Tags: Benghazi Scandal | War on Terrorism | Benghazi | Libya | attack | security | contractors

Judicial Watch: Contractor Told State Benghazi Outpost Was 'Sitting Duck'

Image: Judicial Watch: Contractor Told State Benghazi Outpost Was 'Sitting Duck'
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By    |   Wednesday, 10 Sep 2014 06:17 PM

Security contractors warned the State Department nearly three months before the deadly terror assault on the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi that guards were quitting "out of fear of their safety," leaving the mission "a sitting duck," Judicial Watch said Wednesday, citing department documents.

Contained in 130 pages of new State Department data obtained by the watchdog group is a June 30, 2012, report from the contractor, Blue Mount Libya, to Department of State contract specialist Neal Kern, noting an explosion on the perimeter wall earlier in that month had "promoted a fear factor" with a "lasting effect" on the security staff.

"On the shift 2200-0600 hours on 11.06.2012 [Redacted] emergency staff did not attend for his shift and gave no prior warning of absence, a replacement was not able to be sourced due to the time of evening and the bank staff members not answering their phones," an email said.

"It is believed that the explosive device set off on the compound perimeter wall had a lasting effect on certain members of the staff; this promoted a fear factor when it came to working the night shift."

Judicial Watch obtained the documents as part of its Freedom Of Information Act lawsuit against the State Department.

House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., wrote to then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that the explosion left a hole described by locals as "big enough for 40 men to go through," the Associated Press reported.

The alarming documents show "the U.S. Special Mission at Benghazi was a sitting duck and that the State Department's local militia 'security' feared for their own safety and wouldn't even show up to provide necessary protection," said Judicial Watch president Tom Fitton.

"All security indicators were flashing red and, perhaps, with a show of strength to secure the Benghazi mission, U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, Sean Smith, Glen Doherty, and Tyrone Woods might be alive today. Once again, our independent work continues to shed more light on Benghazi than anything done by the media or Congress."

Judicial Watch said the the Obama administration has not turned over any documents showing the state of security in Benghazi during the last critical weeks before the attack.

Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland, then the State Department's chief spokeswoman, claimed three days after the Sept. 11, 2012, attack that no outside contractors had been hired to provide security for the Benghazi mission; she later retracted her assertion. 

Obama administration officials, including the president himself, pinned early blame on a clumsily produced online video that lampooned the Muslim prophet Muhammad. 

Instead, investigations showed the attack was well-planned and executed. 

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Security contractors warned the State Department nearly three months before the deadly terror assault on the U.S. diplomatic outpost in Benghazi that guards were quitting "out of fear of their safety," leaving the mission "a sitting duck," Judicial Watch said Wednesday.
Benghazi, Libya, attack, security, contractors, warned
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2014-17-10
Wednesday, 10 Sep 2014 06:17 PM
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