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  • Originally posted by Gun Grape View Post
    What was the area of responsibility for the react force? Planning at the Warplan Orange level was most likely in the system. ie, this is the consulate building, there are X# of possible landing zones for Y type of helos in the area.

    But the info needed to actually conduct a reinforcement/rescue operation would not be there. Mission orders must be developed based on the situation at the time of the order.
    GG:

    I should have been clearer. Do we know if contingency plans for a rescue already existed?

    I absolutely agree; planning a mission takes time, and if, as in this case, there were no plans on the shelf, probably not enough time was available to save the consulate personnel.

    At this point I am more interested in what the thinking was at the top. The powers that be are saying that launching a mission was not possible under the circumstances, lack of on-the-ground intel, etc. I can accept that. But were there other
    reasons for not going in? If a mission was feasible at the time, would they have ordered it? Did they order a stand-down?

    It's really too late to second guess whether a mission would have succeeded, but not too late to know the real reason why none was tried. Was it really lack of time or really political?

    Read the timeline of the attack provided by the State dept and see what you think.

    Background Briefing on Libya
    To be Truly ignorant, Man requires an Education - Plato

    Comment


    • WaPo put up a more detailed timeline of the attack today, below. i also bolded a discrepancy from earlier.

      also, from the LA times:

      Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta learned of the attack shortly after it began, about 4:30 p.m Eastern time, Defense officials said, and discussed it in a previously scheduled meeting with the president. Obama ordered him to pursue whatever options were feasible, a Defense official said.

      Panetta "ordered all appropriate forces to respond to the unfolding events in Benghazi, but the attack was over before those forces could be employed," Pentagon spokesman George Little said.

      Shortly after 11 p.m., a surveillance drone had arrived from elsewhere in Libya -- about an hour after it was requested, officials said. But the video feed was not seen by the president, contrary to some news reports. And the feed did not offer analysts a clear understanding of what was happening on the ground, officials said.
      ---

      The Bloody Hours In Benghazi
      By David Ignatius

      A detailed CIA timeline of the assault on U.S. facilities in Benghazi paints an anguishing picture of embattled Americans waiting for Libyan security forces who didn't come and courageous CIA officers who died on a rooftop without the heavy weapons they needed, trying to protect their colleagues below.

      It's a story of individual bravery, but also of a CIA misjudgment in relying on Libyan militias and a newly formed Libyan intelligence organization to keep Americans safe in Benghazi.

      While there were multiple errors that led to the final tragedy, there's no evidence that the White House or CIA leadership deliberately delayed or impeded rescue efforts.

      The CIA is now reviewing its security plans around the world to make sure the agency isn't relying on shaky local forces. This is a difficult task because the United States has vulnerable arrangements in dozens of places.

      The CIA timeline was described to me Thursday by a senior intelligence official. The narrative of events is dramatic and disturbing. Rather than try to parse each detail, let's look at a summary of the highlights. The times listed are Benghazi time on the night of Sept. 11 and the morning of Sept. 12:

      *9:40 p.m.: A senior State Department security officer at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi called the CIA base, at an annex about a mile away, and requested assistance: "The compound is under attack. People are moving through the gates." CIA officers at the base can hear the alarm, and a team immediately begins gathering weapons and preparing to leave.

      *10:04 p.m.: A six-person rescue squad from the agency's Global Response Staff (GRS) leaves in two vehicles. The team leader is a career CIA officer; the team includes a contractor named Tyrone Woods, who later died. During the previous 24-minute interval, the CIA base chief calls the February 17 Brigade, other militias and the Libyan intelligence service seeking vehicles with .50-caliber machine guns. Nobody responds. The team leader and the base chief agree at 10:04 that they can't wait any longer, and the squad heads for the consulate.

      The senior intelligence official said that he doesn't know whether Woods or any of the other team members agitated to go sooner but added that he wouldn't be surprised. "I want them to have a sense of urgency," he said.

      *10:10 p.m.: The rescue team reached a chaotic intersection a few blocks from the consulate. Militias gathered there have several .50-caliber machine guns, which the CIA team tries unsuccessfully to commandeer; three militiamen offer to help. The rescue party now includes 10 people: six GRS officers, a CIA translator and the three Libyan volunteers.

      *10:20 p.m.: A reconnaissance party of two GRS officers heads to the consulate; at 10:25, three more GRS officers enter the main gate and begin engaging the attackers. The firefight lasts about 15 minutes.

