass Destruction unit. He... (more...)