Report: U.S. Rescue Team Was on Its Way to Benghazi, But Was Turned Back
The evidence is overwhelming that the United States had several rescue teams ready to go during the 2012 Benghazi attacks, but someone -- possibly the president himself -- prevented them from acting. So said Emmy Award-winning journalist Sharyl Attkisson to talk show host Steve Malzberg in an interview on Wednesday.
This week on her show, "Full Measure," Attkisson looked into the aborted rescue mission in an in-depth two-part report, "Rescue Interrupted," which you can watch here and here. She spoke with a Green Beret commander who told her that there were actually Special Forces on their way to Benghazi who were turned back.
Col. Andrew Wood had once commanded a Special Forces anti-terrorism team protecting Ambassador Chis Stevens and other diplomats in Libya. In October of 2012, Woods told Congress that one month before the attacks in Benghazi, his team had been removed from Libya by the Obama administration, despite the numerous warnings of impending terrorist attacks. Wood told Attkisson that Special Forces (the ones mentioned in the "spinning up" email from Jeremy Bash) were on their way to Benghazi, but were ordered to turn back.
"Those individuals I know loaded aircraft and got on their way to Benghazi to respond to that incident. They were not allowed to cross the border as per protocol until they got approval from the commander in chief," Wood explained. "That authority has to come from him or they're not allowed to enter the country."
Attkisson told Malzberg, "This is something that the president and the White House has steadfastly denied, but there's now what I would call an overwhelming body of evidence that leads us to believe that somebody stopped a number of teams and potential rescuers from entering Libya or going to Benghazi to help while those attacks were underway."
"They could have gotten there before the last two Americans died," Attkisson noted. "Those attacks went on for eight hours."
The email from Jeremy Bash to Jacob Sullivan, deputy chief of staff to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, came at 7:19 pm Washington time.
Attkisson notes in Part One of "Rescue Interrupted" that "the White House has refused to detail the involvement of President Obama -- the Commander-in-Chief -- while Americans were under attack on foreign soil."