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The new Accountability Review Board (ARB) report on the Sept. 11 Benghazi attacks states that the loss of life and damage to U.S. property “rests solely and completely with the terrorists who perpetrated the attacks,” but the “grossly inadequate” security surrounding the mission is what made the raid so successful. The Special Mission’s security reliance on two militias — the poorly skilled Libyan February 17 Martyrs’ Brigade” and the unarmed Blue Mountain Libya (BML) — was “misplaced.”
When Ambassador Stevens’ got there, the February 17 militia “had stopped accompanying Special Mission vehicle movements in protest over salary and working hour.”
The report’s authors found little evidence that the February 17 guards “offered any meaningful defence” of the Special Mission, even though that was their job.
The BML members — who were in charge of opening/closing the front gate, patrolling the compound, and giving warning of an attack — also did the opposite as attackers approached since there was no warning given and “the speed with which attackers entered raised the possibility that BML guards left the C1 pedestrian gate open.”
The result is that men with AK-47s rushed in and began trashing the place while Ambassador Stevens and Information Management Officer (IMO) Sean Smith — guarded by a lone security officer — were ushered into a bathroom, where they both died of smoke inhalation.