According to the WAPO, there was never enough security in Benghazi and officials were specifically warned that there was a growing terrorist threat:
A U.S. military team assigned to establish security at the new embassy in Tripoli, in a previously undisclosed detail, was never instructed to fortify the temporary hub in the east. Instead, a small local guard force was hired by a British private security firm as part of a contract worth less than half of what it costs to deploy a single U.S. service member in a war zone for a year.
The two U.S. compounds where Stevens and three other Americans were killed in a sustained, brutal attack the night of Sept. 11, proved to be strikingly vulnerable targets in an era of barricaded embassies and multibillion-dollar security contracts for U.S. diplomatic facilities in conflict zones, according to interviews with U.S. and Libyan officials and eyewitnesses in recent days.
Days before the ambassador arrived from the embassy in Tripoli, a Libyan security official had warned an American diplomat that foreigners should keep a low profile in Benghazi because of growing threats. Other Westerners had fled the city, and the British had closed their consulate.
Despite the security inadequacies and the warning, Stevens traveled to Benghazi to meet openly with local leaders. Eager to establish a robust diplomatic presence in the cradle of the rebellion against Moammar Gaddafi, the ousted autocratic leader, U.S. officials appear to have overlooked the stark signs that militancy was on the rise.On Fox News this morning former UN Ambassador John Bolton put the lack of security in Benghazi in perspective. The former Ambassador commented that he had more security when he went out in NYC as Ambassador than Stevens had going to Benghazi.
This morning Obama's talking heads gave conflicting answers about the Administrations response to the 9/11 attack.
On Meet the Press, David Gregory asked White House political director David Plouffe, "Why didn't the president come out and call this exactly what it was: an act of terror on the anniversary of 9/11?"
“Well, this is an event of great interest, obviously, to the public, to the news media. Information was being provided in real-time. Obviously, you're going to know more two weeks after an event than a week after an event. And as Ambassador Rice was-- that was the information from the intelligence community. It was the same information provided for Congress. The reason obviously we now have stipulated this is a terrorist attack is that came from the intelligence agencies. So as information has become available, as this investigation has continued, we're obviously making that information known.”Campaign Guru David Axelrod told CNN a lie, claiming that Obama DID call the event a terrorist attack. As Patrick Brennan pointed out on NRO:
....according to Axelrod, Obama knew this all along. He launched his defense of Obama by saying, “First of all, the president called it an act of terror the day after it happened.” But unfortunately, he didn’t: The president made two statements on September 12, neither of which calls the Benghazi attack per se an “act of terror.” In one, the closest he came to such a claim was:
No act of terror will dim the light of the values that we proudly shine on the rest of the world, and no act of violence will shake the resolve of the United States of America.Later in the day, he had this to say:
No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation, alter that character, or eclipse the light of the values that we stand for. Today we mourn four more Americans who represent the very best of the United States of America. We will not waver in our commitment to see that justice is done for this terrible act.
Contra Axelrod’s claim, the president seems to have taken specific pains at the time not to call the event an act of terror while still supplying some strong rhetoric. The U.S. government’s definition of terrorism requires pre-meditation (a fact with which the president should be familiar), and at the time, the Obama administration was claiming the attack was spontaneous, so one assumes that, indeed, Obama was not at the time trying to specify that it was a terror attack. (Further, some sources have now told Fox News that the administration actually knew within 24 hours that the attack was terrorism.)Both Axelrod (the president knew and said it) and Plouffe (the president didn't know because it takes a while to get the information) can't be right. The fact shows neither one of them are being honest with the American people. The President knew but refused to call it terrorism, because that conflicts with his "feel good""the war on terrorism is over" campaign pitch to the American people.