      *10:40 p.m.: Members of the CIA team enter the burning inferno of "Villa C," where Ambassador Christopher Stevens is believed to be hiding. CIA officers try numerous times to reach the "safe room" but are driven back by the intense smoke and fire. Small-arms fire continues from the Libyan attackers.

      *11:11 p.m.: An unarmed military Predator drone arrives over the compound to provide aerial reconnaissance. The drone had been diverted from a mission over Darnah, about 90 minutes away. But without weapons, it can't help much.

      *11:15 p.m.: The CIA team puts a group of State Department officers into a vehicle and sends it to the agency base; at 11:30, the CIA officers depart under fire and reach the annex six minutes later.

      *11:56 p.m.: CIA officers at the annex are attacked by a rocket-propelled grenade and small arms. Sporadic attacks continue for about another hour. The attacks stop at 1:01 a.m., and some assume the fight is over.

      *1:15 a.m.: CIA reinforcements arrive on a 45-minute flight from Tripoli in a plane they've hastily chartered. The Tripoli team includes four GRS security officers, a CIA case officer and two U.S. military personnel on loan to the agency. They don't leave the Benghazi airport until 4:30 a.m. The delay is caused by negotiations with Libyan authorities over permission to leave the airport; obtaining vehicles; and the need to frame a clear mission plan. The first idea is to go to a Benghazi hospital to recover Stevens, who they rightly suspect is already dead. (Also killed was a State Department communication specialist.) But the hospital is surrounded by the al-Qaeda-linked Ansar al-Sharia militia that mounted the consulate attack.

      *5:04 a.m.: The team from Tripoli arrives at the CIA base. Glen Doherty, one of the GRS men from Tripoli, goes to the roof and joins Woods in firing positions.

      *5:15 a.m.: A new Libyan assault begins, this time with mortars. Two rounds miss and the next three hit the roof. The rooftop defenders never "laser the mortars," as has been reported. They don't know the weapons are in place until the indirect fire begins, nor are the mortars observed by the drone overhead. The defenders have focused their laser sights earlier on several Libyan attackers, as warnings not to fire. At 5:26 the attack is over. Woods and Doherty are dead and two others are wounded.

      *6 a.m.: Libyan forces from the military intelligence service finally arrive, now with 50 vehicles. They escort the Americans to the airport. A first group of 18, including two wounded, depart at 7 a.m. A second group of 12, plus the four dead, leave at 10 a.m. for Tripoli and then the long flight back to America.
      There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

      Comment


      • It seems to me we are over-focusing on the attack scenario. The men in country performed the best they could under the circumstances.

        What followed is the 'mystery". Why did the White House characterize the attack as a protest gone bad when they had all this information. Of course, the information hadn't all been sorted out. That's even more reason to question ANY attempt to characterize the attack so soon after it happened. Politics, anyone?
        To be Truly ignorant, Man requires an Education - Plato

        Comment


        • Originally posted by JAD_333 View Post
          It seems to me we are over-focusing on the attack scenario. The men in country performed the best they could under the circumstances.

          What followed is the 'mystery". Why did the White House characterize the attack as a protest gone bad when they had all this information. Of course, the information hadn't all been sorted out. That's even more reason to question ANY attempt to characterize the attack so soon after it happened. Politics, anyone?
          And stupid arrogance.

          -dale

          Comment


          • May I ask a question? Obama is a half-African, why he don't make policy pay attentions to Africa continent? And provide more assistance to African people? Instead of his government make a policy call "Ruturn Asia". According to some medias claim: "this policy are aimed at rise of China."


            Our Aisan people( especially people of East Asia) business don't need USA people pay more attentions,we can take care of ourselevs, please!

            USA people should help more people who are suffering the civil war and hungry people in Africa. Or other suffering people in the world,please!

            Comment


            • :slap:
              No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

              To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

              Comment


              • Originally posted by udake View Post
                May I ask a question? Obama is a half-African, why he don't make policy pay attentions to Africa continent? And provide more assistance to African people? Instead of his government make a policy call "Ruturn Asia". According to some medias claim: "this policy are aimed at rise of China."


                Our Aisan people( especially people of East Asia) business don't need USA people pay more attentions,we can take care of ourselevs, please!

                USA people should help more people who are suffering the civil war and hungry people in Africa. Or other suffering people in the world,please!

                1. Grammar check! Unless you are actually 'Aisan'

                2. You asked this question in the rise of China thread, and got your answer there.

                Comment


                • From Ignatius' timeline, is the CIA therefore responsible for the defense and security of Embassies and consulates?
                  In the realm of spirit, seek clarity; in the material world, seek utility.

