Tuesday, May 21, 2024
Hawai'i Free Press

Current Articles | Archives

Thursday, March 14, 2013
What We Still Don't Know About Benghazi
By Heritage Foundation @ 1:38 PM :: 4105 Views :: National News

What We Still Don't Know About Benghazi


Yesterday, President Obama nominated a new ambassador to Libya to succeed Christopher Stevens, who was killed in the terrorist attack in Benghazi last September 11. Six months after that attack—and two federal investigations later—we still have an alarmingly small amount of information about it.

The Obama Administration made quite a mess in the media with its conflicting accounts of the attack, originally blaming a controversial YouTube video for sparking protests abroad.

>>>Watch our video about the Obama Administration’s conflicting accounts of the Benghazi attack

After it came out that it was, in fact, a terrorist attack with ties to al-Qaeda, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton shocked Americans with her statement, “What difference, at this point, does it make?”

As Heritage expert James Phillips said, Clinton’s brush-off “indicates that the Administration misunderstands the nature and scope of the Islamist terrorist threat.”

With a new Secretary of State and a new Libya team on the way, Benghazi can’t just be swept under the rug—because the safety of all of our diplomats is at stake.

Both the State Department and the Senate have tried to figure out what went wrong in hopes of ensuring that such a tragedy would not happen again. So far, they have failed.

Heritage experts note in a detailed new paper that “Fully understanding the September 11, 2012, terrorist attack on the U.S. facility in Benghazi is vital to preparing for future security threats to American embassies, consulates, and diplomatic missions.” Lives depend on what the government learns from this attack.

Scott G. Erickson, Jessica Zuckerman, and Steven P. Bucci explain that four key questions remain unanswered:

  1. Which counterterrorism and early-warning measures were in place to address security threats?
  2. Which risk assessments were performed and which risk-mitigation measures were adopted before the attack?
  3. What kind of contingency planning was undertaken and exercised to respond to armed assaults against U.S. facilities in Benghazi?
  4. How was the interagency response to the incident organized and managed?

These are fundamental questions—questions that should have been answered by now. And as the authors note, the conflicting accounts produced by the Obama Administration have made this inquiry unsettling from the start:

Given the conflicting narrative produced by the Obama Administration, there are two possible explanations. One possibility is that officials within the White House were uninformed, meaning communication with the State Department was woefully lacking. The other is that individuals within the White House consciously and deliberately promoted a public explanation of the Benghazi attack that was at odds with reality.Our experts recommend that Congress establish a Congressional Select Committee to find answers. This type of committee steps in when there are sensitive issues relating to security—Select Committees investigated both Watergate and the Iran-Contra affair.

When dealing with the lives of American personnel abroad, it is not enough to issue a committee report. The State Department needs thorough answers, and then it needs to put the recommendations into action.

The life of the new ambassador to Libya may depend on it.


Lessons from Benghazi: Investigation Leaves Important Questions Unanswered

Today at 1:45 p.m. ET, Ernest Istook—Heritage Distinguished Fellow and host of Istook Live!—will moderate a panel on “Benghazi and Its Aftermath: U.S. Middle East and Southwest Asia Policy” at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). You can check out a live stream of the conference here.

Read the Morning Bell and more en español every day at Heritage Libertad.



  • After going nearly four years without producing a budget resolution, Senate Democrats released a plan yesterday that is a mix of higher taxes and higher spending, chronic deficits and debt, and a relentlessly growing federal government.
  • Pope Francis is the first non-European pope in modern times. Here are five facts about him.
  • The 40th annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) begins today. This year’s event features 15 speakers from Heritage, including President-elect Jim DeMint as tonight’s keynote.
  • The United Nations is holding another conference next week to negotiate an international Arms Trade Treaty. Heritage’s Ted Bromund, who will be in New York to monitor events, says U.S. participation is a no-win game.
  • Farmers and ranchers along the U.S.-Mexico border are facing daily dangers, threats, and violence. Heritage hosts Texas Agriculture Commissioner Todd Staples at noon ET today to explain. Watch it live.

TEXT "follow HawaiiFreePress" to 40404

Register to Vote


Aloha Pregnancy Care Center


Antonio Gramsci Reading List

A Place for Women in Waipio

Ballotpedia Hawaii

Broken Trust

Build More Hawaiian Homes Working Group

Christian Homeschoolers of Hawaii

Cliff Slater's Second Opinion

DVids Hawaii


Fix Oahu!

Frontline: The Fixers

Genetic Literacy Project

Grassroot Institute


Hawaii Aquarium Fish Report

Hawaii Aviation Preservation Society

Hawaii Catholic TV

Hawaii Christian Coalition

Hawaii Cigar Association

Hawaii ConCon Info

Hawaii Debt Clock

Hawaii Defense Foundation

Hawaii Family Forum

Hawaii Farmers and Ranchers United

Hawaii Farmer's Daughter

Hawaii Federation of Republican Women

Hawaii History Blog

Hawaii Jihadi Trial

Hawaii Legal News

Hawaii Legal Short-Term Rental Alliance

Hawaii Matters

Hawaii Military History

Hawaii's Partnership for Appropriate & Compassionate Care

Hawaii Public Charter School Network

Hawaii Rifle Association

Hawaii Shippers Council

Hawaii Together


Hiram Fong Papers

Homeschool Legal Defense Hawaii

Honolulu Navy League

Honolulu Traffic

House Minority Blog

Imua TMT

Inouye-Kwock, NYT 1992

Inside the Nature Conservancy

Inverse Condemnation

July 4 in Hawaii

Land and Power in Hawaii

Lessons in Firearm Education

Lingle Years

Managed Care Matters -- Hawaii


Missile Defense Advocacy

MIS Veterans Hawaii

NAMI Hawaii


National Parents Org Hawaii

NFIB Hawaii News

NRA-ILA Hawaii


OHA Lies

Opt Out Today

Patients Rights Council Hawaii

Practical Policy Institute of Hawaii

Pritchett Cartoons

Pro-GMO Hawaii


Rental by Owner Awareness Assn

Research Institute for Hawaii USA

Rick Hamada Show

RJ Rummel

School Choice in Hawaii


Talking Tax

Tax Foundation of Hawaii

The Real Hanabusa

Time Out Honolulu

Trustee Akina KWO Columns


West Maui Taxpayers Association

What Natalie Thinks

Whole Life Hawaii