Senate Benghazi Report: "Attacks Were Preventable"

Senate Benghazi Report: "Attacks Were Preventable"

Senate Benghazi Report: "Attacks Were Preventable"

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Jan. 15 2014 11:07 AM

Senate Benghazi Report: "Attacks Were Preventable"

Jennifer Brandt holds signs during a 'Call to Action' rally held by various conservative organizations on the grounds of the U.S. Capitol, marking the one year anniversary of the attacks on the U.S. compound in Benghazi September 11, 2013 in Washington, D.C.

Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images

The Senate Intelligence Committee released it's long-delayed report on Benghazi this morning. You can wade through the whole thing here if you'd like, but here's how the panel summed up their findings in a statement: "The attacks were preventable, based on extensive intelligence reporting on the terrorist activity in Libya—to include prior threats and attacks against Western targets—and given the known security shortfalls at the U.S. Mission."

Josh Voorhees Josh Voorhees

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City.

The panel blamed both American diplomats and the C.I.A. for poor communication and lax security in the leadup to the attacks that left Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans dead. That stinging conclusion aside, the bipartisan report largely covers familiar ground and, as the Washington Post points out, sheds little if any light on the issue most likely to appear in Comment sections around the Web—whether or not the Obama administration went out of its way to play down the terror angle.


The report does, however, paint a rather grim picture of the situation on the ground in Libya in terms of bringing those responsible for the attack to justice:

The Libyan Government has not shown the political incentive or will within its own country to seek out, arrest, and prosecute individuals believed to be associated with the attacks. Furthermore, the security environment in Benghazi remains extremely dangerous for individuals wishing to work with the U.S. Government on its investigation into the attacks. In testimony before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies, then-FBI Director Robert Mueller noted that as many as 15 individuals supporting the investigation or otherwise helpful to the United States have been killed in Benghazi since the attacks, underscoring the lawless and chaotic circumstances in eastern Libya. It is unclear whether their killings were related to the Benghazi investigation.

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This post has been updated.