Daily Beast: State Department never requested backup during Benghazi assault

Seven weeks after the terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, members of the media (other than Fox News) are beginning to take an interest in the timeline of events on Sept. 11, 2012. Today, Eli Lake, senior national security reporter for Newsweek and the Daily Beast, is reporting that no one from the State Department requested military backup the night of the assault that killed four Americans.

Who did (or didn’t) respond to requests for help from Americans on the ground in Libya is a hot potato that has been passed around quite a bit over the last couple of weeks.

Lake cites “two senior U.S. officials familiar with the details of military planning” in his report.

According to Lake’s timeline, Ambassador Chris Stevens and Sean Smith were killed before any outside military help could have saved them. Ex-SEALS Glenn Dougherty and Tyrone Woods, though, might have had a chance.

Normally it would be the job of the U.S. ambassador on location to request a military response. But Stevens likely died in the first two hours of the attack. The responsibility for requesting military backup would then have fallen to the deputy chief of mission at Benghazi or officials at the State Department in Washington.

“The State Department is responsible for assessing security at its diplomatic installations and for requesting support from other government agencies if they need it,” a senior U.S. Defense official said. “There was no request from the Department of State to intervene militarily on the night of the attack.”

The president, however, would have the final say as to whether or not to send in the military. By 11 p.m. Benghazi time, 90 minutes after the assault began on the U.S. mission, Obama met with the National Security Council to discuss the attack. NSC spokesman Tommy Vietor said the president “ordered Secretary Panetta and Chairman Dempsey to begin moving assets into the region to prepare for a range of contingencies” at that meeting.

On Oct. 26, Fox News reported that its sources “on the ground” in Benghazi claimed the CIA chain-of-command repeatedly denied requests for military support — a claim CIA spokesperson Jennifer Youngblood disputed, insisting that “no one at any level in the CIA told anybody not to help those in need.”

Plenty still believe the buck stops with the president, although he’s been hard to pin down for questioning, unless your name happens to be David Letterman or Jon Stewart. Also on Oct. 26, Denver TV reporter Kyle Clarke managed to ask the president, “Were [the Americans in Benghazi] denied requests for help during the attack?” Obama replied, “Well, we are finding out exactly what happened.”

No, we’re not finding out exactly what happened, at least not from named sources and not from the president.

  • Steve_J

    It the light breaking on the MSM or is it just a false dawn?

    • Chevypowered

      It’s called “we can’t hold this story anymore we need to save our ass!”

      • BlueGood

        BIG BOOM!!!!

        I have been predicting that the Media would turn on the Liar in Chief for two weeks…and have been NAILED left and right for saying so….Let the GAMES STOP!!!!~

        REPORT THE FACTS MEDIA! STOP PROTECTING a JERK who only wants North America to become GREECE!

        Let’s hope this is the last grain of sand needed to start the avalanche of FACTS about the Liar in Chief!


        Las Vegas Review-Journal Destroys Obama Nov. 1, 2012

        the Las Vegas Review Journal published an editorial
        today that excoriated Obama not only for his ineptitude in the Benghazi
        attack, but also his duplicity afterward and the cooperation of a
        supine press:

        The Obama administration sat by doing nothing for seven hours that
        night, ignoring calls to dispatch help from our bases in Italy, less
        than two hours away. It has spent the past seven weeks stretching the
        story out, engaging in misdirection and deception involving supposed
        indigenous outrage over an obscure anti-Muslim video, confident that
        with the aid of a docile press corps this infamous climax to four years
        of misguided foreign policy can be swept under the rug, at least until
        after Tuesday’s election … The official explanation for why Obama
        administration officials watched the attack unfold for seven hours,
        refusing repeated requests to send the air support and relief forces
        that sat less than two hours away in Italy? Silence.

        The RJ also charged Obama with impotence as he flew off to Las Vegas instead of dealing with the attack.

        Prompt and strong action from the White House on Sept. 11 might have
        saved American lives, as well as America’s reputation as a nation not to
        be messed with. Weakness and dithering and flying to Las Vegas the next
        day for celebrity fund-raising parties are somehow better?

        The RJ pulled no punches about the Obama Administration‘s
        efforts to destroy our economy and accused Obama of continually flat-out
        lying to the American people.

        This administration is an embarrassment on foreign policy and
        incompetent at best on the economy – though a more careful analysis
        shows what can only be a perverse and willful attempt to destroy our
        prosperity. Back in January 2008, Barack Obama told the editorial board
        of the San Francisco Chronicle that under his cap-and-trade plan, “If
        somebody wants to build a coal-fired power plant, they can. It’s just
        that it will bankrupt them.” He added, “Under my plan … electricity
        rates would necessarily skyrocket.” It was also in 2008 that Mr. Obama’s
        future Energy Secretary, Steven Chu, famously said it would be
        necessary to “figure out how to boost the price of gasoline to the
        levels in Europe” – $9 a gallon.

        Yet the president now claims he’s in favor of oil development and
        pipelines, taking credit for increased oil production on private lands
        where he’s powerless to block it, after he halted the Keystone XL
        Pipeline and oversaw a 50 percent reduction in oil leases on public

        These behaviors go far beyond “spin.” They amount to a pack of lies.

        The RJ concluded:

        To return to office a narcissistic amateur who seeks to ride this
        nation’s economy and international esteem to oblivion, like Slim Pickens
        riding the nuclear bomb to its target at the end of the movie “Dr.
        Strangelove,” would be disastrous. Candidate Obama said if he couldn’t
        fix the economy in four years, his would be a one-term presidency.

