The truth about the deadly terrorist attack on the U.S. Mission in Benghazi is trickling out slowly. The latest development is found in a classified cable obtained by Fox News that reveals the compound in Libya was unprepared to withstand a “coordinated attack” due to lack of security and other issues.
Appearing on Fox News with Greta Van Susteren on Thursday, Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) revealed two more interesting pieces of the Benghazi puzzle. First, that U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens rang Deputy Chief of Mission Gregory Hicks on Sept. 11 to tell him the consulate was under attack.
“He said that shortly after 9:40 p.m. what happened is his phone rang and he didn’t recognize the number so he didn’t answer it. And then it rang again and again he didn’t answer it because he didn’t recognize the number. But then given the persistence, he did answer it. It was Ambassador Stevens and Ambassador Stevens was saying we’re under attack,” Chaffetz said.
“Now I can’t say he told me specifically that he was asking for help but that’s kind of what I read into it. He hung up the phone, he immediately called into Washington DC to trigger all the mechanisms that need to be put on, and then he wasn’t able to contact him. And there were hours and hours where we didn’t know where our ambassador was.”
Watch the clip via Fox News (Chaffetz segment begins at around 6:20):
The second important fact that Chaffetz provided involved Gen. Carter Ham, former head of U.S. Africa command. The Utah congressman says Ham told him “personally” that “he did not get a directive from the White House, from the president of the United States to engage in the fire fight to help protect those people.”
“Mr. President, you can’t have it both ways,” Chaffetz added. “You can’t say that you are doing everything you can to protect the people in Benghazi when we are under attack — a fire fight that starts at 9:40 at night and goes to the wee hours of the morning — and say you did everything when the military did not engage.”
Ham has since been relieved of duty, though the Pentagon says it has nothing to do with the Benghazi attack.