Benghazi investigations included CIA activities; personnel had secret base in Libyan city

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But the issue is complicated, officials say, because many of those who were at the CIA base near the main Benghazi compound might be undercover or covert operatives whose identities cannot be disclosed.

Moreover, said the source familiar with the inquiry, the panel and department itself both “have an obligation to protect people’s privacy” especially in regard to those who were wounded. “It was important that people weren’t forced into the glare” of the media frenzy around the attacks last year.

He added that many criticisms appeared to be thinly based. “The inventive quality of a lot of that analysis was shocking to me,” he said of Republican commentary on the attacks last year.

On the Senate side of the Capitol on Thursday, there was also “some Republican interest” in another Benghazi hearing like the one Mr. Johnson was calling for, one staffer said.

“But, as you know, the majority makes the decisions on hearings,” the staffer added.

A spokeswoman for Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Sen. Robert Menendez, New Jersey Democrat, said no such hearing was scheduled, but did not immediately respond to follow-up questions.

Whether or not the Senate holds hearings, the rekindling row threatens to overshadow a solemn ceremony at Foggy Bottom Friday.

Mr. Kerry will be joined by Vice President Joseph R. Biden to officially commemorate Stevens, State Department officer Sean Smith, and former Navy SEALs Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty, the four Americans killed in the Benghazi attacks.

Their names are among a total of eight being unveiled during a special ceremony as additions to the Memorial Plaque located in the lobby of the State Department’s Foggy Bottom headquarters, the department announced.

The four others are Anne T. Smedinghoff, a Foreign Service officer, who died this month in Afghanistan from injuries sustained during a bombing; Ragaei Said Abdelfattah, a USAID Foreign Service officer, killed during a suicide bombing in Afghanistan in August; Joseph Gregory Fandino, a Foreign Service officer killed in Vietnam in 1972; and Francis J. Savage, a USAID Foreign Service officer, also killed in Vietnam, in 1967.

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About the Author
Guy Taylor

Guy Taylor

Guy Taylor is the National Security Team Leader at The Washington Times, overseeing the paper’s State Department, Pentagon and intelligence community coverage. He’s also a frequent guest on The McLaughlin Group and C-SPAN.

His series on political, economic and security developments in Mexico won a 2012 Virginia Press Association award.

Prior to rejoining The Times in 2011, his work was ...

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Shaun Waterman

Shaun Waterman

Shaun Waterman is an award-winning reporter for The Washington Times, covering foreign affairs, defense and cybersecurity. He was a senior editor and correspondent for United Press International for nearly a decade, and has covered the Department of Homeland Security since 2003. His reporting on the Sept. 11 Commission and the tortuous process by which some of its recommendations finally became ...

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