tv Investigation of Benghazi Attack Part 1 CSPAN October 21, 2015 8:05pm-10:39pm EDT
interest in those areas. i respect when you have done with your ten year of secretary of state representing this nation and all of those in our foreign service who are on the diplomatic front line in turbulent and dangerous parts of the globe. it's a reflection of your leadership as well as your patriotism and your abiding belief in the power of our policies to move the world toward democracy, peace, and preservation of human rights. i believe we have always welcomed your openness and cooperation. your letter december 18 to chairman kerry was appreciated by members of both sides as another example of that openness and cooperation. let me say, say, we share your mission here today, we look forward to a constructive dialogue today to learn from the events that occurred in benghazi and advisor policies to protect the nearly 70000 men and women in d.c. and more than 275 post around the world. ambassador chris stephen, sean smith and two others lost their
lives on september 11, 2012 during terrorist attacks. as terrorist attacks. as a committee we under their service to our nation, we grieve with their families. we also resolve to take specific actions to prevent future incidents. we may not be able to prevent everything all terror attack attack in the future but we can, and we must make sure our embassy and employees, starting with high risk, high threat posts are capable of withstanding such an attack. to that end, secretary clinton and the department have agreed to implement all 29 of the administrative review board recommendations. today will hear more about the progress of the department has made toward implementation of many of the recommendations. i would add, congress is not without responsibility here. we also have an obligation to do our part to comply with the administration review board recommendations. it is my intention to work with members
of the committee and members of the department on legislation to improve security and better protect our employees. one of the first and easiest things we can do is to ensure the contracting rules allow for sufficient flexibility to allow them to quickly make decisions where security is at risk and to hire local guards not only on the basis of the lowest price acceptable but on a best value basis. to ensure we are not just checking the box when we are securing our building and protecting our people. state has this authority through march, afghanistan, pakistan and iraq but particularly in high-risk areas. the administration review board also supports expanded the marine security guard program. hiring a more diplomatic
security personnel and of critical importance of authorizing full funding for the embassy construction, capital cost share program. this was can created in the aftermath of the 1998 bombings of the u.s. bombings in nairobi. it resulted. it resulted in 224 deaths including 11 american citizens. in its first year it funded the construction of 13 new facilities followed by 11 and 2006, nine and 2005. nearly every your sense, fewer facilities have been built in the previous year due to both funding decreases and the fact that allocations for the account have not been indexed to inflation. cost of the construction industry worldwide has risen. at the funding) white 2013 we estimate will be able to construct just three new facilities despite the fact there were a few dozen posts that have been designated as high risk, high threat posts that need to be replaced right now. the lesson of benghazi is not
only about art resources, it's about the communication be between the agencies. the department should be assessing and regularly designated which posts it considers to be high threat and high risk. using that information to drive decisions about security and reporting to the congress about these posts. the illustratively review board sees failures that resulted in an adequate security and that responsibility for these failures was shared by washington, u.s. embassy in tripoli, and by the nonstatus special mission. this left it clear with the requirements were or should be. clearly, that needs to change.
there are two other crucial points made by the immense trait of review board that i think deserve attention on a larger scale of this committee. first, the emphasis on the growing challenge faced by all-american officials operating overseas up how to remain active in high threat environment. how to get out beyond the fortified walls of our facility to conduct director, local interaction required for effective diplomacy. how to we remain accessible to foreign government civil society and the private sector while still securing our embassies and protecting our people in these and bierman's? second, the ministry to review board points out the department has been resourced challenge for many years. this has constrained our mission and led to restricting resources. it has become a conditioned response. this is to to say that decisions about security resources being made more on costs than on need and value.
