White House vs. State Dept.

This morning I wrote about the Daily Mail's coverage of science - this evening it's Libya.  The State Department has begun to covers it's and Secretary Clinton's collective hides in the fall out of the bungling of  Benghazi.

The State Department has said that it never believed the September 11th attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi was the result of a protest over an anti-Islam movie - directly contracting the rest of the Obama administration.

By trying to distance her department from the inept and deceptive handling of the Benghazi attack, which left U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens and three other American officials dead, Hillary Clinton could help herself politically for a 2016 presidential run.

Because of course, when electoral politics is at stake, it's every man (or woman) for himself.

All snark aside, President Obama's attempt at throwing Sec. Clinton under the bus may finally be the one thing that gets Pat Smith some answers on how her son Sean died that fateful day...but I digress...

The details that State has released paint a picture that we have yet to see the agenda media touch.

The surviving members of the compound have now described the overnight attack, which saw agents trapped in the burning compound before finally speeding away.

As they drove through the crowd, attackers threw grenades and sprayed their armoured vehicle with gunfire from AK-47 assault rifles from a distance of two feet.

Meanwhile, the ambassador was locked in a safe-room as the compound filled with flames.

When the decision was made to escape the diesel-heavy smoke, it was too late, and Stevens never made it out.September 11, 2012, started out as a regular day in the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.

The site is the size of a football field surrounded by a nine-foot wall topped by barbed wire and other security upgrades.

Ambassador Stevens arrived in the city the day before, accompanied by a five-person security detail.

As it was the anniversary of 9/11, the American envoy decided to hold meetings inside the secured compound, fearing possible acts of violence.

Then, at around 8:30pm that evening, Stevens concluded his final meeting of the day and retired for the night, unaware of what was to come an hour later.

At 9.40pm, security agents started hearing loud noises, gunfire and explosions near the front gate.

A barracks at the entrance housing the local militiamen was burnt down, and a large group of armed men was captured on a security camera flowing into the consulate.

The alarm was sounded and one agent, armed with a sidearm and an M4 submachine gun, led Stevens and computer specialist Sean Smith to a safe room inside one of the compound's two main residences....

...Attackers eventually managed to enter the building where the ambassador was hiding and attempted to open the door to the safe room, but to no avail.

Instead, they dumped jerry cans of diesel fuel in the building, lit furniture on fire and set the exterior of the building on fire.

Two of the remaining four agents barricaded the insides of the compound's other residence, preventing the armed men from entering.

The protesters then attempted to gain access to the tactical operations center, but were unable to enter the building despite smashing the door.

Meanwhile, the building that was housing the ambassador rapidly began filling up with thick diesel smoke and fumes from the burning furniture.

Inside, visibility was less than three feet.

Unable to breathe, the Americans opened a window in the bathroom, but it proved insufficient to fill the room with fresh air.  At that point, a decision was made to leave the building.

The agent went out first, as is standard procedure, flopping out onto a patio enclosed by sandbags and immediately taking fire, believed to include rocket-propelled grenades.

Stevens and Smith did not come out, so the third agent, suffering severely from smoke inhalation, went in and out of the building several times to look for them.

He then climbed to the roof  and collapsed, but not before radioing the other agents to alert them.

The other four agents were able to reunite and take an armored vehicle to Stevens' building.

They reached the agent on the roof and tried to set up a perimeter. Taking turns enter the building, the agents scoured the premises on their hands and knees for the missing Americans.

Smith was eventually pulled out dead. Stevens was not found.

A six-person quick reaction security team arrived from their compound across town accompanied by about 60 Libyan militiamen accompany. They also attempted to secure a perimeter around the building, but determined that they could not hold it.

Outnumbered by ‘an unbelievable amount of bad guys’ in the compound, the militia fighters told the security team they had to evacuate, according to a State Department official.

SEVENTY armed guards attempted to hold back "an unbelievable amount of bad guys"???  And we had no idea it was coming????? 

But the real scandal here is not so much the security, but the cover-up and State made sure to throw the shiv out on that.

The State Department's insistence it never bought the story - expressed by the White House and Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations - that a crude anti-Islam film made in California triggered the attack gives ammunition against Obama both to the Romney campaign and congressional Republicans.

Further more....

The State Department says it never concluded that the attack was simply a protest gone awry.

Meanwhile the investigating committee's chairman, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., has accused the State Department of turning aside pleas from its diplomats in Libya to increase security in the months and weeks before the attack.

One scheduled witness, Eric Nordstrom, the former chief security officer for U.S. diplomats in Libya, told the committee his pleas for more security were ignored.

Department officials were asked about the administration's initial - and since retracted - explanation linking the violence to protests over an American-made anti-Muslim video circulating on the Internet.

One official responded 'that was not our conclusion' and called it a question for 'others' to answer, without specifying to whom he was referring.

So Stephanie Cutter and Jill Abramson can spin the cover up and call any and fact finding attempts political in nature all they want, but the facts are that real people died as the result of this Administrations incompetence.  This President, who was too busy golfing and fund-raising to attend a single Presidential Daily Brief in the months leading up to the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, is ultimately responsible for what happened in Benghazi 4 weeks ago. 

The only reason that this subject is "political" is because the policy failings are so overwhelming in nature.  It is a very real and very stark reminder that al Qaeda does not mind waiting....they are more than willing to wait us wait for a sign of weakness - and President Obama was happy to oblige.

Yeah it is political....because American lives are at risk.

Written by LL.