        Mitt Romney is moral, capable and responsible man. Just this once,
        it’s time to hold Barack Obama to his word. Maybe we can all do
        something about that, come Tuesday.

        The fiery wrath of proud Americans is back.


        • Chevypowered

          They burned Obama real good and they supported him four years ago. Try as they might, the media realized that Benghazi was turning into a life of its own despite the MSM best efforts to shut down this story. The media implicated themselves in this cover-up, and America (at least those who cares) is none too amused and none to forgive.

    • LochGates44

      Enough to say they covered it before the election.

  • Ralphie85

    The progressives know…if Hillary jumps in front of or under the bus…this will go on until after the election. It is crucial for Obama to hold onto the presidency for all their sakes. It is a gamble hills doesn’t have a choice in making!!! If Obama wins…it gets brushed under the rug with all the other dirt.

    • walterc

      And if Romney wins, it gets written off as “previous administration, no need to investigate now.” I’m afraid we won’t know what happened until the “former Obama official” tell all books start coming out in February.

      • Ralphie85

        No..,that’s when WE THE PEOPLE speak loud and clear!!! We demand justice for those 4 Americans , Bryan Terry and Jaime Zapata!!

      • Penmar

        I don’t believe that Romney would just disregard it with so many americans and the families of those that died and the congress asking questions.

        • EEKman

          You don’t huh? it doesn’t bother you that Romney has taken exactly zero questions from anyone in weeks? He refuses to answer a single question dispute being asked 14 times. When he was Governor he roped off a long public elevator as his own so he didn’t have to talk to democratic lawmakers. he didn’t even know all of his legislators names. He’s the master at dodging questions.

          • Penmar

            Troll much? No, it does not bother me that Romney won’t answer a single question, whatever that single question is that you are talking about, since Romney isn’t the President yet. It does bother me though that Obama refuses to answer a single question with a straight forward answer on Benghazi or pretty much anything else. It bothers me that Obama insisted it was due to a video, mentioning that video 6 times in his UN speech after it had been corroborated by Jim Carney that it wasn’t the video. And that’s not the first time his press secretary and staff say one thing and he says the complete opposite. Makes me wonder who is actually running our Gov’t because Obama doesn’t seem to know what is going on half the time. About this elevator, your John Kerry is showing and who the heck cares? Also don’t care if Romney knows the name of every last legislator or not. Your last statement is, I almost don’t know what to say about that, since we have all seen Obama not speak to his press people for ages, not hold a press conference to tell the American people what is going and not answer a single question on Benghazi without telling a lie. I think out of the two of them, Obama wins hands down for King of the Dodge.

      • Garth Haycock

        No, if Romney wins, heads will roll. He is not what the Obama campaign has tried to make him out to be. Romney is not a coward like Obama and every other liberal in DC.

  • ceemack

    Wasn’t the National Command Authority watching the attack live via the feed from a drone? Isn’t this a bit like standing by and watching someone drown because he didn’t yell “Help”?

  • GoSellCrazySomeplaceElse

    I’m confused. Ambassador Stevens called and said, “We’re being attacked, but…” “we’re good”, or “we’ve got it.” If this administration came clean on anything, I’ld be surprised. They’re all compulsive liars, “yeah, that’s the ticket.”

  • http://twitter.com/DaffodilTimes The Daffodil Times


    • Garth Haycock

      Wow. You are happy because Obama sacrificed 4 American lives to protect his campaign for a 2nd term? You are the worst kind of person on the planet. To hell with you and all who agree with you.

      • EEKman

        He was hoping to see you guys put 2 and 2 together and figure out that FOX news was lying to you but I don’t think that’s gonna happen.

        • Penmar

          We did put 2 and 2 together and it equaled 4, not 8 like Obama is hoping it equals.

        • Garth Haycock

          What the hell are you talking about? The rest of the media is finally coming around to report that Obama has been lying about Benghazi.

  • elijahzabmom

    This is ridiculous and embarrassing. The world, including JIHADISTS, watched while our Ambassador and soil was attacked on 9/11. They saw us do NOTHING!


  • DB

    It took them a MONTH to come up with this lame story line? Nothing to see here folks, no one asked for help. Are we really seen as that stupid?

  • irishgirl91

    Covering just enough of the story to make sure they can say their hands are clean of cover up. I want to find out who turned down the call for help, I also have several other questions. Why was Stevens in Benghazi that night?Why was it so important to meet with the person he met with?Why did we leave an ambassador in Libya after so many attacks when other countries pulled theirs.There are so many questions to answer and it is ticking off so many americans that no one is asking them.

  • Terry

    He’s trying to blame State Dept? We’ve seen the e-mails and several depts were copied, including the WH. This is Obama’s fault, not State Dept.

  • michael s

    You cheapen the deaths of Amb Stevens and the other 13 with this string em up mentality. You’re as bad as Jeannine Pirro who said about Pres Obama. “I think when you dont state the true facts there are certain words that you can use and that’s appropriate” when Oreilly said to her” So you just called the president of the united states a liar.” But then again she didnt recognize the GENUINE liar who had a 2nd family. can we guess who that was .Oh yeah her husband . when geraldo pointed out that the president has been slandered over this story ,mr loofah sponge said “not by anybody here,and not by rational people. NOT BY RATIONAL PEOPLE his words not mine. Let the FBI do its job.