the answer cannot be to cut more from other foreign affairs accounts upon security. that that approach fails to recognize that diplomacy and foreign aid are down payments that yield dividends to in terms of goodwill, open board for the export of american products, protection of our intellectual property, and most important cooperation on security and counterterrorism. there is a lot to discuss. mdm. sec., welcome again we appreciate your time. on a personal note because this is likely to be your last hearing before this committee, your leadership will be missed, i speak for many when i say you have been an outstanding secretary of state. an exemplary represented of of america on foreign policy, american interest to around the world. you have change the face of america abroad, extended the hospitable reach of our nation to ordinary citizens in addition to world leaders. during our tenure you steered us through economic crisis in europe and changing relations in europe, regime change in the
arab rule world, and a trend toward level strength based on economics rather than arms. i personally appreciate the fact that you use your office to aggressively implement sanctions against iran. i think are the most traveled secretary in history. you supported and met with those individuals who do not live in the limelight, women, children, women, children, the lgbt community and religious. you made a difference in the personal lives of so many people and for that you have thanks of a grateful nation. i know you will not go gently from the world stage and i look for to working closely with you in the future. we think you for your service here in the senate and a secretary of state, we welcome you back anytime to talk about the issues of the day, recognizing that you may not care to spend anymore time in in the chair than you already have. we certainly appreciate your incredible service. with that, let me turn to my
friend and colleague, the new ranking member of the community. >> think mr. chairman. thank you for your comments and also first following through as we have all discussed to have this hearing today. want to welcome the new community members and i know there'll be a time to talk about committee going forward. in many ways this is closing up business from before. i think you very much for having this hearing and look forward to working with everybody on the committee. mme. sec., i want to thank you also. we have. we have had a number of conversations over the last several weeks and over the last four years, i want to thank you for coming in today and honoring the commitment you made some time ago. i know you have had some health issues and still undergoing and yet you are here today, i think we all respect the tremendous amount of hard work you put forth over the last four years. you probably traveled more than
any other secretary of state in history. you came at your job in a way that we all thought you would with hard work, diligence, i know all of us appreciate the transparency for which you talk to all of us. i do want to say that benghazi, 12 us represents a lot of different things. in some ways, the aftermath in particular what we saw represents the very worst of washington. the most bizarre briefing i have ever attended was a briefing we had on september 20 where the intelligence community said more than nothing and it was a bizarre briefing at that. i happened in the middle of a political campaign and there is
a lot of spin from the white house, a lot of comments made on both sides of the aisle which heightened the focus on benghazi. it also represented a department that in many weight made decisions that were not based on what was best for those in the field. i think it represented, in many ways the denial of the world as it is today. i think after reading the arb it also represented, to me a committee that has never done its work, or at least in the six years i have been here has never done the kind of oversight that this committee ought to do. i think it also represents an awakening. i know you have known this and especially many of the members of this committee have known this, the spiking of the ball and thinking that when osama bin laden was gone, that was the end of al qaeda. we know we know nothing could be further from the truth. his actual a time where al qaeda
is on the rise, the world in many ways is even more dangerous as we lack a central command and instead have these nodes that are scattered throughout north africa and other places. this creates an opportunity for us to develop a policy that really addresses the world as it really is today. thirdly, mme. sec., i know that it was a great personal lost you that chris stevens died in a way that he did and his three colleagues died in the way they did. i know, you know i was was on the ground in libya immediately after this and i know you have experienced this and some other members of the committee has but to look at the faces on the ground in libya in a state of shock. people we sent there during expeditionary diplomacy who felt they were on a tether and candidly did not have the support from washington that they needed to do the things they needed to do.
i think this is an opportunity for us to examine the systemic failures. i note you will be, as per our conversation last night, as transparent as you have always been. i think this is a great opportunity for the incoming secretary to learn from what has happened. i know that many time political appointees have great difficulties with bureaucracy that exists within a department where sometimes people feel they can wait you out until the next person comes along. i think this is an opportunity to look at those failures. it's an opportunity for us also, as a committee, and as a country to develop a foreign policy that reflects again, the dynamics of the region as they really are today. lastly, i think this is an opportunity for this committee to finally do the work that it
