The scandal involving the possible failure of the Obama administration to adequately provide for the security of the Benghazi consulate, where U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens was killed Sept. 11, took a new turn today as Republicans revealed that the mission in Libya was denied resources in response to requests for more protection.
In a letter to Secretary of State Clinton, House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) said he will hold a hearing Oct. 10 to consider the pre-attack security situation in Benghazi, where threats to foreigners had been on the rise.
Based on information provided to the Committee by individuals with direct knowledge of events in Libya, the attack that claimed the ambassador’s life was the latest in a long line of attacks on Western diplomats and officials in Libya in the months leading up to September 11, 2012 . . .
In addition, multiple U.S. federal government officials have confirmed to the Committee that, prior to the September 11 attack, the U.S. mission in Libya made repeated requests for increased security in Benghazi. The mission in Libya, however, was denied these resources by officials in Washington.
The letter demands that State Department officials appear before the committee and that State produce documents describing its actions and the information it had prior to the attack.
In an article today, Wall Street Journal foreign affairs opinion writer Brett Stephens referred to the Benghazi attack as Obama’s “3 am phone call,” a reference to the foreign crisis call then-candiate Hillary Clinton predicted Obama would get as president and be unprepared to respond to.
Except it occurred at 5 pm, Stephens notes.
That’s when the White House was made aware of an attack on the consulate and decided not too send in reinforcements for fear of upsetting the Libyans. He quotes Wall Street Journal reporting:
There was no serious consideration at that hour of intervention with military force, officials said. Doing so without Libya’s permission could represent a violation of sovereignty and inflame the situation, they said. Instead, the State Department reached out to the Libyan government to get reinforcements to the scene.
With important information like this emerging, White House and Obama campaign charges that Republicans are trying to politicize the crisis won’t work.
Instead, the Obama campaign now has its own 3 am phone call to deal with.