New questions about security before, during Benghazi attack
Was situation in Libya mishandled?
- Duration 5:01
- Date Oct 25, 2012
Was situation in Libya mishandled?
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Right now some new questions about our military response or what some would say a lack of response to the deadly attack on our consulate in Libya.
In an attack that lasted more than six hours some experts are now wondering why some of our assets like F sixteen fighters based in Italy.
We're not dispatched to help the Americans under attack in men -- Let's talk about it now a general Jack he retired army four star general and a Fox News military analyst.
Also joining us nick burns are former ambassador to NATO.
Gentlemen I want to go back over some of what Jennifer Griffin was just talking about then and we've got some illustrations of this we know.
That there was a special operations team not under Defense Department control possibly under the control of the CIA.
They were dispatched from Tripoli to Ben Ghazi.
There were also a continue to Marines a fast team out of Rota Spain that -- cents to Tripoli Jennifer tells me they generally handle.
Embassy security in the security of information there.
There was a special operation force from a Central Europe sent down to city and -- base the air base in southern Italy.
There were F sixteens and Apache choppers in northern Italy.
But they were never dispatched.
And then there were two navy destroyers off the coast of Libya.
That were put in the position brought in closer to Libya but they were not used either -- general -- I know that you are reluctant to say that you know there were mistakes made here but it does seem like.
Something could have been done in a military way that that might have saved some lives or prevented the severity of this attack.
What we're for we don't force of all the security was wholly inadequate so we're not talking about that we -- talking here about the response.
And I think this criticism of the lack of responses second guessing that it's worse than suggestion of people should be fired from their jobs for this I mean.
We don't know the facts for what we do know which suggests that the response was pretty good.
I mean look what happened we had an attack on the consulate which lasted about an hour or so.
And within that time frame a response force from.
The -- came down I mean he's a tough brave guys to get into that fight and they rescued those who was still alive.
Took them back.
So there and -- and how to get into a firefight an ambush to get back safely.
And then there was another response force that was sent from the from Tripoli.
That did get to that -- next I was able to escort.
Those people who was still alive safely back to an -- feels they can get out of there I mean that is pretty good response all right.
Ambassador burns that you worked in the State Department Europe and an ambassador in a couple of different places the general is saying you know the security before hand.
Do you agree first -- Well I I agree with a lot of -- general Keane said about the response in about -- her our response of of the people in place you know my view on this whole problem is that we all have to ask tough and serious questions about what happened.
Because it was a catastrophe for the United States.
But I also believe just based on my own time and government.
That we cannot possibly know we sitting outside the government all the information that was available or not available to decision makers in Washington.
And in Tripoli at the embassy during that that terrible night.
And so I really think it's appropriate to keep politics out of this keep this out of a partisan environment there's a review underway an investigation.
Ordered by Secretary Clinton.
Ambassador Tom Pickering who is a very esteemed former ambassadors in charge of that.
Let him do his job.
And it's impossible for us I think to try to reconstruct this if we don't have all the information.
Right in front of us.
A general -- I hear what you're saying about you don't wanna reacts to quickly and you certainly don't -- -- reacted the wrong way but.
You know I've been under an F sixteens when there are flying at low altitude that is a very frightening thing why not just send one of those planes -- To make a lol pass over the area where.
Where -- embassy and are safe house were under attack.
Well we don't know the -- -- to make that kind of decision and Andy Phillips just -- a couple of things so we're gonna use noise now to intimidate.
Militia groups that have been dealing that a year ago would -- -- -- aircraft overhead constantly I don't believe it would intimidate them.
Are we going to fire.
Outside the walls of that -- at the people who are trying to get inside why you probably had people in the community watching this thing.
I mean some of those that I suggest.
We just put this to rest.
And and stuff could stop all the speculation about.
What weapon we could be used what group we could -- views we just don't have the information.
To make that kind of judgment we don't even know.
What the leaders at the annex was saying to others above them in terms of what their needs are.
-- former don't even know if they were asking for something like former Defense Secretary Rumsfeld had some thoughts.