should have been doing for years. when you read the arb report and you realize we have never done an authorization of the state department in the six years we have been here, we have never looked at how foreign aid has been spent. we have never never done a top to bottom review. i know it is something that people like you when you come to this position look at as something that is healthy and can be done in partnership. i know there is mention of cost. i was really disappointed with the arb when the first came that came out of the mouth of two people i respect was money, money, money. the fact is this committee would have no idea whether the appropriate amount of money is being spent or if that could have prevented what happened in benghazi because we have never done an authorization. i look at this as a trend is opportunity. i want to to close again by thinking you for your service. thanking you for your friendship. thanking you for your
transparency. i certainly look for to your testimony. i know it it will be presented in a way that will be constructive and helpful for us in the future. >> thank you. mme. secretary we welcome your remarks. >> thank you very much mr. chairman, ranking member, members of of the committee both older and new. i'm grateful for this opportunity and i thank you for your patience to give me the chance to come and address these issues with you. as both the chairman and ranking member have said, the terrorist attacks in benghazi on september 11, 2012 that claimed the lives of four brave americans chris stevens, sean smith, tyrone woods, and glenn doherty, are part of a broader strategic challenge to the united states and our partners in north africa. today i want briefly to offer some context of this challenge, share what we learned, how we are protecting our people, and where we can work together to
not only honor our fallen colleagues but champion americans interest in values. any clear eyed examination of this matter must begin with this sobering fact. since 1988, there have been 19 accountability review boards investigating attacks on american diplomats and their facilities. benghazi joins a long list of tragedy for our department, for other agencies, and for america. hostages taken in tehran in 1979, our mnc and bombed in beirut 1983, covert towers in saudi arabia in 1996, our in 1996, our embassies in east africa in 1988. consulate staff murdered in 2004, the coast attack in 2009 and too many others. since 1977, 65 american, 65 american diplomatic personnel have been killed by terrorists. now course, the list of attacks
foiled, crises averted, and live saves is even longer. we should never affect that our security professionals get it right more than 99% of the time against difficult odds all over the world. that is why, like my predecessors i have literally trusted them with my life. let's also remember that administration in both parties, in partnership with congress have made concerted and good-faith effort to learn from these attacks and deaths. to implement recommendations from the review board to seek the necessary resources and to do better in protecting our people from what has become constantly, evolving threats. that is the least that the men and women who serve our country does her. again, what we are doing now with your help, as secretary i have no higher priority and no greater
responsibility. as i have said many times, i take responsibility. nobody is more committed to getting this right. i am determined to leave the state department and our country stay for, stronger, and more secure. not taking responsibility met moving quickly in those first on certain hours and days to respond to the immediate crisis. also to further protect our people and posted high threat areas across the region and world, it meant launching an independent investigation to determine exactly what happened in benghazi and to recommend steps to improvement, it meant improve intensifying our efforts to combat terrorism. let me share some of the lessons learned, the steps we have taken and the work we continue to do. first, let's let's start on the night of september 11 it self in
those difficult days. i directed our response from the state department, stayed in close contact with officials from across the government and the libyan government. i saw firsthand what ambassador in chairman mullen called timely and exceptional court nation. no delays in decision-making, no denials of support from washington or from our military. i want to echo the review boards praise for the valor and courage of the people on the ground, especially the the security professional in benghazi and tripoli. the board said the response saved american lives in real time and it did. the very next morning, i told the american people that heavily armed militants assaulted our compound. i vowed to bring them to justice. i stood with pres. obama in the rose garden as he spoke of an act of terror. it is also important to recall that in that same period, we were were seen violent attacks on our embassies in cairo, tunis, cartoon, as, as well as
large protests outside many other posts with thousands of our diplomats are. i immediately ordered a review of our security around the world with particular scrutiny for high threat posts. i asked the department of defense to join interagency security assessment teams and to dispatch hundreds of additional marine security guards. i named the first deputy assistant secretary of state in high threat post so areas get the attention they need. second, even as we took the k'ain, rkziufiy eveaffeho &o ldoeyedpa
we are initiating a high threat post review chaired by the secretary of state. and ongoing reviews by the deputy secretary to ensure pivotal questions to reach the highest levels. we will regularize protocols for sharing information with congress. these are designed to increase safety of our diplomats and experts and reduce the chance of another benghazi happening again. we have also been moving forward on the third front, addressing the broader strategic challenge in north africa and the wider region. after all, benghazi benghazi did not happen in a vacuum. the arab revolution has shattered security forces across the region. instability has created an expanding safe haven for terrorists who look to ask then there attacks like we have seen last week in nigeria.
