Judicial Watch: New Obama Administration Intelligence Report Tied Benghazi Assault to Terrorism Group
OCTOBER 22, 2015
‘The attack was an organized operation with specific information the US Ambassador was present.’ – Defense Intelligence Agency cable, September 12, 2012
(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that it uncovered a September 12, 2012, cable from the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) to the Department of State Command Center (DSCC) revealing that the Obama administration was informed within 24 hours that the attack on the U.S. Special Mission Compound in Benghazi was “an organized operation” carried out by a “Salafi terrorism group” in retaliation for the killing of al-Qaeda’s second in command, Libyan national Abu Yahya al-Libi. The documents, from the DSCC, were provided to Judicial Watch in response to a court order in a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on October 16, 2014, (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of State (No. 1:14-cv-01733)).
The lawsuit seeks “any and all logs, reports, or other records” the Washington-based Diplomatic Security Command Center produced between September 10, 2012, and September 13, 2012, relating to the terrorist attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya. The DIA cable obtained by Judicial Watch states: “The attack was an organized operation with specific information that the US Ambassador was present.”
The DIA cable was emailed to numerous State Department recipients by the DSCC at the request of the National Counter Terrorism Center (NCTC), further confirming that the Obama administration knew the assault was a well-organized terrorist attack before President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and National Security Advisor Susan Rice claimed the assault was the result of an “unpremeditated… spontaneous protest” over an obscure Internet video.
The previously Secret document includes the following information:
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY. A Salafi group (NFI) is believed to be responsible for the 11 September, 2012, attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. The attack was in retaliation for the killing of an Al Qaeda operative. The Salafi group attended the [initial] protests and returned at night using overwhelming firepower to overtake security forces of the Consulate.
- (U) The general atmosphere in Benghazi .and Tripoli, Libya, relevant to the attack on the US Consulate, on 11 and 12Sept12, is that of shock and disbelief. A Salafi group is reported to be behind the attack. The Salafi group responsible for the violent [sic] are believed to be the same group who defaced the Islamic shrines and old historic monuments. Some business owners are siding against the Salafi group, believed to be the culprits, and hoping for international intervention to assure stability and justice. A majority of the local population is reported to hold anti-Salafi views.
- (U/FOUO) The attack was an organized operation with specific information that the US Ambassador was present. The Salafi group attended the protest at or near the US Consulate earlier on 11 September, 2012, and then returned at 2300 firing small arms weapons and between 25 to 30 RPGs at the Consulate and other unknown targets (NFI). The local police tried to defend the Consulate but were out matched by the group’s size and their superior firepower.
- (U/FOUO) The attack was in [sic] carried out in retaliation for the killing of the Al Qaeda’s number two man, Abu Yah Ya ((A1 LIBI)).
COMMENTS: (Source Comments) 1. (U/FOUO) [REDACTED]
- (U/FOUO) There has [sic]been no reports of any continuation of the protests or violence, but source suspects there could be additional violence since the attack seemed well coordinated. The majority of the population is against these violent actions, but will not openly condemn them as it will align them with those who support the creation and promulgation of the anti-Muhammad/Islamic video or view. It is believed that most of the businesses and population would support this as the majority hold anti Salafi views and are against such violence. [REDACTED]
- (U/FOUO) There was a plan to protest in Tripoli on 11Sep12, but law enforcement officials squashed the protest with roadblocks and enforcement efforts.
- (U) One business owner was heard expressing, “l hope the building has cameras,” to help catch the ones responsible.
(Field Comments) 1. (U/FOUO) To aid collection efforts, analysts are encouraged to send evaluations and additional source directed requirements (SDRs) via HOT-R. lf HOT-R is unavailable, please send evaluations and SDRs to DIRNAVCRIMINVSERV QUANTICO VA//0025//. For foreign disclosure and release of information contained in this IIR, submit a request for information (RFI) via the NCIS Homepage at: [REDACTED] …
The records are in line with other Defense Department documents uncovered through Judicial Watch litigation that also almost immediately reported that the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi was committed by the al Qaeda and Muslim Brotherhood-linked “Brigades of the Captive Omar Abdul Rahman” (BCOAR), and had been planned at least 10 days in advance. (The documents also include an August 2012 analysis warning of the rise of ISIS and the predicted failure of the Obama policy of regime change in Syria.)
“These new smoking-gun documents show that intelligence tied the Benghazi attack to terrorists not to any videos,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “It is inescapable that Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Susan Rice knowingly lied about the Benghazi terrorist attack. We would hope that the Benghazi Select Committee will try to get some accountability from Hillary Clinton for her deadly dishonesty. And, frankly, it is disgraceful that it is only Judicial Watch, not costly congressional investigations that is getting out these key documents for the American people.”
In April 2014, Judicial Watch forced the release of documents showing then-White House Deputy Strategic Communications Adviser Ben Rhodes and other Obama administration public relations officials attempting to orchestrate a campaign to “reinforce” President Obama and to portray the Benghazi consulate terrorist attack as being “rooted in an Internet video, and not a failure of policy.” Other documents showed that State Department officials initially described the incident as an “attack” and a possible kidnap attempt. Judicial Watch’s release of the Rhodes email, which had been withheld by the Obama administration from Congress, caused the House of Representatives to approve the Select Committee on Benghazi, which is now led by Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC).