Feinstein Unaware of CIA Annex Before Attack on U.S. Compound In Benghazi

download (61)Breitbart, by Kerry Picket:

Senator Dianne Feinstein (D – CA), Chairman of the Senate Select Intelligence Committee, told Breitbart News on Monday she did not know a CIA annex existed in Benghazi, Libya before the deadly September 2012 attack, which took the lives of four Americans, on the U.S. compound happened. Feinstein could also not confirm if other members of Congress knew about the CIA annex prior the attack.

Like Feinstein, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D – CA) is also a member of Congress’s Super 8, a group of top House and Senate leaders from both parties as well as intel committee chairmen and ranking members. Pelosi would not confirm nor deny to Breitbart News in September if she was briefed about the CIA annex before the attack on the U.S. facilities in Benghazi.

As reported previously by Breitbart News, section 503’s Presidential Approval and Reporting of Covert Actions in the 1947 National Security Act, mandates the President of the United States to inform Congress (in this case, Congress’s “Super 8“) of any covert CIA actions before authorizing the spy agency of any operations.

According to the recent Senate Select Intelligence Committee report on Benghazi, General Carter Ham, head of AFRICOM at the time of the attack, did not even know about the CIA annex in Benghazi when the deadly assault occurred.

Page 12 of the 85 page report reads:

We are puzzled as to how the military leadership expected to effectively respond and rescue Americans in the event of an emergency when it did not even know of the existence of one of the U.S. facilities.

Between pages 27 and 28:

With respect to the role of DoD and AFRICOM in emergency evacuations and rescue operations in Benghazi, the Committee received conflicting information on the extent of the awareness within DoD of the Benghazi Annex. According to U.S. AFRICOM, neither the command nor its Commander were aware of an annex in Benghazi, Libya.

However, it is the Committee’s understanding that other  DoD personnel were aware ofthe Benghazi Annex.

The Senate Select Intelligence Committee made no mention as to why the CIA annex was in Benghazi and Rep. Frank Wolf (R – VA), who is leading the call for a Select Committee to investigate the terror attack in Libya, asked why the report failed to address the matter.

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Wolf: So Just Who Knew The CIA Was In Benghazi?

Washington, D.C. (January 28, 2014) – Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA), author of legislation to create a Select Committee on Benghazi, today issued the following statement in response to comments by the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee that she was unaware of the CIA annex in Benghazi prior to the September 2012 attack:

Breitbart today reported that Senator Feinstein was unaware of the CIA annex in Benghazi before the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2012.  Her comments come on the heels of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence report on Benghazithat neither AFRICOM nor its commander knew the CIA was in Benghazi.
“If Congress didn’t know and AFRICOM and its commander didn’t know, then who did?  Was the annex created at the direction of the White House?  And if so, just who in the White House was coordinating the operation?
“It’s time to find out who stood up the annex and what was going on there.  It’s time for a Select Committee to break down jurisdictional barriers, hold public hearings and subpoena witnesses, including senior staff at the Defense Department, State Department, CIA and the White House.
“To put this in perspective, just yesterday New Jersey’s Senate and Assembly merged their separate inquiries into the George Washington Bridge controversy to form a unified select investigative committee.  In comparison, nearly 17 months after the Benghazi attacks, congressional efforts to investigate this terrorist attack – where four Americans died, including the first sitting ambassador in 40 years, and many other were wounded – are still fragmented and no one has been held accountable. Don’t we owe it to the families to do better?”
Wolf’s measure to establish a House Select Committee on Benghazi, H. Res. 36, presently has 181 cosponsors and has been endorsed by The American Legion, the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, the editorial page of The Wall Street Journal, respected national security leaders, like former Attorney General Mukasey, as well as some of the family members of the Benghazi victims.

The Senate’s serial contempt

600x300x1403649799.jpg.pagespeed.ic.3n5w0HA2iDBy Frank Gaffney:

Contempt of Congress used to be a serious offense.  Those who were accused of it faced prosecution, fines and perhaps worse.

These days, we are being subjected to contempt by Congress – more specifically, by the U.S. Senate.  As it prepares to ram down our throats a seriously defective “comprehensive immigration reform” bill thrown together by the so-called “Gang of Eight” led by Sen. Chuck Schumer, Democrat of New York, and several fellow travelers (notably, Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada and Republican Senators Bob Corker of Tennessee and John Hoeven of North Dakota), that contempt is palpable.  Let us count the ways:

O         Contempt for the national security: To be sure, what amounts to a Schumer-Corker-Hoevel amendment is ostensibly meant to fix our present border insecurity. A clue about its true purpose and character is that it has been put forward with the blessing of the Gang of Eight (rightly dubbed “the Gangsters) in the wake of their assiduous, and to date successful, efforts to prevent real fixes when they were offered in previous amendments.