let me offer our deepest condolences to our families of americans and all the people from many nations who were killed and injured in that recent hostage crisis. we are in close touch with the government of nigeria, we stand ready to provide assistance, we are seeking to gain a fuller understanding of what took place so we can work together with nigerians and others to prevent terrorist attacks in the future. concerns about terrorism and instability are of course not new. they have been a top priority for the entire administration's national security team. we have been facing a rapidly changing threat environments and we have two keep working and ways to increase pressure on al qaeda and islamic and other terrorist groups in the region. in the first hours and days i confirmed with leaders, the president of libya, the foreign ministers of morocco and at series of meetings at the united nations general assembly where there is a special meeting. in
october october i flew tell jerry a to discuss the fight against a q i am. in in december he cochaired the administration he started, the global counterterrorism which was meeting in abu dhabi and leaders working to build reform secure services. we focused on targeting safe havens, slowing the flow of new recruits. we continue to hunt the tears responsible for the attacks in benghazi and are determined to bring them to justice. we are using our diplomatic and economic tools to support these emerging democracies and to strengthen security forces and help provide a path away from extremism. let me underscore the importance
of the united states continuing to lead in the middle east, north africa and around the world. we have come a long way in the past four years and we cannot afford to retreat now. when america is absent, especially from unstable environment there are consequences. extremes that that ms. them takes root, our interest suffer, or security at home is threatened. that is why why i sent chris stevens to benghazi in the first place. nobody knew the dangers better than chris, first during the revolution then during the transition. a week libyan government, marauding militias, terrorist groups, a bomb exploded in the parking lot of his hotel but he did not waver because he understood it was critical for america to be represented there, at that time. our men and women who serve overseas understand that we accept a level of risk to protect the country we love.
they represent the best tradition of a bold and generous nation. they cannot work in bunkers and do their jobs. it is our responsibility to make sure they have the resources they need and to do everything we can to reduce the risk. for me, this is is not just a matter policy, it is personal. i stood next to president obama as the marines carry those plagued ray's caskets off the plane at angers. i put my arms around the mothers and fathers, the sisters and others, the sons and daughters, and the lot wives left alone to raise their children. it has been one of the great honors of my life to lead the men and women of the state department at u.s. a id. the early 70000 in washington,
270 post round the world. they get up and go to work every day, often every day, often in difficult and dangerous circumstances because they believe, as we believe, the united states is the most extraordinary post for peace and progress the world has ever known. when we suffered tragedies overseas, as we have, the the number of americans applying for the foreign service actually increases. that tells us everything we need to know about what kind of patriots i am talking about. they do ask what they can do for their country and america is stronger for it. so today, after four years in this job, traveling nearly 1 million miles, visiting 112 countries, my faith in 12 countries, my faith in our country and our future is stronger than ever. every time the blue-and-white airplane carrying the words united states of america touches down in some far-off capital, i feel again the honor it is to
represent the world's indispensable nation. i am confident that with your help, we will keep the united states safe, strong, and exceptional. i want to think this committee for your partnership and your support of diplomats and diplomat experts. you know the importance of the work they do day in and day out. you know that america's values and vital security interests are at stake. i appreciate what ranking member corker just said, it is definitely critical that this committee and the state department, with your new secretary and former chairman work together to really understand and address the resources, support, and changes needed to face what our increasingly complex threats. i know you share my sense of responsibility and urgency.
while we may not agree on everything, let's stay focused on what really matters. protecting our people in the country we love. thank you for the support you have personally given me over the last four years. i now would be happy to take your questions. >> thank you madam secretary for your statement. we have a full committee present so in order to give each member an opportunity to ask questions i will limit those questions to five minutes and i will start off with my cell. madam madam secretary, we saw some late-night reporting on discussions about the physical location of in benghazi. i understand this information came from the production of documents by the department which we reap appreciate appreciate your cooperation in providing those documents. my understanding is the location of mission benghazi was not going one and the ultimate conclusion of ambassador stevens was that we needed to be in benghazi, the cradle of the libyan revolution and that while
he was continuously reviewing other location options that it was his conclusion, as well as security personnel of the department that the current mission state was the best choice. despite a higher price take because it was more secure then returning to the hotel where there had been a bomb and bomb threats, and moving closer to the nx because because it was closer to the row. can you give us your insights on the decision-making process regarding the location of the mission? as part of that, in your response you touch upon it in your opening statement, what actions were you and your staff taking the night of september 11 and into september the 12? >> first, you're right right mrn ongoing discussion. when for chris first landed in benghazi he stayed in a hotel other representatives and other nations. there were attacks in the
vicinity including in the parking lot of the hotel. the the decision was made to move the compound was selected as being a much better location in terms of security than the alternative. there was an ongoing discussion between chris and others in the embassy and in tripoli, those going in and out of benghazi about how best to situate our post there. i did see some overnight reporting about a document, i am not sure what it is but i would observe there were a lot of ongoing efforts because it was important that we are constantly asking what was the best place. as you said, in general, chris was committed to being in benghazi and to the location,
the professionals in washington paid close attention to chris's judgment based on his experience and his firsthand knowledge. so we stayed, we we continue to try to upgrade the facility that was attacked. obviously as pointed out, there were inadequacies in the response to the specific kinds of recommendations that we are currently implementing. regarding what i was doing on september 11, i was at the state department all day and late into the night. during most of the day, prior to getting notice of the attack of her compound in benghazi where focused on her embassy in cairo. that was under assault by a group of protesters. we were assessing the security of our embassy which was well defensed.
