Report: State Department’s Arms-to-Rebels Program Led to Slain Ambassador’s Mission in Benghazi

Ambassador Chris Stevens, killed along with three other Americans in the September terrorist attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, was reportedly attempting to buy back arms sold to Libyan rebels. Roger L. Simon of PJ Media reports that whistleblowers are prepared to testify that a State Department program of arming insurgents who overthrew Libyan dictator Moammar Gaddafi was the secret the Obama administration sought to conceal:

The former diplomats inform PJM the new revelations concentrate in two areas — what Ambassador Chris Stevens was actually doing in Benghazi and the pressure put on General Carter Ham, then in command of U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) and therefore responsible for Libya, not to act to protect jeopardized U.S. personnel.
Stevens’ mission in Benghazi, they will say, was to buy back Stinger missiles from al-Qaeda groups issued to them by the State Department, not by the CIA. Such a mission would usually be a CIA effort, but the intelligence agency had opposed the idea because of the high risk involved in arming “insurgents” with powerful weapons that endanger civilian aircraft.
Hillary Clinton still wanted to proceed because, in part, as one of the diplomats said, she wanted “to overthrow Gaddafi on the cheap.”
This left Stevens in the position of having to clean up the scandalous enterprise when it became clear that the “insurgents” actually were al-Qaeda – indeed, in the view of one of the diplomats, the same group that attacked the consulate and ended up killing Stevens.

Such testimony, if verified, might help explain why Obama administration officials spent several days after the deadly Libyan attack — which occurred on the 11th anniversary of the 2001 9/11 attacks — promoting the falsehood that the four Americans killed in Benghazi died as a result of “demonstrations” inspired by a YouTube video.

Investigation of the Obama administration’s handling of the Benghazi scandal has exposed the editing of so-called “talking points” that officials developed to brief Congress and the public about the Sept. 11 attack that killed Ambassador Stevens, State Department information officer Sean Smith, and two embassy security personnel, Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods. White House spokesman Jay Carney last week sought to dismiss the controversy as a Republican “concoction,” and senior Obama adviser Dan Pfeiffer said Sunday that it is “offensive” to question the president’s actions on Benghazi.

Ambassador Steven’s deputy in Libya, Gregory Hicks, testified about the attack during a May 8 hearing of the House Oversight Committee. Republicans are prepared to follow up on Hicks’s testimony, which contradicted findings of an Accountability Review Board (ARB) report, Julian Pecquet reports in The Hill:

The star witness in the Benghazi investigation said former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton personally ordered Ambassador Chris Stevens to set up a permanent post in the restive city and should have known about deteriorating security. . . .
“According to Stevens, Secretary Clinton wanted Benghazi converted into a permanent constituent post,” Hicks testified.
“Timing for this decision [to visit the region on Sept. 11] was important. Chris needed to report before Sept. 30, the end of the fiscal year, on the … political and security environment in Benghazi.”
He said Pickering appeared “surprised.”
“I did tell the Accountability Review Board that Secretary Clinton wanted the post made permanent,” Hicks testified. . . .
The ARB appears to have ignored Hicks’s statement in its public report. Instead, the board appeared to place responsibility on Stevens.

Congressmen were scheduled today to hear classified testimony from U.S. military officials in a closed-door session of the House Armed Services Committee. Byron York of the Washington Examiner reports that the committee’s Republican chairman, California Rep. Buck McKeon, will ask Pentagon officials if the government “did everything it could to save Americans whose lives were at risk in the chaotic hours of Sept. 11, 2012.”




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