In fact, as one of the most effective opponents of this legislation, rising Republican rock-star Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, noted at Red State on June 24th (http://www.redstate.com/ted_cruz/2013/06/23/latest-deal-from-the-senate-pass-amnesty-first-read-the-bill-later/), the “national security” amendment the Gangsters now profess to favor actually weakens existing border and interior security laws in a number of ways.   It also will, as a practical matter, end arrests and deportations necessary to enforce statutes relevant to illegal immigration.

At a minimum, the amendment persists in the fatal flaw inherent in the Gangsters’ initiative from the get-go:  It provides amnesty first, in the form of legal status as Registered Provisional Immigrants (RPIs), and national security second.  And there is no reason to believe that promises broken again and again in the past on the latter score will be honored this time.

O         Contempt for the Senate itself:  The order of the day is to jam through this legislation with limited opportunity to read the Gangsters’ bill, let alone seriously debate its contents.  The Schumer-Corker-Hoeven version is nearly 1200-pages long. And it amends the underlying Gang of Eight bill in myriad ways besides purportedly bracing up its now-acknowledged shortcomings on securing the border.

Two things seem to be operating behind these changes: 1) creating a false impression of that shortfalls in the underlying bill’s border and interior security provisions are being meaningfully addressed; and 2) buying swing senators’ votes by including a number of their favorite hobby-horses.

O         Contempt for the rule of law:  This legislation will reward with amnesty people who have, as their first act in the United States, broken the law to get here.  The Gang of Eight bill not only responds to such felonious conduct by giving individuals who may include terrorists, drug-dealers, human-traffickers, etc. the right to become U.S. citizens.  It also relieves them of any responsibility for having done what many did once they got here, namely broken a host of other laws, as well.

The end result will be not only to make citizens out of people we definitely do not want here.  The effect will also be to destroy the cardinal principle of equal justice under the law and, with it, our existing citizens’ confidence in their government.

O         Contempt for Republicans:  A number of GOP senators are evidently prepared to vote for this monstrosity on the grounds that, if they don’t, alienated Hispanic voters will condemn them permanently to the minority.  Actually, that will certainly be their fate if they do vote for it.

There is no persuasive evidence that Hispanic immigrants from cultures where government-dependency is the norm will align with a party that professes to revere individual responsibility and seeks to shrink the welfare state. Republicans simply can’t out-pander the Democrats in appealing to such a constituency.  What is evident, though, is that large numbers of conservatives and Republicans won’t vote for those who inflict this travesty upon our country.

O         Contempt for the American people:  The sponsors of the latest amendment clearly believe the public, their constituents included, are no wiser to the ways of Washington than when Obamacare was foisted upon us.  They contemptuously think we are too stupid to notice that once again we are being force-fed an obscenely voluminous bill, conjured up behind closed doors, with limited opportunities to read its contents before critical votes are taken and the promise that we’ll know what’s in it once it’s passed.

In his first Senate race in 1994, then-Rep. Jim Inhofe was running against a Democratic colleague, Rep. Dave McCurdy.  The latter made the strategic error of showing contempt for his constituents at some hoity-toity public event “back east,” declaring that folks in Oklahoma’s idea of quality entertainment is “sitting in a backyard with a six-pack of beer and a bug-zapper.”  In the hands of the brilliant political strategist Fred Davis, a devastating ad’s tag line ran:  “If that’s what Dave McCurdy thinks of Oklahoma, let’s show Dave what we think of him.”  In short order, the Democrat’s contemptuousness became the end of his political career.

Every Senator who votes for the Schumer-Corker-Hoeven amendment and, thereby, helps to enact what can only be correctly described as immigration deform, is on notice:  Later if not sooner, the American people will show them what we think of their serial contempt for all of us.

 

What Does The Gang of Eight Know About The Gun Running From Libya To Syrian Jihadis?

imagesCAOERYUZOn August 1, 2012 Reuters reported that President Obama had signed a “secret” presidential finding authorizing US support to the Syrian rebels that stopped short of lethal weapons. A supplemental “memorandum of notification”, or MON, would need to be added to the finding by the president in order to legalize lethal weapons support.

It has been widely reported that weapons have gone from Libya to Turkey and on to Syria. The question is was it legal? Did the president inform the “Gang of Eight” congressmen as is required by law? And do those congressmen have a duty to the American public to tell us if the president is illegally supplying arms to jihadists?

Current Members of the Gang of Eight – they all know!
John Boehner (R), Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
Nancy Pelosi (D), House Minority Leader
Harry Reid (D), Senate Majority Leader
Mitch McConnell (R), Senate Minority Leader
Mike Rogers (R), Chair of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence
 Dianne Feinstein (D), Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence
Dutch Ruppersberger (D), Ranking Minority Member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence
Saxby Chambliss (R), Ranking Minority Member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence

Audio: House Speaker John Boehner knows something about CIA Annex (and he’s not telling) (shoebat.com)

Here is the relevant portion transcribed:

Ingraham: Mr. Speaker, Rand Paul asked a question about funneling perhaps arms from Turkey through that CIA Annex to be shipped ultimately to Syrian rebels. Hillary Clinton – there was about four or five beats before she answered the question. Do you know anything about this and have you been briefed on any possibilities…?

