………………….NOTE: hearing begins at 27:08 mark of video
“SAY IT TO MY FACE; YOU ARE CALLING A RANGER A SEAL AND THREE MARINES LIARS; THE WORDS STAND DOWN WERE GIVEN”
Kris Paronto and Mark Geist, two security officers who were in Benghazi on the night of the September 11, 2012 terrorist attacks, challenged liberal Democrats to come on television and tell them to their face that they were liars.
The two American heroes and whistle-blowers joined Sean Hannity last night to discuss their book and allegations by prominent Democrats that they were lying. Geist said,
“I would like to invite Mr. Schiff to a debate… We can talk about it… He wants to see and say that to my face. We can talk about it, and talk about everything.”
Via I’m 41:
CHAIRMAN GOWDY’S OPENING STATEMENT
REP. JIM JORDAN QUESTIONS SECURITY EXPERT TODD KEIL
What are the odds the MSM reports on Sharyl Attkisson’s bombshell report?
…According to former Deputy Assistant Secretary Raymond Maxwell, the after-hours session took place over a weekend in a basement operations-type center at State Department headquarters in Washington, D.C. This is the first time Maxwell has publicly come forward with the story.
At the time, Maxwell was a leader in the State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs (NEA), which was charged with collecting emails and documents relevant to the Benghazi probe. […]
Maxwell says the weekend document session was held in the basement of the State Department’s Foggy Bottom headquarters in a room underneath the “jogger’s entrance.” He describes it as a large space, outfitted with computers and big screen monitors, intended for emergency planning, and with small offices on the periphery.
When he arrived, Maxwell says he observed boxes and stacks of documents. He says a State Department office director, whom Maxwell described as close to Clinton’s top advisers, was there. Though the office director technically worked for him, Maxwell says he wasn’t consulted about her weekend assignment.
“She told me, ‘Ray, we are to go through these stacks and pull out anything that might put anybody in the [Near Eastern Affairs] front office or the seventh floor in a bad light,’” says Maxwell. He says “seventh floor” was State Department shorthand for then-Secretary of State Clinton and her principal advisors.
“I asked her, ‘But isn’t that unethical?’ She responded, ‘Ray, those are our orders.’”
Libyans suspected of bombing and vandalizing the U.S. consulate in Benghazi prior to the deadly attack that killed U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens had been hired there as security guards by a British contractor, according to a report released June 13 by the State Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG)
“One guard who had been recently fired and another guard on the company’s payroll were suspected of throwing a homemade bomb into the U.S. compound 6 months before the attacks,” according to the OIG report.
“In addition, according to the United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, the Temporary Mission Facility in Benghazi had been vandalized and attacked in the months prior to the September 2012 attacks by some of the same guards who were there to protect it,” the report stated.
The Libyan guards were hired after “a casual recruiting and screening process” and received “minimal training,” according to a media reported cited in the audit of embassy security procedures in six countries.
The audit also found a criminal with “multiple false identities” working at a U.S. embassy due to limited oversight in the process required for vetting locals hired as security guards under the department’s $556 million Local Guard Program (LPG).
The guard “admitted to having a criminal history, which included two arrests and three cases of employing false identities to gain employment with local security contractors,” the OIG report stated.
A review of the guard’s personnel file, which “contained no local police background check,” also revealed ”an invalid current address, no explanation for travel outside of [redacted], incomplete details on previous work experience, false statements on having used other names, and criminal history.”
At the six embassies audited, whose locations were all redacted from the report, the OIG found “severe deficiencies” in the vetting process for embassy security guards.
In fact, none of the security contractors fully performed all of the vetting required under their contracts despite the fact that there were at least 272 significant attacks against U.S. diplomatic facilities and personnel between 1998 and 2012, placing “embassies and personnel at risk,” the report said.
A typical vetting includes a “police check covering criminal and/or subversive activities, a credit check, proof of successful previous employment with supervisor recommendations, and a personal residence check.” But out of a sample of 48 files examined by the OIG, “19 (40 percent) did not have police checks.”
In some cases, vetting requirements were not completed during the transition time between contractors until more than two years after the security guards had been placed on duty, the report noted. Even basic information such as “addresses and employment were missing from the local guard personnel files.”
The results of background checks must be cleared by a regional security officer (RSO) before any local guards can begin work at an embassy.
However, the OIG found that the RSOs, who are responsible for final approval of foreign nationals hired as embassy security guards, “frequently could not demonstrate that they had reviewed and approved the local guards employed to protect their posts.”
In one instance, “the RSO could not produce an accurate listing of all the local guards who worked at the embassy, and the project manager for the security contractor received an embassy badge without undergoing a background investigation or RSO approval.”
