Quickie: Former FSO Richard Jackson on Missing the Point on Benghazi

Richard Jackson, former Foreign Service Officer, State Dept. director for Egypt and North Africa and president emeritus of Anatolia College writes in The Hill’s Congress blog about Missing the point on Benghazi:

The questions to ask, beyond finger-pointing and cover-ups, are therefore:

  • How, as a special CIA listening post for radical militias and al Qaida not yet re-designated as a consulate, the large Agency cohort in Benghazi was totally blind-sided by the 9/11 attack?
  • What circumstances could justify Amb. Stevens’ travel into a completely unprotectable situation on 9/11?
  • Given requests for additional security resources from posts throughout the region, including Libya, and worldwide, how under continuing resolutions could the Congress justify cutting from the President’s proposed budget the two major security accounts for the State Department, Embassy Security and the World Security Protection (WSP) program, by significant amounts in each of the past three fiscal years? It should be noted that a third, three-month rotation for a 16-person U.S. Army security team in Libya was turned down in mid-August, just weeks before the tragedy, because of the high cost of reimbursement to the Pentagon.
  • Finally, so that this is not just a rhetorical exercise and that we learn from the loss of four American lives, what will be the impact of this sad episode on the future operations of U.S. embassies and consulates, given that the presence of American diplomats on the ground is more important today than ever and that it would be prohibitive and probably impossible to safeguard our 285 worldwide installations against an Ansar al Sharia-style assault?

Read in full here.

- DS

 

 

 

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Filed under CIA, FS Funding, FSOs, Security, Terrorism

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