                  Leibniz

                  Comment


                  • Was wondering the same.

                    If USMC were doing the intelligence and CIA the security...
                    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

                    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by udake View Post
                      May I ask a question? Obama is a half-African, why he don't make policy pay attentions to Africa continent? And provide more assistance to African people? Instead of his government make a policy call "Ruturn Asia". According to some medias claim: "this policy are aimed at rise of China."


                      Our Aisan people( especially people of East Asia) business don't need USA people pay more attentions,we can take care of ourselevs, please!

                      USA people should help more people who are suffering the civil war and hungry people in Africa. Or other suffering people in the world,please!
                      Obama's not president of Africa, he's president of the United States.

                      And we've done more to help the suffering people in the world than any other country on the planet already, thank you very much and you're welcome.

                      -dale

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by Parihaka View Post
                        From Ignatius' timeline, is the CIA therefore responsible for the defense and security of Embassies and consulates?
                        No, the GRS is responsible for protecting their assets.

                        But they were in country. So they responded.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by JAD_333 View Post
                          GG:

                          I should have been clearer. Do we know if contingency plans for a rescue already existed?

                          I absolutely agree; planning a mission takes time, and if, as in this case, there were no plans on the shelf, probably not enough time was available to save the consulate personnel.

                          At this point I am more interested in what the thinking was at the top. The powers that be are saying that launching a mission was not possible under the circumstances, lack of on-the-ground intel, etc. I can accept that. But were there other
                          reasons for not going in? If a mission was feasible at the time, would they have ordered it? Did they order a stand-down?

                          It's really too late to second guess whether a mission would have succeeded, but not too late to know the real reason why none was tried. Was it really lack of time or really political?

                          Read the timeline of the attack provided by the State dept and see what you think.

                          Background Briefing on Libya
                          I don't think there was a stand down order.

                          But as the Col stated, there wasn't enough time.

                          I used the O'Grady mission where there was plenty of preplanning time.

                          Here is another example with the react force in place.

                          The Battle of Mogadishu. Birds get shot down at 1620. The relief force got to the first crash site around 0200 the next morning. Everyone was extracted by 0630.

                          That's 10 hours for a relief/response force to be on site from their base in the same city.

                          Except for the 2 response teams that did reinforce the Consulate, there was never time to bring in forces from outside the country.

                          That is why we, as do all countries, rely on host country support to defend our embassy's.

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by Gun Grape View Post
                            That is why we, as do all countries, rely on host country support to defend our embassy's.
                            Not always.

                            I remember that back in 1999, due to the campaign against Yugoslavia, angry mob entered US Embassy and burned the flag. In a week or so, the place was like a fortress, with several nests, USMC stationed and what not (they erected high walls in few days).

                            IMHO, the risk in Libya was way higher.
                            No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

                            To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

                            Comment


                            • Seems to me the real value of any investigation lies in the aftermath rather than the lead-up or the immediate reality of that evening. As a layman I don't know if there was a ready-action force ready to be shot into the compound in converted Tomahawks or if 100 SOCOM ninjas were actually there saving secret Dilithium plans and the last of the really great Whangdoodles while Ambassador Stevens shooed them away and acted as a decoy.

                              I'll never know that - that's for the pros to know and speculate about. BUT.

                              I am very interested in what President Obama Fett with his belt-dangled bin Laden scalp was doing that night and the next day, and the next days after that. From what I know so far, he lied and directed his staff to lie for days, and did it for very low and very petty reasons.

                              That's the only piece I'm interested in.

                              -dale

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by dalem View Post
                                Seems to me the real value of any investigation lies in the aftermath rather than the lead-up or the immediate reality of that evening. As a layman I don't know if there was a ready-action force ready to be shot into the compound in converted Tomahawks or if 100 SOCOM ninjas were actually there saving secret Dilithium plans and the last of the really great Whangdoodles while Ambassador Stevens shooed them away and acted as a decoy.

                                I'll never know that - that's for the pros to know and speculate about. BUT.

                                I am very interested in what President Obama Fett with his belt-dangled bin Laden scalp was doing that night and the next day, and the next days after that. From what I know so far, he lied and directed his staff to lie for days, and did it for very low and very petty reasons.

                                That's the only piece I'm interested in.

                                -dale

                                Good continue to be interested in a non story and let it consume all of your attention while the rest of the world passes you by.

                                This is like one of those tin foil conspiracies where Bush knew about 9/11 attacks and did nothing about them blah blah blah.

                                Comment

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