Clinton pledges full accounting of deadly Benghazi attack

WASHINGTON Wed Oct 3, 2012 7:51pm EDT

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton attends a news conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing September 5, 2012. REUTERS/Feng Li/Pool

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton attends a news conference at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing September 5, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Feng Li/Pool

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday vowed to pursue a full accounting of the deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi "wherever that leads," but cautioned that it could take time for a complete picture to emerge.

"There are continuing questions about what exactly happened in Benghazi on that night three weeks ago. And we will not rest until we answer those questions and until we track down the terrorists who killed our people," Clinton said in an appearance with Kazakhstan's visiting foreign minister.

"The men and women who serve this country as diplomats deserve no less than a full and accurate accounting, wherever that leads, and I am committed to seeking that for them and for those who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to our nation."

Clinton's comments followed a demand by two Republican lawmakers this week for more information about the September 11 attack, which they said occurred after Washington repeatedly turned down requests from Americans in Libya for more security at the Benghazi consulate.

U.S. Representatives Darrell Issa and Jason Chaffetz also said that the House of Representatives Oversight and Government Reform Committee will hold an October 10 hearing on the security situation leading up to the Benghazi attack, which killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other U.S. government personnel.

Two Republican senators, Bob Corker and Johnny Isakson, also wrote to Clinton on Wednesday to repeat their demand that she send Congress all communications from U.S. diplomats in Libya relating to the security situation before the attack, including any cables from Stevens.

Debate over whether the Obama administration was caught unprepared by an assault by militant groups has become U.S. election-year fodder.

Republicans have criticized initial statements by administration officials, including U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice, who suggested the attacks were precipitated by anger over an anti-Islam online video.

Reuters reported on Tuesday that the U.S. government received about a dozen intelligence reports within hours of the attack suggesting involvement by organized militant groups. Despite that, the Obama administration for nearly two weeks emphasized the role of the video.

Clinton noted that the State Department had named an "accountability review board" to investigate attack, and that she had urged the group "to move as quickly as possible without sacrificing accuracy."

"I am aware too that many people are eager for answers. So am I ... and no one wants the answers more than we do here at the department," Clinton said.

"Over the course of this review, there will naturally be a number of statements made, some of which will be borne out and some of which will not. So let's establish all the facts before we jump to any conclusions and let's do so that we can get to the bottom of what did happen," she said.

(Reporting By Andrew Quinn; Editing by Sandra Maler and Mohammad Zargham)

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Comments (3)
geezer117 wrote:
Does anyone believe any politician would publish an investigation “wherever that leads”? The only thing certain is that nothing will come from the administration until AFTER the election. Until then, who are you going to believe, Obama or your lying eyes?

Here’s just one obvious point: Libya is too dangerous for the FBI to even be there, but it wasn’t dangerous enough to provide our ambassador with Marine security. On the anniversary of 9/11 no less. And after several attacks on other facilities.

Oct 03, 2012 6:12pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
donbacon wrote:
“the U.S. consulate in Benghazi” — no

There is no US consulate in Benghazi, which is why State didn’t care about security. It was probably, more than anything, a CIA nest with a dozen agents. (Ineffective, of course.)

The US does not have an embassy, a consulate or a diplomatic mission in Benghazi. There are none listed on this State Department list of all the US embassies and consulates in the world.

On September 12, 2012, SecState Clinton made two statements. She never used the word “consulate.”To describe the place that was attacked in Benghazi she used instead the words ‘U.S. diplomatic post, compound, our buildings and our office.’

Oct 04, 2012 10:51am EDT  --  Report as abuse
valwayne wrote:
A complete investigation, but it may take some time? Sure, we’ve seen how that works with Fast & Furious? We already know what happened. Our Embassies, Consulates, and Ambassador to Libya were left with almost NO security on 9/11, even though we had warning of an Al Qaeda terrorist attack? Why….because Obama didn’t want to do anything that looked at odds with his narrative of Arab Spring and a dead Bin Laden/Al Qaeda. Especially during an election campaign. So in a preplanned Al Qaeda terrorist attack our Ambassador and 3 other Americans, left with NO security, were murdered in Benghazi, and the Black Flag of Al Qaeda flew over our Embassy in Egypt. Then to cover all that bad news up Obama lied to us, and had his administration, especially Ambassador Rice, lie to us, day after day, blaming the attack on a movie trailer and our First Amendment, which by the way spurred anti-American riots in over 30 countries. And now we know of course that Obama knew at least within 24 hours that it was an Al Qaeda terror attack that murdered our securityless Ambassador, and other Americas, on 9/11, but he chose to keep up the lie. That’s what happened folks and it doesn’t take a CIA/FBI/Justice Dept investigation 2 years to tell us that. Of course, that’s what Obama is going to do. Investigate….until long after we don’t even remember it anymore, and then publish some whitewash report like with Fast & Furious and call it done! That’s how our Chicago Way White House works under Obama!

Oct 05, 2012 12:46pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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