Libyan Militiaman Says He Warned U.S. of Dangers
Two days before the deadly Sept. 11 attack on Americans in Libya, three U.S. officials met pro-government militias working to provide security in the city of Benghazi.
In that meeting, which included the American economic and political counselors, Mohammed el Gharabi, a leader of a prominent militia, says he warned the Americans that the security situation in Benghazi was deteriorating.
Assassinations are becoming rampant; no one is safe, including militiamen like himself, he says he told the Americans.
He asked for help to secure Benghazi and suggested scaling back or possibly closing diplomatic missions until conditions were more secure. He didn’t cite any specific threat, but reminded the Americans that there had been an attack in June on the fortified U.S. Consulate, which is enclosed by a high wall, topped with concertina wire.
They didn’t heed his warning, he says.
So far, the U.S. government has been tight-lipped about the security procedures that day when a two-pronged attack on the consulate and a safe house left four Americans dead, including Ambassador Chris Stevens.