Senate Panel Faults State Department And Pentagon In Benghazi Attack Report

A bipartisan Senate Homeland Security report to be released today has found that the State and Defense Departments share blame for the security failures that resulted in the death of 5 Americans after an attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya back in September.

An independent review earlier this month faulted the State Department for failing to adequately respond to security requests prior to the attacks and called for restoring diplomatic security funding Republicans previously cut. While State Department officials have previously accepted responsibility for inadequate security in Benghazi, the new Senate report expands blame to the Pentagon, the Hill reports:

The report also blames the Pentagon, finding that the Defense Department (DOD) had failed to place adequate resources in the region to respond “in the event of a crisis.”

“Although DOD attempted to quickly mobilize its resources, it did not have assets or personnel close enough to reach Benghazi in a timely fashion,” the report concludes.

The Senate report also criticizes the Obama administration’s mixed messages in the aftermath of the Benghazi assault, claiming the White House was “inconsistent” about whether it constituted a terror attack. The inconsistency “contributed to the confusion in the public discourse” about the attacks, wrote Sens. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and Susan Collins (R-ME).

“We’re going to solve this,” President Obama said on NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday. “We’re not going to pretend that this was not a problem. This was a huge problem. And we’re going to implement every single recommendation that’s been put forward.”