The Obama Administration's reckless negligence regarding the security of its ambassador in Benghazi is blowing open, as Washington Post and The New York Times reporters on the scene have documented numerous threats to the Embassy which went unheeded. Despite the fact that reporters have been onsite for days, only Thursday did the FBI dare to venture to Benghazi for a total of 5 hours, before leaving in military transport planes. Normally, they would interview witnesses at a crime scene, or in a foreign country where there had been a "suspicious death" of an American, for weeks, the Post reports.
Michael Birnbaum of the Washington Post, onsite in Benghazi reports Friday:
1) Numerous reports were made to the Obama Administration of inadequate security at Benghazi. At least 3 Libyan guards told Birnbaum they had met with U.S. officials to express concerns about the embassy security, and two did so on 9/11;
2) A 9/9 directive said that in the event of an attack, the 17th of February Martyrs Brigade (a militia hired to provide security, because there are no police in Benghazi), were to call for backup from their own ranks. Instead, a second militia, the Rafallah al-Sehati, one of whose leaders describes himself as a "jihadist," was also called by the Feb 17th militia.
3) The plan on how to react to an assault called for securing the ambassador as the first action to be taken. This was not followed. American protocols for security, posted on the wall on laminated index cards, were found on the floor. The plan was from 2011 and many phone numbers were outdated.
4) Posted on the wall was a list of security incidents in Benghazi, detailing attacks, explosions, and battles between June 1, 2011 and Sept. 2, 2012. Of the 38 incidents, 27 had occurred since July 26, 2012.
5) The Libyan guards hired to guard the U.S. embassy told Birnbaum their training had been for a small attack on a single entrance, not large-scale assault by heavy weapons from three sides.
6) On 9/11, one Libyan guard hired by the British Company Blue Mountain, said he told U.S. officials that the single Libyan police car typically posted outside the compound was not sufficient: "We need many cars from the military."
7) The FBI spent less than five hours in Benghazi in its first visit since Stevens' murder, and then left. Investigators spent about one hour at the embassy, then visited a "two dinar" bazaar, presumably to look for items stolen from the consulate, according to the spokesman for the Interior Ministry in East Libya, Azzdeen Alfizany.
8) The NY Times reports that the FBI now has agents in Tripoli from its national security division and NY field office, who are guarded by 50 elite Marines. The FBI is operating without CIA support, because CIA agents and contractors in Benghazi have been evacuated.
9) The NY Times reports that the FBI agents who finally arrived in Benghazi, arrived in a C-130 military plane, and were driven to the embassy in armored cars. A senior law enforcement official said that evidence was so badly "degraded" that linking evidence to attackers will be very difficult. Looters, curiosity seekers, and reporters have been through the site since Sept. 11.