Respected journalist and adventurer Robert Young Pelton says the Benghazi consulate killings were due to extraordinarily lax security mandated by the State Department. I know Pelton’s reputation. He doesn’t make stuff up and has extensive on-the-ground experience dealing with private military companies and training those who guard embassy staff and other important people in hostile areas. His long article is required reading, in my estimation, and is comprehensive and well-documented..
Diplomatic security in the era of Blackwater and Little Bird helicopters has been criticized for being overly aggressive, reactive and high profile. But judged on performance, it was exceedingly effective and based on years of lessons learned. Understandably the Secretary of State would enforce her well-publicized resistance to hiring Tier One private security, but it appears that security in Libya had been degraded to the level of a suburban shopping mall. A handful of locally hired guards with high desertion rates and abysmal training were all that stood between trained attackers and the mission.
Such is the nature of foreign security under Secretary of State Clinton. Which is to say that the State Department opted for a smaller security footprint—no armed guards, no Blackwater-type guards locked and loaded on every corner—that would, hopefully, be less of an offense to locals, especially locals in a country where the U.S had just supported the toppling of a dictator.
Pelton’s article was published at blackwaterusa. Yes, that Blackwater. He asked their former CEO about the Benghazi consulate killings.
So the big question is who will take the fall for the poorly guarded embassy and the deaths of four Americans working in service to their country?
“It’s the government,” Prince said, “nobody gets fired.”