there were crowds that were intent upon trying to scale the wall and we were in close communication with our team in cairo. i was notified of the attack shortly after 4:00 p.m., over the following hours we are in continuous meetings and conversations both within the department, with our team in tripoli, with the inter- agency and internationally. i instructed our senior department officials and our diplomatic security personnel to consider every option, to just break down the doors of the libyan officials to get as much security support as we possibly could to cornet with them. i spoke to the national security advisor several times. i briefed him on developments. i thought possible support from the white house which they
quickly provided. tom was my first call. i spoke in tripoli to get situation updates. i spoke with former cia director, petronius to confer and coordinate given the presence of his facility which of course was not well-known, but was something we knew and wanted to make sure we were closely lashed up together. i talked with and then libyan national president and pressed him on greater support not only in benghazi but also tripoli. i participated in a secure video conference of senior officials from the intelligence committee, the white house, and dod. we are going over every possible option reviewing all that was available to us. any option we could take. we are reaching out to anyone we could find to get an update on ambassador chris stevens and also our information specialist,
sean smith. it was a constant, ongoing discussion and sets a meeting. i spoke with with president obama later in the evening. to bring him up to date and hear his perspective, obviously we kept talking with everyone during that night, early in the morning on the 12th i spoke with general dempsey again with tom donelan. the two hardest calls i made were to the families of ambassadors stevens and sean smith. i have to say they were extraordinary in their responses and their understanding of the pride we had in both men and the gratitude we had for their service. i would also quickly add,
mr. chairman, while this was going on and we're trying to understand it, get on top of it, we were continuing to face protests, demonstration, violence across the regions as far as indonesia. there are so many protests happening, thousands, thousands of people were putting our facilities at risk so we were certainly very determined to do whatever we could about benghazi. we were relieved when i finally got the last of americans out of benghazi. then we were turning around and dealing with the very serious threats facing so many of our other facilities. >> thank you very much. my time has expired. has expired. >> thank you mr. chairman. madam secretary, i agree with you when people go into the field to do the things they do, they do it knowing the risk. i agreed one of the untold
stories here is the heroic nature of many libyans and what they did to save lives. they risk their lives to save others. i also have to say in reading all of the cables that many of us have done, there are systemic deficiencies. i know you know that. i look forward to just speaking to that for a moment. to my knowledge, no one has been held accountable. our step had a a meeting with one of the state department officials and i hate to use this word in again but it was nothing short of bizarre as they talked about the communications. these officials were screaming out for more security. i'm just wondering if you might mention one reform that would be helpful so that you would have known of the needs there of security that went on done. >> well, obviously i have thought of this almost constantly since that date,
senator because i do feel responsible. i feel responsible for nearly 70,000 people who work for the state department. i take it very seriously. the specific security request pertaining to benghazi were handled by the security professionals in the department. i did not see those requests, they did not come to me, i did not approve them, i did not deny them. that is obviously one of the findings that the ambassadors made. these requests do not ordinarily come to the secretary of state. >> if we could, i respect you you tremendously but we have a short amount of time. they did come into your folks. >> that is right. >> we did have sst people on the ground at no cost to the state department. they were asked to be extended by the ambassador. someone at the state department turn that down. they they are at no charge, 16 officers.
