The Campaign Spot

Benghazi Whistleblower’s Lawyer Warns of Stolen Missiles

Over at CNS News:

Former U.S. Attorney Joe DiGenova, who now represents one of the Benghazi whistleblowers, told a Washington radio station Monday that the real scandal in Benghazi is the theft of 400 surface-to-air missiles by some “very ugly people.”

The Obama administration fears those missiles will be used to shoot down an airplane or blow up one of our embassies, he said.

DiGenova said he learned about this from his client Mark Thompson, who served as deputy coordinator for operations in the Bureau of Counterterrorism at the U.S. Department of State; he was among those testifying on the Hill about the events in Benghazi:

https://youtube.com/watch?v=kDKrUgGNjqw%3Frel%3D0

The description DiGenova attributes to his client largely aligns with what is known about the U.S. mission in Benghazi, detailed at great length and with public sources, here:

During the Libyan civil war, the United States government at least tacitly supported the Qatari effort to arm the rebels, in violation of a U.N. arms embargo. The Obama administration later learned that the weapons were going to Islamists, and acknowledged that the postwar situation of unguarded stockpiles presented an enormous security threat to the region. The CIA was the centerpiece of an effort to recover these weapons, and that was indeed a major component of what the agency was doing in Benghazi in September 2012, in part using the State Department’s facilities. During this time, a large number of weapons, including anti-aircraft missiles, were leaving Libya and arriving in Turkey en route to Syrian rebels — and the CIA had personnel in both countries assigned to monitor and assist the arms shipments.

On October 23, 2011, Con Coughlin of the Daily Telegraph reported that the Central Intelligence Agency was on the ground in Libya in the effort to recover the missiles:

Since [Qaddafi]’s regime fell in late August teams of CIA officers, supported by other intelligence services such as Britain’s MI6, have been scouring Libya in search of the missing missiles. Their main target is the thousands of shoulder-fired, surface-to-air missiles [Qaddafi] bought from Moscow during the past decade which, were they to fall into the wrong hands, would pose a massive security risk.

We now know that a significant portion of the U.S. presence in Benghazi was CIA employees. Reuters quoted unidentified government officials who said the annex’s mission was “collecting information on the proliferation of weaponry looted from Libyan government arsenals, including surface-to-air missiles.”

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