The Mitt Romney presidential campaign and the CIA Mormon Mafia have embarrassing questions to answer about the September 11 deaths of US Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stephens and three members of his staff in Benghazi, Libya, new information confirms.
Responsibility for what happened in Benghazi on September 11 has now emerged as a favorite issue of Republicans and Romney supporters, who are accusing the Obama administration of failing to provide sufficient security for the Benghazi consulate. Republicans are also eager to use the Benghazi killings to attack Obama’s claim that the alleged death of Osama bin Laden in the spring of 2011 marked the definitive defeat of al-Qaeda. This issue was aggressively cited by Republican candidate Paul Ryan in his vice presidential debate with incumbent Democrat Joe Biden. Biden asserted that the US intelligence community had told the White House that the Benghazi attack was a protest demonstration against an Islamophobic film which had turned violent, rather than a militarily planned terrorist attack. This was the analysis repeatedly offered by US Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice in the days after September 11. Biden also stated that the White House was not aware of requests for anti-terror reinforcements by US consular officials in Benghazi.
So far, the most important information about the Benghazi events has been ignored in the controversy between Republicans and Democrats.
As the London Daily Mail reported on September 19, 2012, all signs suggest that the attack on the US Consulate in Benghazi and the murder of Ambassador Stevens were carried out by forces under the command of Sufyan Ben Qumu (or Kumu), a notorious terrorist leader of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, an affiliate of al-Qaeda. Qumu, who once worked as Bin Laden’s chauffeur, is a native of Derna, Libya, the city which US Army files suggest has produced more violent terrorists per capita than any other in the world. The US government knows everything about Qumu, who spent about five years as a prisoner in detention at Guant?namo Bay, Cuba. Qumu was then sent back to Libya in September 2007, where he was set free by Gaddafi in an amnesty in 2010. Qumu currently heads the Ansar al-Sharia brigade, also an al-Qaeda affiliate.
Clearly, the likely way somebody like Qumu could be released from Guant?namo would be if he had become a double agent working for the CIA in the overthrow of Qaddafi. We therefore have a situation in which a reputed CIA asset has carried out the assassination of the US ambassador. The existence of a Mormon Mafia within the CIA interested in staging an October surprise to help Romney get elected may provide the key to explaining these phenomena.
CIA Director Petraeus Pushed Demo Gone Violent Theory
One authoritative source for the theory that the Benghazi attack was a protest demonstration gone violent was none other than CIA Director General David Petraeus, a figure who feels no special loyalty to Obama. Petraeus unites Pentagon and CIA networks. According to a Fox News story dated September 27, “a congressional source told Fox News that CIA Director David Petraeus, during a briefing with members of the House Intelligence Committee three days after the attack, also espoused the view that Benghazi was an out-of-control demonstration prompted by the YouTube video. According to the source, this was ‘shocking’ to some members who were present and saw the same intelligence pointing towards a terrorist attack.” Petraeus is notoriously the darling of neocon networks who are now actively supporting Romney. Is Petraeus using his current position to help Romney against Obama? Is Petraeus now actively allied with the Mormon Mafia inside his own agency?
Disturbing questions about the role of the CIA in Benghazi were raised during an October 10 hearing of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee chaired by partisan Republican Congressman Darrell Issa. Issa, reputedly the richest man on Capitol Hill, sought to use the hearing to blame the Benghazi deaths on the Obama White House. Issa was assisted by Congressman Jason Chaffetz of Utah, a spokesman for the Romney presidential campaign, and like Romney a leading member of the tightly-knit and sectarian Mormon Church of Latter-day Saints. Issa introduced Chaffetz as the congressman who had started the entire investigation of Benghazi; Chaffetz had just returned from a short fact finding visit in Benghazi along with other Republicans, but no Democrats.
Issa’s leadoff witness was Special Forces Lt. Col. Andrew Wood of the Utah National Guard, who had actively sought to be heard as a witness. Wood had been the top security official for the Benghazi consulate for several months before the assassinations. Coming as he does from Utah, a state largely dominated by the Latter-day Saints, we may safely assume that Lt. Col. Wood is either a member or ally of the Mormon Church. Lt. Col. Wood testified that he had asked the State Department in Washington for additional security personnel, but never received the requested reinforcements. But other witnesses pointed out that Wood’s application had been incomplete, since he never substantiated his request with descriptions of a specific threat, thus making it difficult to grant.
A revealing incident occurred during the testimony of Charlene Lamb, the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Programs in the Diplomatic Security Bureau of the State Department. Secretary Lamb, basically a policewoman, sought to describe the Benghazi events with the help of a satellite photo showing the US facilities in Benghazi. But Congressman Chaffetz immediately became agitated, calling out “Point of order! Point of order!” Chaffetz wanted the photo hidden away, and fast. “We’re getting into classified issues that deal with sources and methods that would be totally inappropriate in an open forum such as this,” Chaffetz explained. Secretary Lamb reply at the photo was “entirely unclassified,” and in fact came from a commercial satellite.