i just wondered what was happening the inside to make sure that never happens again. >> well, several things. not only are we on the path to implement all of the recommendations but we have gone beyond that. we did, immediately to a high threat assessment using dod assets as well as our own. that. that had never been done before. we have asked the congress to help us reallocate funds, the senate has given us that authority, we do not yet have that from the house. we need to get more marine guards, more diplomatic security guards, we can try to put more money into the maintenance, the maintenance, the upgrades, the construction that is needed. i created the first ever, sells like it should have done years ago, but the but the first ever deputy assistant secretary for high threat. i am also recommending there be a regular process that includes the secretary and the deputies in these decisions because nobody wants to sit where i am and have to think now about what
could've, should've happened in order to avoid this. as i have said, we have had 19 arb's, only to have been on classify. one coming out of the east africa bombings where there's full transparency, there is a set of recommendations, many of which would have been implemented. this committee never had a public hearing about the 17 other arb's because there classify. we are putting into action steps that we think will help the next secretary be able to make these decisions, be part of these decisions, have more insight into what is going on, and we would welcome the opportunity to work closely with a subcommittee or a set of members to make sure that is what is happening. >> thank you.
this 19 or 17, none have been fully implemented. >> senator, that is not accurate. i heard you say that when tom burns was here and it shocked me. we went back and did a full and thorough investigation. the vast majority have been implemented. we will give you a report to that effect. to go back to your point senator, if there were an authorization process that is the kind of information that would be shared. i see my former compatriot on the service committee, there is is always an armed service authorization, and their needs always to be a foreign relations committee authorization. >> this is my last question. it is my sense that as a nation we were woefully unprepared for what happened in northern africa in general. i think you share that view and i just wonder, i know you have
made opening comments regarding us leaving in that area but it seems to me that benghazi symbolizes just the woeful unpreparedness that our nation had as it relates to issues in north africa. i hope hope you will address that issue as you move ahead. >> senator, let me briefly address what i think is a key issue for this committee for the ministration, for a country. when i was here four years ago testifying for my confirmation, i don't think anybody thought that qaddafi would be gone leawood be gone, that we would have such a revolutionary change in this region. there were hints of it, several of us said that institutions were sinking in the sand. as i said shortly, there was
some peeling out there but i don't think any of us predicted this. least of all, the people in these countries who are that given a chance to chart their own futures. this is a great opportunity as well as a serious threat or country. i hope we seized the opportunity. it is not going to be easy because these new countries have no experience with democracy, they have no real experience among the leaders in running countries, and doing security. so, yes we now face a spreading jihadist threats. we have driven a lot of the hq operatives out of afghanistan, pakistan, killed killed a lot of them, including bin laden. we have to recognize this is a global movement. we can kill leaders about until we help establish strong emma
craddick institutions, until we do a better job communicating our values and building relationships, we are going to be faced with this level of instability. i do have a lot of thoughts about what more we can and should do given this new reality we face. >> thank you. >> thank you very much. madam secretary, you have represented our country with tremendous strength employees, you you have one us of friends but you have always spoken out forcefully when required. i want to thank you because this is it maybe the last time you come before us that secretary here. i i want to thank you for your advocacy on behalf of women around the globe, you will be sorely missed. i for one hope, not for too long. as you have said, you are heartbroken by those losses in benghazi.
we sought on your face that many times as well, we saw today. rather than pointing to others for their deficiencies you stepped up and you convened an accountability review board to look into this attack in detail. you asked them to tell us the way they saw it. i want to give you my take on that board. i want to go to something senator corrigan said. the first report we got from the intelligence committee about a week or so after was a very confusing, it was not helpful to us. all of us felt that way. i want to speak for myself. the difference between that meeting and the meeting we had with those cochairs, which was also a classified briefing could not have been more different. they were so impressive, there are thorough, they were strong. they did call it they sought, the the way you wanted them to
do. i am grateful that you have unequivocably committed to make sure there recommendations are implemented to the fullest extent. this brings me to a question. as we all know, the house of representatives urged and voted for a cut of $300 million for embassy security. now, maybe it is irrelevant for some here, but i have a message. it does cost money to pay for embassy security, or police on the beat, or military personnel, or police here at the capitol who protect us, which we are very grateful for and we pay for. it does cost money. to me, i was not disappointed to hear that cochair say quote congress must do its part to meet this challenge and provide necessary resources to the state
department to address security risks and reach mission. i think this is a no-brainer. to think that we have a problem with this doesn't make sense. i hope we can work together to get the resources we need for security. this brings me to a question about working more closely with the dod. here it is. have you already engaged with dod to provide additional marines at u.s. facilities to fulfill the arb's recommendations that state and dod work together to provide more capabilities and capacities at higher risk post? before you answer that could you maybe address the issue in molly right now. when you look at molly you see a government that is weak, they do not have the best security, are we working on that?
