U.S. Embassy In Libya Warned Against Blaming Attack On Video

U.S. Embassy In Libya Warned Against Blaming Attack On Video

Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s embassy in Tripoli, Libya, warned State Department officials in Washington, D.C., NOT to blame the Youtube video, ‘Innocence of Muslims’, for the September 11 2012 when militants attacked the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi.

“Our monitoring of the Libyan media and conversations with Libyans suggest that the films not as explosive of an issue here as it appears to be in other countries in the region,” the email sent by the U.S. embassy in Tripoli read.

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Breitbart

WASHINGTON, Nov. 2 (UPI) — An email sent by the U.S. embassy in Libya warned former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and other State Department officials not to blame a deadly attack at the consulate in Benghazi on protests over an anti-Muslim video.

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The email was sent Sept. 14, 2012, three days after the attack left four Americans dead.

The House Select Committee on Benghazi released the email in full — with names redacted — Saturday, one week after it was mentioned during a committee hearing. It urges State Department officials to be “cautious in our local messaging with regard to the inflammatory film trailer.”

Protests in largely Muslim countries over the trailer for the anti-Muslim, American-made film led up to the Benghazi attack. Clinton, at the time, made public comments linking the protests to the attack, which killed U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens.

Clinton has come under attack by Republican members of the House committee for initially connecting the protests and the attack, while at the same time telling other foreign officials and her family the attack was caused by an al-Qaida-like terror group.

“Our monitoring of the Libyan media and conversations with Libyans suggest that the films not as explosive of an issue here as it appears to be in other countries in the region,” the email sent by the U.S. embassy in Tripoli read, saying the majority of social media comments about the attack hadn’t mentioned the video.

“So if we post messaging about the video specifically, we may draw unwanted attention to it. And it is becoming increasingly clear that the series of events in Benghazi was much more terrorist attack than a protest which escalated into violence. It is our opinion that in our messaging, we want to distinguish, not conflate, the events in other countries with this well-planned attack by militant extremists,” it continued.

Clinton, during testimony in 2013 before a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the attack, said to her it was less important what caused it to happen and more important to find who did it and bring them to justice.

“Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night and decided they’d go kill some Americans,” Clinton said at the hearing. “What difference — at this point, what difference does it make?”

The full email, as released by the House Select Committee on Benghazi:

From: [redacted]

To: [redacted]

Subject: messaging on the attacks in Libya

Date: Friday, September 14, 2012 6:43:39 AM

Colleagues, I mentioned to [redacted] this morning, and want to share with all of you, our view at Embassy Tripoli that we must be cautious in our local messaging with regard to the inflammatory film trailer, adapting it to Libyan conditions. Our monitoring of the Libyan media and conversations with Libyans suggest that the films not as explosive of an issue here as it appears to be in other countries in the region. The overwhelming majority of the FB comments and tweets we’ve received from Libyans since the Ambassador’s death have expressed deep sympathy, sorrow, and regret. They have expressed anger at the attackers, and emphasized that this attack does not represent Libyans or Islam. Relatively few have even mentioned the inflammatory video. So if we post messaging about the video specifically, we may draw unwanted attention to it. And it is becoming increasingly clear that the series of events in Benghazi was much more terrorist attack than a protest which escalated into violence. It is our opinion that in our messaging, we want to distinguish, not conflate, the events in other countries with this well-planned attack by militant extremists. I have discussed this with [redacted] and he shares PAS’s view.

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