The real question about Benghazi: Was Chris Stevens a CIA agent?

While a faux debate rages, no one is asking the real question about Benghazi. Photo: Associated Press

TAMPA, November 25, 2012 ― The media can’t get enough of the “investigation” into what the Obama administration knew about what was happening in Benghazi and when they knew it. Obama survived the initial furor and got reelected, but the controversy rages on.

What is the real question here? Judging from media coverage and the Congressional investigation, we might assume that the only matter to be resolved is whether the Obama administration knew that a coordinated terrorist attack was underway, rather than a spontaneous demonstration against an anti-Muslim film. According to this narrative, Obama could have been more proactive in responding to the attack and sent in military assistance to try to save Stevens and his associates.

None of this would seem to be the stuff of a major scandal. The Obama administration may or may not have handled the situation properly. If they didn’t and tried to cover up their incompetence, it would hardly be a new Watergate. The intensity of the controversy doesn’t jibe with its supposed cause.

Or is there another reason for a cover-up by the White House? Was Chris Stevens a CIA agent?

As far back as October 25, Fox News’ Andrew Napolitano asked this question and he was not alone. He cited his colleague Justin Fishel’s report on the same subject. According to Fishel:

“In reality, CIA agents and other intelligence officials were operating out of Benghazi conducting delicate missions, including the search for over 20,000 deadly shoulder-fired missiles previously owned by Muammar Qaddafi’s Libyan forces … Both the CIA outpost and the consulate were attacked on Sept. 11. Two of the men killed, Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods, were hit by indirect fire while defending the intelligence post, not the consulate.”

If the September 11 attack targeted a CIA base actively conducting covert operations within Libya, it renders the whole question of whether the attack was a reaction to the infamous video or a coordinated terrorist attack moot. Under those circumstances, it would be neither. It might more accurately be described as a “counterinsurgency operation” carried out by forces opposed to the new U.S.-installed Libyan government. Perhaps they were aligned with the ousted Qaddafi government. Perhaps they were al Qaeda who were happy to accept U.S. assistance in getting rid of Qaddafi and are now happy to turn on the U.S. That would be a familiar story.

Regardless, Stevens’ death might have been collateral damage in an attack against a known (in Libya) CIA covert operation. Or Stevens might have been a CIA operative himself who was not only participating in the post-revolution operations in 2012 but had actively participated in the overthrow of the Qaddafi regime. According to Napolitano, this theory might fit the facts better than any offered so far.

“Now we can connect some dots. If Stevens was a CIA agent, he was in violation of international law by acting as the U.S. ambassador. And if he and his colleagues were intelligence officials, they are not typically protected by Marines, because they ought to have been able to take care of themselves.”

If Stevens was a CIA agent actively involved in covert operations, it would be a major international scandal. It would call into question not only the Obama administration, but all of the U.S. government’s activities during its decade-long “war on terror.”

So why have neither the media nor the Congressional committee even asked the question?

Fishel confirms that the House oversight committee investigating the incident has been instructed not to investigate certain aspects of the Benghazi operation.

That means that no one is even trying to get at the truth. The Congressional investigation and the media frenzy amount to little more than a distraction for the American public, which seems to have taken the bait hook, line and sinker. They join the two major parties in fiercely debating a non-issue while ignoring the crucial questions asked by a few actual journalists. 

Was Chris Stevens a CIA agent? Was the attack on Benghazi a terrorist attack or a counterattack against a covert military operation? Are there other U.S. diplomats actively participating in covert operations while posing as ambassadors of peace to foreign governments? Has the U.S. government become as immoral as the terrorists it purports to be fighting? What else do we not know about its international activities?

The silence is deafening.

Tom Mullen is the author of A Return to Common Sense: Reawakening Liberty in the Inhabitants of America.


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Thomas Mullen

Tom Mullen is the author of A Return to Common Sense: Reawakening Liberty in the Inhabitants of America. He writes weekly columns on his blog and has been featured on The Daily Caller, The Huffington Post, Daily Paul, LewRockwell.com, 321 Gold! and Peter Schiff’s EuroPac.net. Tom has been a guest on Fox’s Freedom Watch with Judge Andrew Napolitano, Adam Vs. the Man, Free Talk Live, and numerous other programs.

Tom is originally a native of Buffalo, NY and graduate of Canisius College. He earned a Master’s Degree in English from State University of New York College at Buffalo. He now resides with his family in Tampa, FL.

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