- The Washington Times - Friday, August 17, 2018

Benghazi terror attack survivor Kris Paronto made it clear this week that he won’t be defending former CIA director John Brennan anytime soon.

The former Army Ranger and CIA contractor who lived to tell the tale of the Sept. 11, 2012 terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Libya, said Mr. Brennan essentially got off easy when President Trump revoked his security clearance.

Mr. Paronto lost his security clearance years ago for telling his account of the attack.

Amb. Christopher Stevens, foreign service officer Sean Smith, and CIA contractors Tyrone S. Woods and Glen Doherty were killed during the siege on a CIA compound.

SEE ALSO: Benghazi report ‘full of inaccuracies,’ say CIA contractors

“My principles are greater than clearances too John, especially when you and the @CIA kool-aid drinkers punishes us for not going along with the Benghazi cover-up story in order to protect you, @HillaryClinton’s & @BarackObama’s failures. You put your politics before us,” he tweeted at Mr. Brennan.

Mr. Brennan, who was former President Obama’s CIA chief, said Americans should “gravely worry” about the repercussions of Mr. Trump taking away his security clearance.

“Of course the former @CIA and @ODNIgov directors sign a petition, because they want the continue to feel they are above the law and above us common folk,” Mr. Paronto said. “No more eltists [sic], rules apply to you just like everyone else. The @CIA @FBI and @NSAGov did everything in it’s power to cover up shady @BarackObama activities, criminal @HillaryClinton activities&tried to influence the presidential election with misinformation&leaking info to the MSM. Now they’re up in arms over their Security clearances?”

Mr. Paronto, who helped write the book “13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened In Benghazi” (later turned into a feature film), told Fox News that he was given three nondisclosure agreements within six months after returning home.

He maintained that his security clearances were revoked under dubious reasons.

“Normally when you have a clearance suspended, you’re supposed to know why … I was never given that,” he said told the network. “It was his determination whether we kept our clearances or not. … [Our team came] back from being on the ground to be treated as a second class citizen. You come back and you’re called a liar. Brennan came in and there was no talk of ‘hey, good job guys,’ not that you look for it, but instead, it was ‘don’t say anything guys, we don’t want the truth to get out.’”

A 2014 report by the House Intelligence Committee found that the Obama administration acted properly during the attack.

The military and the CIA were also declared clear of any wrongdoing.

“It’s a pity though that the truth is something that’s not very popular in today’s society,” Mr. Paronto and fellow terror survivor John Tiegen told CNN in December 2014.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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