- - Tuesday, September 24, 2013

In the five months leading up to the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya, there were two bombings on the consulate there. One blew a big hole in a wall; following it, U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens requested more security. Instead, the number of security personnel was reduced. Then-Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has testified that millions of cables came to her office, and because she could not read them all, she did not see the security requests.

As one might expect, our venerable State Department has a way of winnowing out cables that need the secretary’s attention. It is highly probable that the security requests went to the Libyan desk officer, who read them and sent them up the chain of command. Meetings were surely held. For some reason, the people allegedly at fault have not been punished. We all can guess what the reason is: They know too much.

Our investigating lawmakers need to find the 2012 desk officer and ask what he did with the security requests and what happened afterward. Getting the name should be easy. Just phone the former deputy chief of mission, Gregory Hicks.

EUGENE G. WINDCHY


Alexandria