From subsequent references to an “other government agency” or “other government entity,” it became clear that the additional building shown on the photo was in fact a CIA base, the home of a CIA “rapid response force” with between seven and 12 members. This force was comparable to the Site Security Team which Lt. Col. Wood said he had requested in vain. It emerged from the hearings that these CIA personnel were not under State Department command. As Dana Milbank noted on October 11 in the Washington Post, “the victims may have been let down not by the State Department but by the CIA.” So where had this considerable CIA force been during the attack on the consulate? Why had the CIA failed to defend the American Ambassador’s life? Could the CIA Mormon Mafia somehow have been responsible for this failure? Was this why the Mormon loyalist Chaffetz was so anxious to hide the evidence?
The existence of the CIA base had been first suggested by a September 23 New York Times article by Eric Schmitt, Helene Cooper, and Michael S. Schmidt, which reported that more than two dozen American personnel had been evacuated from Benghazi on September 11, including “about a dozen CIA operatives and contractors, who played a crucial role in conducting surveillance and collecting information on an array of armed militant groups in and around the city.” It might be more accurate to say that the CIA was providing liaison with armed groups in the infamous Benghazi-Derna-Tobruk or Cyrenaica terrorist corridor, terrorists which NATO was widely known to have been deploying into Syria through Turkey. But the question remained: why had the CIA forces not helped to defend the consulate when it came under attack? Was it to help manufacture an incident which Romney could use to defeat Obama?
On October 11, in his article entitled “Security Lapses Indeed,” Dana Milbank revealed in the Washington Post that his paper and the New York Times had been asked by the Obama administration not to reveal details about the CIA’s Benghazi base.
The late Ambassador Stevens had reportedly been in close contact with the militias of the Benghazi-Derna-Tobruk corridor since no later than 2008, when he had served as Vice Consul in Benghazi. His last visitor on September 11 was a Turkish diplomat who departed from the consulate at about 8:30 p.m. Was the subject of this meeting the deployment of more jihadis from Cyrenaica through Turkey into Syria? According to leveymg writing in the Daily Kos of September 14, “Stevens believed that he was safe because he routinely worked with Libyan militant groups in the area.” But suddenly, something changed.
Leveymg of the Daily Kos argues that working closely with Ambassador Stevens starting in March-April 2011 was evidently former CIA employee James F. Smith, a former director of the infamous Blackwater private military firm who became the boss of SCG International, a private security firm, according to a March 19, 2012 report by Yazan al-Saadi in the English edition of Al-Akhbar of Beirut based on alleged e-mails from the private intelligence firm Stratfor which that paper had obtained. These e-mails include a report that, after the death of Col. Gaddafi, Smith had been sent by the US government to contact Syrian opposition figures in Turkey to determine “how they can help in regime change.”
According to one of the supposed Stratfor e-mails obtained by Al-Akhbar, “Source [presumably James F. Smith] and Dr. Walid Phares are getting air cover [political support] from [Republican North Carolina] Congresswoman Myrick to engage Syrian opposition in Turkey (non-MB and non-Qatari) on a fact finding mission for Congress. The true mission is how they can help in regime change.” Rep. Sue Myrick, an Islamophobic reactionary, is a member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. She has announced her retirement.
Dr. Walid Phares has been named as a member of the Islamophobia network in Fear, Inc., a 2011 report issued by the Center for American Progress. This Islamophobia network, of which the best known figure is the neocon John Bolton, Romney’s chief foreign policy adviser and probable secretary of state in a Romney administration, is implicated in the production of the anti-Muslim film which set off the protests in two dozen countries on and after September 11, 2012.
Walid Phares is a Lebanese Christian who was named on October 20, 2011 as Special Advisor to Mitt Romney and co-chairman of Romney’s Middle East Advisory Group. According to Mother Jones, Phares in the 1980s was a “close adviser to Samir Geagea, a Lebanese warlord.” Phares’ appointment as a Romney advisor was also criticized by The Daily Beast, Politico, Salon, and The New Republic. Serwer reports that Phares had told a third party that “Romney had promised Phares a high-ranking White House job helping craft US policy in the Middle East should the ex-governor win in 2012.”
Ironically, when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appeared to defend her policy at a conference on the Maghreb region held at the Center for Strategic and International Relations on October 12, she was introduced by the Mormon General Brent Scowcroft, a former National Security Council chief and close associate of Henry Kissinger, who is a grey eminence of the Mormon Mafia. Of course, if security was lacking in Benghazi, Mrs. Clinton should be held responsible. She is in any case about to resign.