But the Romney backer Chaffetz was implacable. “I totally object to the use of that photo. I was told specifically while I was in Libya I could not and should not ever talk about what you’re showing here today,” Chaffetz asserted. Chairman Issa said that the photo could remain on display, and Secretary Lamb completed her prepared testimony. But while she spoke, various aides busily whispered in Issa’s ear. By the time Secretary Lamb had finished, Issa ordered that the photo be taken down. “In this hearing room, we’re not going to point out details of what may still in fact be a facility of the United States Government or more facilities,” Issa argued.
Secret CIA Base in Benghazi Revealed
From subsequent references to an “other government agency” or “other government entity,” it became clear that the additional building shown on the photo was in fact a CIA base, the home of a CIA “rapid response force” with between seven and 12 members. This force was comparable to the Site Security Team which Lt. Col. Wood said he had requested in vain. It emerged from the hearings that these CIA personnel were not under State Department command. As Dana Milbank noted on October 11 in the Washington Post, “the victims may have been let down not by the State Department but by the CIA.” So where had this considerable CIA force been during the attack on the consulate? Why had the CIA failed to defend the American Ambassador’s life? Could the CIA Mormon Mafia somehow have been responsible for this failure? Was this why the Mormon loyalist Chaffetz was so anxious to hide the evidence?
The existence of the CIA base had been first suggested by a September 23 New York Times article by Eric Schmitt, Helene Cooper, and Michael S. Schmidt, which reported that more than two dozen American personnel had been evacuated from Benghazi on September 11, including “about a dozen CIA operatives and contractors, who played a crucial role in conducting surveillance and collecting information on an array of armed militant groups in and around the city.” It might be more accurate to say that the CIA was providing liaison with armed groups in the infamous Benghazi-Derna-Tobruk or Cyrenaica terrorist corridor, terrorists which NATO was widely known to have been deploying into Syria through Turkey. But the question remained: why had the CIA forces not helped to defend the consulate when it came under attack? Was it to help manufacture an incident which Romney could use to defeat Obama?
On October 11, in his article entitled “Security Lapses Indeed,” Dana Milbank revealed in the Washington Post that his paper and the New York Times had been asked by the Obama administration not to reveal details about the CIA’s Benghazi base.
The late Ambassador Stevens had reportedly been in close contact with the militias of the Benghazi-Derna-Tobruk corridor since no later than 2008, when he had served as Vice Consul in Benghazi. His last visitor on September 11 was a Turkish diplomat who departed from the consulate at about 8:30 p.m. Was the subject of this meeting the deployment of more jihadis from Cyrenaica through Turkey into Syria? According to leveymg writing in the Daily Kos of September 14, “Stevens believed that he was safe because he routinely worked with Libyan militant groups in the area.” But suddenly, something changed.
Leveymg of the Daily Kos argues that working closely with Ambassador Stevens starting in March-April 2011 was evidently former CIA employee James F. Smith, a former director of the infamous Blackwater private military firm who became the boss of SCG International, a private security firm, according to a March 19, 2012 report by Yazan al-Saadi in the English edition of Al-Akhbar of Beirut based on alleged e-mails from the private intelligence firm Stratfor which that paper had obtained. These e-mails include a report that, after the death of Col. Gaddafi, Smith had been sent by the US government to contact Syrian opposition figures in Turkey to determine “how they can help in regime change.”
According to one of the supposed Stratfor e-mails obtained by Al-Akhbar, “Source [presumably James F. Smith] and Dr. Walid Phares are getting air cover [political support] from [Republican North Carolina] Congresswoman Myrick to engage Syrian opposition in Turkey (non-MB and non-Qatari) on a fact finding mission for Congress. The true mission is how they can help in regime change.” Rep. Sue Myrick, an Islamophobic reactionary, is a member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. She has announced her retirement.
Dr. Walid Phares has been named as a member of the Islamophobia network in Fear, Inc., a 2011 report issued by the Center for American Progress. This Islamophobia network, of which the best known figure is the neocon John Bolton, Romney’s chief foreign policy adviser and probable secretary of state in a Romney administration, is implicated in the production of the anti-Muslim film which set off the protests in two dozen countries on and after September 11, 2012.
Walid Phares is a Lebanese Christian who was named on October 20, 2011 as Special Advisor to Mitt Romney and co-chairman of Romney’s Middle East Advisory Group. According to Mother Jones, Phares in the 1980s was a “close adviser to Samir Geagea, a Lebanese warlord.” Phares’ appointment as a Romney advisor was also criticized by The Daily Beast, Politico, Salon, and The New Republic. Serwer reports that Phares had told a third party that “Romney had promised Phares a high-ranking White House job helping craft US policy in the Middle East should the ex-governor win in 2012.”
Ironically, when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appeared to defend her policy at a conference on the Maghreb region held at the Center for Strategic and International Relations on October 12, she was introduced by the Mormon General Brent Scowcroft, a former National Security Council chief and close associate of Henry Kissinger, who is a grey eminence of the Mormon Mafia. Of course, if security was lacking in Benghazi, Mrs. Clinton should be held responsible. She is in any case about to resign.