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New York Times Report Sheds New Light On Benghazi Attack

Sara Newman |
December 29, 2013 | 1:59 p.m. PST

Executive Producer

Benghazi up for discussion again, (Twitpic)
Benghazi up for discussion again, (Twitpic)
One of the big issues with investigative journalism is that sometimes there is simply no story to uncover. Other times, however, a few months of rigorous digging pays off in a big way.
An in-depth New York Times investigation led by David Kirkpatrick reports that al Qaeda was not, in fact, behind the Sept. 11 2012 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya that killed four Americans— including U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens. 

"The attack does not appear to have been meticulously planned, but neither was it spontaneous or without warning signs," Kirkpatrick concludes

He compiled the evidence for his six-part report from numerous first-person accounts garnered during an extensive interview process. 

“It was an armed terrorist attack motivated in large part by the video,” explained Kirkpatrick, in an interview on Meet the Press Sunday morning, following the release of the New York Times report. He alleges that the attack was a reaction to The Innocence of Muslims, not to al Qaeda’s terrorist regime. 

Yet, even after the release of the New York Times Report, Rep. Darrell Issa, the Republican chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, continues to stand by claims that a group affiliated with the terrorist organization al Qaeda was involved in the 2012 attack on the American consulate in Benghazi.

“There is just no chance that this was an al Qaeda attack, if, by al Qaeda, you mean the organization founded by bin Laden,” Kirkpatrick said in his interview with Meet the Press. “The only way [allegations blaming al Qaeda] make sense to me is if you’re using the term al Qaeda…to describe…a local group of Islamist militants who may dislike democracy or have a grudge against the United States.”

While the report may help Susan Rice reclaim some respect among peers who criticized her for inaccurate statements regarding the Benghazi attack, new findings may have the GOP putting its foot in its mouth. 

“It was very clear to the individuals on the ground that this was an Al Qaeda-led event,” said Michigan Republican Mike Rogers, chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, in an interview on Fox News in November. Yet, Saturday’s New York Times Report suggests that there is no actual evidence to back up Roger’s claim. 


Contact Executive Producer Sara Newman hereFollow her on Twitter. 



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