In some cases, local privacy laws prevented security contractors from fulfillling all of the required vetting. Other obstacles in less developed countries included lack of credit reporting services or the availability of official records such as birth certificates, the report stated.
The Office of Inspector General urged that these obstacles be taken into account in the vetting requirements so that contractors could still perform thorough checks of all hirees.
“Without modifying the Local Guard Program contract to reflect local conditions and limitations,” the report said, “the Department cannot hold the security contractor accountable for adhering to all the vetting requirements contained in.”
The inspector general also found that the security contractor at one embassy invoiced $1.48 million of monthly $100 supplemental wages between 2010 and 2013 that were never paid to the local guards.
On average, State Dept. contractors failed to pay $298,000, or between 15 and 25 percent of the full supplemental wages due to local security guards since 2010, according to the OIG. The State Department has since clarified how the supplemental wages should be distributed, and the Bureau of Administration is in the process of deciding the total amount of monies owed.
The OIG made a number of recommendations to the embassies to beef up their security procedures, many of which have already been completed. But other embassies are still in the process of demonstrating full compliance, the report noted.
CNSNews.com contacted the State Department multiple times for comment but did not receive a response.
Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Thomas McInerney says he believes the evidence will show that President Obama and top administration officials were guilty of a “dereliction of duty” both during and after the deadly attack in Benghazi, Libya that cost the lives of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans.
“Verification of what the National Command Authority knew and when they knew it is extremely important as it will show, I believe, that there was dereliction of duty by the President, the Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Secretary of State, and the CIA Director,” Lt. Gen. McInerney said at a joint conference with military and legal experts held by the Heritage Foundation and the Benghazi Accountability Coalition on Monday.
“That is a very serious charge. That is a very serious charge, and it was done in violation of the law of the United States,” declared Gen. McInerney, who served as an assistant vice chief of staff in the Air Force’s Washington headquarters, and was part of a group calling for a select committee to investigate the events in Benghazi back in March.
“It absolutely boggles my mind that we did not have pre-positioned forces in that area,” McInerney said, adding that he knows the region well because he was a commander there when the U.S. attacked Libya in April 1986.
“We didn’t do these things. That points to dereliction of duty,” he said.
After Amb. Stevens notified the State Department that the consulate in Benghazi was under attack, “we should have launched F-16s and tankers and they could have been airborne in two hours… But nothing was done,” McInerney said.
“The Foreign Emergency Support Team, can you believe this, was up in Croatia. What was it doing in Croatia? Were we having riots in Croatia? So again, dereliction of duty.”
Another military panelist at the conference said that greater issues are at stake than the loss of American lives.
“This whole thing is not just about the lives of four people,” asserted retired Army Lt. Gen. William “Jerry” Boykin. “This is about the character of America. This is about who we are as a nation. This about the violation of our most fundamental ethos in this nation… We don’t leave people behind.”
The conference was held in Washington as the House Select Committee on Benghazi begins its probe of the events surrounding the deadly Sept. 12, 2012 assault.
The investigation is also expected to take a new turn with the American military’s capture of Ahmed Abu Khattala Sunday. Abu Khattala, a member of the Ansar al-Sharia militia group, is one of the suspected masterminds behind the Benghazi terrorist attacks.
President Barack Obama stated in a Tuesday press release that “with this operation, the United States has once again demonstrated that we will do whatever it takes to see that justice is done when people harm Americans. We will continue our efforts to bring to justice those who were responsible for the Benghazi attacks.”
Demands for accountability first began after terrorists stormed the diplomatic consulate in Benghazi, which then-U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice blamed on a “spontaneous protest” allegedly motivated by an anti-Islamic video.
After multiple congressional hearings, the Senate Intelligence Committee declassified a report in January showing that “the attacks were preventable, based on extensive intelligence reporting on the terrorist activity in Libya… and given the known security shortfalls at the U.S. Mission.”
On May 8, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) created the Select Committee on Benghazi after Judicial Watch, a conservative watchdog group, released State Department documents claiming that the attack was “rooted in an Internet video, and not a failure of policy.”
But not everyone in Washington welcomed the renewed attempt to find out what really happened in Benghazi.
“I think it’s a hunting mission for a lynch mob,” Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) told CNN on May 18. “They [questions about Benghazi] were certainly answered to the satisfaction of the Senate Intelligence Committee.”
In a June 9 interview with ABC’s Diane Sawyer, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, “What I do not appreciate is politicizing this at the expense of four dead Americans… I do not believe our great country should be playing minor league ball. We ought to be in the majors,” and calling the Select Committee’s work “a diversion from the hard work that the Congress should be doing about the problems facing our country and the world.”