Image: Amb. Chris Stevens' Benghazi Journal to Be Published

Amb. Chris Stevens' Benghazi Journal to Be Published

Wednesday, 26 Jun 2013 04:00 AM

By Melanie Batley

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The complete journal of former U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, one of four Americans killed during the Sept. 11 terrorist attack last year on the American compound in Benghazi, Libya, will be published in its entirety for the first time on Wednesday.

Brandon Webb, editor-in-chief of SOFREP, the news site covering U.S. and Coalition special operations news, has decided to publish the journal, which details the ambassador's final days, for the value it may add in understanding the factors that led to the attack.

"Some will be shocked that we'd post U.S. Ambassador Stevens' journal. However, we'd like to point out that this is not a classified diary; it's a professional journal kept by an employee of the U.S. government. Any personal thoughts not related to Stevens' official duties have been redacted out of respect for the late ambassador, and his family," Webb, a former Navy SEAL and author of the best-selling book "Benghazi: The Definitive Report," told Newsmax Tuesday in an email.

Latest: Is Benghazi a Cover Up? Is Obama at the Heart of It? Vote Here

CNN found the diary in the days following the attack, but didn't publish it in full at the time.

But, Webb said, his website "made a [conscious] decision to post the diary because the professional journal has clear journalistic value" and contains important information, which he charged is related "to a clear and intentional cover up" by the Obama administration.

"Our bias in all of this is to shed light on the truth with regards to the Benghazi attack," he added.

According to Webb, the diary reveals the ambassador's private concerns about the worsening security situation in the region. For example, on Sept. 6, Stevens wrote about the transition of authority that had occurred in the aftermath of the Libyan Civil War.

"Militias the prime power on the ground. Weak state security institutions. As a result, dicey conditions," Stevens wrote, adding, "Islamist 'hit list' in Benghazi. Me targeted . . . "

On Sept. 10, Stevens returned to Benghazi and wrote in his journal the following day, "It is so nice to be back in Benghazi." He made mention of a number of meetings he had that day, including one with Ali Akin, the Turkish consul general who is thought to have been involved with weapons trafficking from Libyan stockpiles to rebels in Syria.

Stevens' final diary entry on Sept. 11 provides an eerie foreshadowing of the attack: "Never ending security threats," he wrote.

"Ambassador Stevens knew full well how dangerous Benghazi was, but he never could have seen the retaliation coming in response to Special Operations strikes that he was unaware of in such a short time on the ground," Webb said in his email.

"Think this doesn't happen? The Department of defense no longer has to notify the CIA or State Department about many of its activities," he added.

He said given the tenuous situation in Benghazi, he said the U.S. should have been prepared for anything, and should have been aware that something was about to happen.

"We should have known," he said. "We should have taken proper precautions before the attack ever happened to ensure that American forces were prepared to respond on the anniversary of 9/11."

Webb said Benghazi is important because it highlights a failed U.S. foreign policy strategy.

"It's time for new leadership at the Department of State, and in Washington. We need new leaders with integrity, ones who are not afraid to admit their mistakes and will hold themselves and their subordinates' accountable," he said.

Latest: Is Benghazi a Cover Up? Is Obama at the Heart of It? Vote Here

"For now all we are left with is the haunting words of a former US Ambassador, 'Never ending security threats . . . '"


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