Sensitive documents detailing American operations in Libya remain only loosely secured at the U.S. consulate more than three weeks after an attack killed the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans, Michael Birnbaum of the Washington Post reports.
The documents—some still scattered across the floors of the looted Benghazi compound—include information about weapons collection efforts, emergency evacuation protocols, the complete itinerary of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens’s trip, and the names, photographs, phone numbers and other personal information of Libyans who were contracted to secure the U.S. mission.
Many documents, like Ambassador Stevens’s diary, may have already disappeared in the chaotic aftermath of the Sept. 11 attack.
Those found reveal that the Americans at the consulate were discussing the possibility of an attack on Sept. 9—the U.S. mission’s security office to the Libyan-government-sanctioned militia guarding the compound made plans for a “quick reaction force” that would provide additional security in the event of an attack.
The White House denied claims that it ignored credible information about an impending attack and has been criticised about both the lax security before the attack and the slow pace of the investigation afterwards.
It turns out the security was pretty bare-bones, with three or more guards on the compound any time the head of the mission or the ambassador was present.
The only people currently watching over the two adjoining villa complexes are two private security guards paid for by the compound’s Libyan owner. Libyan investigators have visited just once.
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