Friday, October 26, 2012
BREIBART: Kyle Clark, a political reporter for Denver news station 9News, asked Obama, "Were the Americans under attack at the consulate in Benghazi Libya denied requests for help during that attack?"
Obama merely said, "nobody wants to find out more" about what happened than he does, and the administration was still gathering facts to "find out exactly what happened." Earlier in the day, a report came out that revealed the Obama administration denied the urgent pleas for help from CIA agents in Libya during the attacks.
"Well, the election has nothing to do with four brave Americans getting killed and us wanting to find out exactly what happened," Obama asserted. "These are folks who served under me who I had sent to some very dangerous places. Nobody wants to find out more what happened than I do."
When Clark pressed Obama a second time, the President again punted, answering, "we are finding out exactly what happened."
Obama protested, "the minute I found out what was happening, I gave three very clear directives," the first of which was to "make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to."
E-mails released this week, though, revealed the Obama administration knew within two hours that al-Qaeda affiliated terrorists were behind the attacks, and on Friday the father of a slain Navy SEAL who disobeyed orders and went to the consulate to help said the Obama administration's claims of ignorance are "a pack of lies."
Charles Woods, the father of Ty Woods, said his son "disobeyed" his orders not to go the U.S. consulate and was an "American hero" for having the "moral strength to do what was right," even if "that would professionally cost him his job" -- or his life.
Woods also said that if "those people in the White House were as courageous" as his son and had his moral strength, they would have "given permission, not denied permission" immediately after they found out about the attacks for CIA agents to go to the consulate to help protects the Americans the terrorists were attacking.
Below is the transcript of News9's exchange with the President:
KYLE CLARK: Were the Americans under attack at the consulate in Benghazi Libya denied requests for help during that attack? And is it fair to tell Americans that what happened is under investigation and we'll all find out after the election?
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, the election has nothing to do with four brave Americans getting killed and us wanting to find out exactly what happened. These are folks who served under me who I had sent to some very dangerous places. Nobody wants to find out more what happened than I do. But we want to make sure we get it right, particularly because I have made a commitment to the families impacted as well as to the American people, we're going to bring those folks to justice. So, we're going to gather all the facts, find out exactly what happened, and make sure that it doesn't happen again but we're also going to make sure that we bring to justice those who carried out these attacks.
KYLE CLARK: Were they denied requests for help during the attack?
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, we are finding out exactly what happened. I can tell you, as I've said over the last couple of months since this happened, the minute I found out what was happening, I gave three very clear directives. Number one, make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to. Number two, we're going to investigate exactly what happened so that it doesn't happen again. Number three, find out who did this so we can bring them to justice. And I guarantee you that everyone in the state department, our military, the CIA, you name it, had number one priority making sure that people were safe. These were our folks and we're going to find out exactly what happened, but what we're also going to do it make sure that we are identifying those who carried out these terrible attacks.
Posted by Steve Douglass at 9:44 PM
WASHPOST/DJIBOUTI CITY, Djibouti — Around the clock, about 16 times a day, secret drones take off or land at a U.S. military base here, the combat hub for the Obama administration’s counterterrorism wars in the Horn of Africa and the Middle East.
Some of the unmanned aircraft are bound for Somalia, the collapsed state whose border lies just 10 miles to the southeast. Most of the armed drones, however, veer north across the Gulf of Aden to Yemen, another unstable country where they are being used inan increasingly deadly war with an al-Qaeda franchise that has targeted the United States.
Camp Lemonnier, a sun-baked Third World outpost established by the French Foreign Legion, began as a temporary staging ground for U.S. Marines looking for a foothold in the region a decade ago. Over the past two years, the U.S. military has clandestinely transformed it into the busiest Predator drone base outside the Afghan war zone, a model for fighting a new generation of terrorist groups.
The Obama administration has gone toextraordinary lengths to conceal the legal and operational details of its targeted-killing program. Behind closed doors, painstaking debates precede each decision to place an individual in the cross hairs of the United States’ perpetual war against al-Qaeda and its allies.
Increasingly, the orders to find, track or kill those people are delivered toCamp Lemonnier. Virtually the entire 500-acre camp is dedicated to counterterrorism, making it the only installation of its kind in the Pentagon’s global network of bases.
Secrecy blankets most of the camp’s activities. The U.S. military rejected requests from The Washington Post to tour Lemonnier last month. Officials cited “operational security concerns,” although they have permitted journalists to visit in the past.
After a Post reporter showed up in Djibouti uninvited, the camp’s highest-ranking commander consented to an interview — on the condition that it take place away from the base, at Djibouti's lone luxury hotel. The commander, ArmyMaj. Gen. Ralph O. Baker, answered some general queries but declined to comment on drone operations or missions related to Somalia or Yemen.
Despite the secrecy, thousands of pages of military records obtained by The Post — including construction blueprints, drone accident reports and internal planning memos — open a revealing window into Camp Lemonnier. None of the documents is classified and many were acquired via public-records requests.
Taken together, the previously undisclosed documents show how the Djibouti-based drone wars sharply escalated early last year after eight Predators arrived at Lemonnier. The records also chronicle the Pentagon’s ambitious plan to further intensify drone operations here in the coming months.
The documents point to the central role played by the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), which President Obama has repeatedly relied on to execute the nation’s most sensitive counterterrorism missions.
About 300 Special Operations personnel plan raids and coordinate drone flights from inside a high-security compound at Lemonnier that is dotted with satellite dishes and ringed by concertina wire. Most of the commandos work incognito, concealing their names even from conventional troops on the base.
Other counterterrorism work at Lemonnier is more overt. All told, about 3,200 U.S. troops, civilians and contractors are assigned to the camp, where they train foreign militaries, gather intelligence and dole out humanitarian aid across East Africa as part of a campaign to prevent extremists from taking root.
In Washington, the Obama administration has taken a series of steps to sustain the drone campaign for another decade, developing an elaborate new targeting database, called the “disposition matrix,” and a classified “playbook” to spell out how decisions on targeted killing are made.
Djibouti is the clearest example of how the United States is laying the groundwork to carry out these operations overseas. For the past decade, the Pentagon has labeled Lemonnier an “expeditionary,” or temporary, camp. But it is now hardening into the U.S. military’s first permanent drone war base.
Posted by Steve Douglass at 6:08 AM