The claims by the State Department regarding its actions are contradicted by testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and various memoranda and supporting documents.
Before last week's hearing, of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee last week, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Charlene Lamb, admitted that she denied requests for additional security for U.S. diplomatic personnel in Libya.
Regional security officer for the U.S. Embassy in Libya until July, 2012, Eric Nordstrom, had prepared a memoranda before leaving his post, outlining the violence from June, 2011 through July, 2012. Eric Nordstrom, testified that Ms. Lamb, wanted to keep the number of U.S. security personnel in Benghazi "artificially low."
According to Nordstrom, Patrick Kennedy, the under secretary of state for management, issued a "decision memo" in December 2011 requiring that the Benghazi post be manned with five diplomatic security agents, but that it usually had only three or four.
Nordstrom sent two cables to State Department headquarters in March and July, 2012, requesting additional Diplomatic Security Agents for Benghazi, but that he received no response to either request.
A CBS report states as follows:
"The State Department has formed a special panel to investigate the consulate attack but have told CBS News' U.S. State Department correspondent Margaret Brennan that any withdrawal of security personnel prior to the Benghazi attack had "no impact whatsoever on the total number of fully trained American security personnel in Libya overall or in Benghazi specifically." There was a Quick Reaction Force on standby in Tripoli to deploy if needed. That team did arrive in Benghazi on the night of the attack, but not until hours after the assault began."
But, the Quick Reaction Force obviously couldn't get there quickly enough and it was the State Department's job to know that. Likewise, the State Department was warned that the reduced number of U.S. Security Agents and the ragtag, unarmed band of local yokels was dangerous under the circumstances. The State Department should have understood that the hired guards could not provide the necessary security armed with only flashlights and batons. They were told by their 'commander,' a former English teacher who had never even held a gun, to sound the alarm over the radio and then run for cover if there was an attack.
There's more! Read the riveting CBS reports and memoranda. There is also a link to another article on the security personnel withdrawal. I highly recommend them.
Reuters claims that in emails it obtained, State Department security officials had concerns about the reliability of some of the guards at the mission months before the attack. But they did nothing!
I guess Ms. Lamb will fall on the sword for Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton this time. But, I don't believe for a moment that the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State didn't advise the Secretary of State and that she didn't advise the POTUS.