Boehner: I’m somewhat familiar with the chatter about this and the fact that these arms were moving toward Turkey but most of what I know about this came from a classified source and really can’t elaborate on it.

Excerpt of interview of retired Army Lt. Gen. William G. Boykin by Terence P.  Jeffrey: (and follow the link to the video)

CNSNews.com asked Gen. Boykin: “What possibly was the State  Department doing in Benghazi at that point with that sort of skeletal  group?”

“Well, I think that they were anticipating that they would eventually  be given a directive to support the Syrian rebels and that that would  be the hub of that activity,” said Boykin.

“So, I think they kept the facilities open, they kept them  functioning, they had somebody there that had to be there because of the  communications equipment, because of the potentially classified  material that was still there,” said Boykin. “And I think that they  stayed there in anticipation of supporting the Syrian rebels. They’d  probably been given a heads up on that.”

Boykin stressed that he could not prove that the U.S. was conducting  or planning a covert action to support the Syrian rebels that would  involve the facilities in Benghazi, only that he had information  supporting this supposition.

“Now, with regards to supporting the rebels in Syria, I can’t prove  that there was a covert action program,” said Boykin. “I’ve got a lot of  information that says there was. But if there was and it was done  legally, I have no issue with it. But if it was done without the proper  process being followed, including the Congress being notified–and  generally when the Congress is notified they appropriate money for  it–I’ve got a big issue with it because we don’t operate that way.  That’s outside of the way America should be functioning.”

In June 2011, when the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence  considered the nomination of General David Petraeus to be director of  the CIA, Petraeus submitted a written outline of the legal process for  initiating a covert action. Key elements include that the action must be  formally approved by the president and that key leaders in Congress  must be notified.

“The CIA carries out covert action on behalf of the president,”  Petraeus told the committee. “It is the president, his national security  staff, or other members of the executive branch that propose ideas for  covert action programs that will support the national security  objectives of the U.S. CIA then develops a plan for carrying out the  program, including the preparation of a draft Presidential Finding or  Memorandum of Notification (MON) and supporting paperwork.

“The CIA then submits that plan to the National Security Staff, after  coordination with the ODNI and the Intelligence Community, as  appropriate,” Petraeus said. “The proposed Finding or MON is reviewed by  the National Security Staff and then sent to the president for  approval. Once approved, and after required notification to the two  intelligence committees, the president typically will direct the CIA to  implement the program. Once implemented, the Agency itself, as well as  the NSC and the intelligence committees of Congress, review the conduct  of the program on an ongoing basis.”

Petraeus told the committee he would refuse an order to conduct an illegal covert action.

“If confirmed as Director of the CIA, I would refuse to carry out any  activity that I believed to be illegal,” he said. “As outlined above,  the CIA has an active role in the development of any covert action  program, and I intend to be a strong voice for the CIA in that process.  If I assessed that a covert action proposal would be ineffective or  otherwise unsuited to the Agency’s capabilities, I would recommend  against such a program, and, if necessary, raise my concerns directly  with the president.”

Gen. Boykin said that if there was a legal U.S. covert action in  Libya to help arm the Syrian rebels, or a plan for such an action,  Congress should inform the American people about it.

“In the context of why Ambassador Stephens was there that day, I  think that the American public needs an explanation,” said Boykin. “And  if that explanation is that he was there to meet with the Turkish  General Counsel who was helping to facilitate the flow of arms, then I  think that needs to come out.

“I do not think that the details of the covert action need to be  explained to the American public,” said Boykin. “Otherwise, why would  you have a covert action program? No, I for one don’t think we should be  supporting the rebels in Syria. There’s no good outcome in Syria but I  won’t get off on that tangent. I don’t think that they necessarily have  to explain to us exactly the mechanism or the mechanics of a covert  action program.”

Boykin said he did not believe it would harm U.S. interest for  Congress to simply reveal the fact of such a covert action without going  into the details.

“Absolutely, they could tell us,” said Boykin. “First of all if it  was legal, the Congress has been briefed so the Congress could tell you  tomorrow whether there was an operation to supply arms and material to  the rebels in Syria. If it was legal.”

When told that the CIA, in responding to his interview with  CNSNews.com, said that the supposition that the U.S. was conducting or  planning a covert action to support the Syrian rebels through Benghazi  was “both baseless and flat wrong,” Gen Boykin said: “I am totally  supportive of covert action and believe it is an important method for  advancing U.S. policy. I believe there must be an explanation for why  the ambassador was there on 9/11. I believe there has been significant  information that has come out recently calling into question whether the  ambassador was either involved in or making preparations for supplying  material to the Syrian resistance forces.”

During his 36-year career in the U.S. Army, Lt. Gen. Boykin served as  an original member of Delta Force, as the commander of Delta Force, as  the commander of U.S. Special Forces Command, as the commander of the  U.S. Army Special Forces Center and as deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence. In 1994-1995, he did a tour with the CIA. He is  currently executive vice president of the Family Research Council.

Go to CNS News to read more and listen to the entire interview