Tags: Benghazi Scandal | Jason Chaffetz | Questions | Remain | Leon Panetta | Benghazi

Jason Chaffetz: Serious Questions Remain About Leon Panetta, Benghazi

(Fox News/"America's Newsroom")

By    |   Friday, 08 Jan 2016 02:27 PM

There are serious questions about why the military assets near the diplomatic compound in Benghazi weren't called in to help during the attacks that killed several staff workers, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, on Sept. 11, 2012, Rep. Jason Chaffetz said Friday.

"I believe we had assets that were in close proximity, but why weren't they called in to rescue those people," the Utah Republican told Fox News' "America's Newsroom" co-host Martha MacCallum.

Chaffetz, who heads the House Oversight Committee and has participated in investigating the Benghazi attacks, also disagreed with former Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, who is testifying before the House Select Committee on Benghazi on Friday on the matter of whether an order was given for the military to stand down.

Thursday, Panetta told MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell that "from the role I played as secretary of defense, there was never any order to stand down. On the contrary, the whole effort was to do everything possible to try to save lives."

"There are a lot of people that believe that the Secretary of State [Hillary Clinton] and the State Department was not asking or requesting for that type of support as it was going down," said Chaffetz.

"And I think that's a question that the committee is looking very closely at. You've got to also understand that roughly 10, 12 hours prior, there were people going over the walls of our embassy in Egypt, and it's 9/11.

"It begs the question, are you telling me I could get on a Delta flight in Washington, D.C., fly to Paris, change planes and get to Tripoli faster than our United States military? I don't believe it."

Chaffetz said that Panetta, along now retired Gen. Carter Ham met with the president and needed to know what the orders were, and the president was "seemingly not engaged.

"I also don't understand why the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and Leon Panetta, the Secretary of Defense, don't even speak that night," said Chaffetz. "How does that happen? I mean, we've got a crisis, you've got people dying, and they don't even talk? That's not leadership."

Further Panetta said on Thursday that after he met with the president, decisions were made to deploy forces, but "the problem was that the attack ended quickly, and because of time and distance we never had a chance to get there," a statement Chaffetz called "absolutely not true, and it's offensive."

"We had what's called a fast team that was supposed to deploy to Tripoli to secure the embassy there, and when they went to go get on the plane in their uniforms — and there's a reason why our military wears uniforms — the State Department folks actually said, 'no, you've got to go in on plain clothes,' and it delayed them for at least an hour," Chaffetz said.

"If you go back and look at the very first public comments that the secretary of defense made, he said, 'well, you don't want to put people in harm's way.' And a few days later he pulled those comments back. So the record is pretty clear what he said publicly."

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 
1Like our page
2Share
Newsfront
There are serious questions about why the military assets near the diplomatic compound in Benghazi weren't called in to help during the attacks that killed several staff workers, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, on Sept. 11, 2012, Rep. Jason Chaffetz said Friday.
Jason Chaffetz, Questions, Remain, Leon Panetta, Benghazi
520
2016-27-08
Friday, 08 Jan 2016 02:27 PM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved