It’s important to note that the last two Americans to die in the terrorist attack on our Benghazi consulate weren’t killed until several hours after the attack started.  Gary Bernsten, retired CIA officer, had this on our real-time response to the attack (i.e., while our State Department officials were listening to the attack-in-progress*) and this administration’s decision to take no meaningful response during the several hours it was going in:

You find a way to make this happen.  There isn’t a plan for every single engagement.  Sometimes you have to be able to make adjustments.  They made zero adjustments; they just stood and they watched, and our people died.

It’s also sometimes necessary to act entirely ad hoc.  But it takes a measure of courage and a willingness to run risks and a willingness to step into the unknown to do these things.


*This is from the State Department brief on 9 Oct:

I neglected to mention from the top that that agent from the top of this incident, or the very beginning of this incident, has been on the phone. He had called the quick reaction security team, he had called the Libyan authorities, he had called the Embassy in Tripoli, and he had called Washington. He had them all going to ask for help. And he remained in the TOC.

And from the Chicago Sun-Times:

We now know that the State Department had real-time communications with Benghazi during the attack….

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