Panetta defends military response to Benghazi attack

Image: Presidio of Monterey: DLIFLC & USAG Defense Secretary Leon…

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta visits POM
Image: Presidio of Monterey: DLIFLC & USAG

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told a Senate panel Thursday that “lack of adequate warning” and logistical issues prevented the military from immediately responding to the deadly attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya last year.

Four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens, died in the Sept. 11 attack at the U.S. mission in Benghazi.

Panetta said there was no specific intelligence of an imminent attack on Benghazi. The consulate was among 281 other sites that had been threatened in the months leading up to the attack.

“There was not enough time given the speed of the attack for armed military assets to respond,” Panetta told the Armed Services Committee, adding that “time and distance” challenged the American response.

Source: Tom Vanden Brook and Catalina Camia for USA Today

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