Clinton takes responsibility for security lapses in Libya
Wendell Goler sits down with secretary of state
- Duration 6:31
- Date Oct 16, 2012
Wendell Goler sits down with secretary of state
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A lot of discussion of the decision not to extend the mission of the additional security team in Tripoli.
Would that -- a difference in the -- situation well Wendell we're going to find out through our accountability.
-- you investigation that's going on exactly.
What did happen there's been testimony it would -- difference but I'm not gonna draw any conclusions until we have.
These sad -- very distinguished Americans.
Given the chance to review everything and draw their own conclusions and make recommendations because.
-- nobody wants to get to the bottom of this more than I -- I wanna do everything I -- to protect their people and I also want to make sure that we track down whoever did this and bring them to justice did that request come to you or does it come to a specialist.
In in the in the department of security well I'm responsible for the state department for the more than 60000 people around the world.
The decisions about security assets are made by security professionals.
But we're going to review everything to make sure that.
We're doing what needs be done in -- increasingly risky environments around the world.
There's no doubt it our men and women from the State Department USA idea the rest of our government.
Having to balance all the time how to do their jobs.
And not stay behind high walls but to do it as safely as possible and that's an ongoing daily calculation around the world.
There was an IED attack.
Did you know about that was the White House informed about that.
I can't speak to who do what about that we knew that there were.
And problems throughout Libya.
That was something that -- came about is the aftermath of -- revolution to topple Qaddafi with.
So -- malicious -- so many weapons.
It was certainly taken into account by the security professionals as they made their assessments.
Now a week after the attack.
-- ambassador rice was still saying basically this is something that grew out of a protest against it.
Anti Islam movie.
Can you explain that.
Well I think the first thing to know is that everyone had the same intelligence but I've been around a long enough to -- that.
It takes time to assess all the information that you have -- as the intelligence community has now set.
Their assessment over the last now more than a month.
Changed but everyone in the administration was trying to.
Give information to the best of their ability.
At the time with the caveat that more was likely.
To be learned and that there would be most likely changes so.
The fog of war.
Confusion that you get in any kind of combat situation but this was an attack that went on for hours.
You know our post was overrun by significant number of armed men -- -- was attacked.
Had to be a lot of sorting out and the intelligence community as you know so well.
They look backwards to start going through everything that they missed something was there something else out there and they have to put out feelers out to find out what people do.
And they've been doing that in a very vigorous way and where -- learning more all the time about what happened.
So it's possible you could -- had the same information and -- different conclusions.
I think it's possible that everyone said here's what we know.
But it's subject to change it's what we know at present and I think that is what people try to do but I also understand.
Now having been around for awhile how impatient people are.
To figure out what went on what happened we lost forward -- really brave Americans and -- -- -- And so it's not.
Very satisfying to say look we're gonna do this right we're gonna get the information and then we -- tell you.
We will tell you as fully as we possibly can which is why I immediately.
Stood up the review board.
What do you make of the Republican claimed that the administration was reluctant to admit.
That al-Qaeda is not on its heels says the president -- Well I I don't understand it completely because we have certainly degraded.
Core al-Qaeda including of course -- laden.
But we have done.
Very focused on al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.
Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb I spoke about that you know in the past -- and a few weeks ago.
-- its affiliate form if you will.
It poses a threat not to the same extent.
As what we faced.
Coming out of 9/11 in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Be very clear this administration.
Knows all too well that we face extremists.
One of the al-Qaeda types.
New groups you know popping up that want to do harm to their own people to.
The United States and our friends and allies -- and we are as vigilant as we possibly can be around the clock.
Libya with its militias and weapons an example of why you don't want to provide weapons to the rebels in Syria.
Every case is different.
I do think that the dis arming of the militias is.
Particularly difficult in Libya because there were no.
Institutions there was no institutional professional army.
And we face a very.
Challenging environments in Libya as does the new Libyan government to who we are certainly trying to support.
I think it's a different situation in Syria -- different situation in Yemen and every situation has to be evaluated but I can't say generally.
Dangerous weapons in the hands.
As a problem that we pay a lot of attention to and we spend.
An enormous amount of energy not just the State Department but DOD -- the intelligence community.
Trying to figure out how to prevent these groups from getting access to more and more powerful weapons so it's a problem.
Thank you better thank you very much because he can keep that.