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Is the State Department Squelching Documents on Libya Attack?

Posted By Helle Dale On October 1, 2012 @ 10:00 am In Ongoing Priorities | Comments Disabled

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Is the State Department trying to cover up for its own negligence that cost four Americans, including the American ambassador to Libya, their lives on September 11?

A bipartisan group of Senators is demanding answers from State, and so should other Americans. It appears that destruction of important documents should now be added to matters for investigation.

As reported by Fox News, State has scrubbed a memo [2] from its website, dated September 6, which stated that there were no credible threats of terrorist action associated with the 11th anniversary of 9/11. The memo was issued by the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC), the office within State that monitors intelligence and international security for the U.S. diplomats. This is what the original posting read:

OSAC currently has no credible information to suggest that al-Qa’ida or any other terrorist group is plotting any kind of attack overseas to coincide with the upcoming anniversary of September 11. However, constituents have concerns around important dates, holidays and major events. Often times, these concerns are the result of increased media attention to the issue, rather than credible evidence of a terrorist plot.

There are two issues of grave importance to be investigated here. The first is the disastrous lack of intelligence and proper security arrangements for U.S. personnel in a highly violent and volatile part of the world. Obviously, State did not do its homework in terms of assessing the risk to its diplomats when the consulate in Benghazi was opened a year ago. According to Ambassador Christopher Stevens’s diary discovered by a CNN reporter, he feared for his life, a fact he would surely have shared with his superiors. CIA director Leon Panetta has now finally acknowledged that this was an act of terrorism [3].

The second issue is the Obama Administration’s attempts at covering up this outrage, at first denying terrorist involvement, then stone-walling Senate inquiries and deleting computer files. Concern among Senators has now risen to bipartisan levels. Yet another letter to the State Department was circulating on the Hill yesterday, according to the Washington Examiner, among all the members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, including chairman John Kerry (D–MA). The letter demands an “accounting of the attacks against U.S. embassies in Egypt, Libya and Yemen.”

High time for answers from the Obama Administration, which was supposedly to be the most transparent in U.S. history.


Article printed from The Foundry: Conservative Policy News from The Heritage Foundation: http://blog.heritage.org

URL to article: http://blog.heritage.org/2012/10/01/is-the-state-department-squelching-documents-on-libya-attack/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://blog.heritage.org/wp-content/uploads/Libya.jpg

[2] memo: http://nation.foxnews.com/us-consulate-attack-libya/2012/09/27/obama-administration-caught-deleting-state-dept-memo-after-benghazi-attack

[3] act of terrorism: http://www.nationaljournal.com/nationalsecurity/panetta-libya-attack-the-work-of-terrorists-20120927

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