There were a few surprises in the State Department’s report on the terrorist attack in Benghazi, which went public Tuesday night, costing three bureaucrats their jobs.
Surprise 1: The Libyan militia guarding the US consulate there had stopped escorting American vehicles “in protest over salary and working hours,” according to the findings of the State Department’s Accountability Review Board. And Libyan guards at the gates “had already begun to flee” as soon as the Sept. 11 attack began.
Surprise 2: The report quietly assigns some blame to the murdered ambassador, Chris Stevens, for traveling from Tripoli to Benghazi “independent of Washington” and with minimal planning or protection.
The report captures “systemic failures” and poor leadership in Foggy Bottom, nailing the Obama administration’s “grossly inadequate” security arrangements in Libya.
Yet only mid-level officials are feeling the heat. After all, that’s the Washington way.
The report proves there was no Benghazi protest against an anti-Islamic YouTube video, which top administration officials swore for two weeks was the proximate cause of Stevens’ murder.
What are Americans to make of that lie?