>> senator, thank you you have raised a lot of important issues. i will try to be as quick as i can and responding. let me start with the budget, this is a bipartisan issue. since 2007, the department has consistently requested graded funding for embassy construction and diplomatic security. graded funding for embassy construction and diplomatic security. with the exception of 2010, congress lee has acted less then what was requested. in 2012 we received received 10% less than requested. over the last two years cost embassy construction, security and maintenance budgets were almost 10% off as well. now the arb as you said has recommended increase facility funny to 2.2 billion 2 billion per year to restore the construction levels called for in the 1998 air b report. the only i've there one that was public. i would go back to something the
chairman said this is the point made in the air b. consistent shortfalls have required the department to prioritize available funding out of security accounts. i'll be the first to say the prioritization process was at times not perfect, as the arb said the funds provided were inadequate. we need we need to work together to overcome that. we are asking for funding for more marine security guard, for refilling the capital account so we can begin to do the kind of upgrade and construction needed. deputy secretary and authorizing staff we sent utters to the house and senate leadership to ask for transfer of authority language. not new money right now but transfer authority language, the senate was good enough to put in the senate version of the sandy supplemental. it did not get in the house side so we are still looking for the house to act. with respect to molly, senator
there was a country that wasn't making progress on their democracy. unfortunately it suffered a military coup, low ranking military officers which threw it into a state of instability. as you know some groups had been in the employ of qaddafi for years, he used them as mercenaries. his fall, came out out of libya bringing huge amounts of weapons that qaddafi have an insurgence liberated as well as others. they came in and at the same time there is a move from al qaeda to establish a base in northern mali. we have been working to try to upgrade security around northern mali among countries. algeria is the only one with any
real ability to do that. most of these countries do not have the capacity to do that. we are not trying to help put together an african force so that african soldiers will be at the front of this fight. the molly and sass the french to come in, obviously rance is one of our oldest allies. we are are trying to provide support to them. this is going to be a very serious, ongoing threat. if you look at the size of northern it is not only does her but is caves, it sounds reminiscent. we are in for a struggle but it is a necessary struggle. we cannot per minute northern mali to become a safe haven. people say to me all the time that a qi am has not attacked the united states. well before 911, 2001 we hadn't been attacked in our homeland sense i guess the war of 1812 and pearl harbor.
you can't say because they haven't done something they are not going to do it. this is not only eight terrorists indicate, it is a criminal enterprise. make no mistake about it, we have got to have a better strategy and i would hope we have not only a strategy that understands making it possible for these governments to defend themselves better for people to understand and agree with us that these terrorists are not in any way represented of their values but that we can bolster democracy and try to give these arab revolutions a chance to succeed. >> thank you. >> mdm. sec. thank you for your service. thank you for the kindness you have shown this committee over the time you have been there. i appreciate your facilitating the meetings. moving to the interest at hand, this morning the national midi
reported a number of the attackers in algeria are people who participated in the attack in benghazi. can you confirm that force this morning? >> senator, i cannot confirm that. i can give you the background i was able to obtain. this information is coming from the algerian government related to the questioning of certain tears they took alive. we don't have any way to confirm it as of yet. i can certainly assure you we will do everything we can to determine that. you may know that dir. mueller was just in the region meeting with leaders. he is very well aware that we have to track every one of these connections, this will be a new thread that will be followed. >> i appreciate that. only one person has been arrested regarding the attack on benghazi that has been released. can you tell he was one that
participated in the l jerry and attack. >> we have no information about that a fact. i think you are referring to the tunisian who appeared in tunisian court upon his release, i called the tunisian prime minister. a few days later we met with the prime minister. we have been assured that he is under the monitoring of the court. he was released because at that time, and dir. mueller mueller and i spoke about this at some length, there was not an ability for evidence to be presented yet that was capable of being presented in an ape open court. we ate our checking on it all the time. >> you just testified in your
prepared remarks he said quote, the very next morning, which would have been wednesday morning, i told the american people that quote heavily armed militants assaulted our compound and vowed to bring them to justice. i'm assuming that you have rocksolid evidence to make such a bold statement at that time. >> well we had four dead people. we had several injured, one seriously still in walter reed. while we do not have the chance yet to meet with any of our returnees, our team in tripoli had received them, gotten medical care for them and send them on. >> a mac. >> ..
picture remains still somewhat complicated and i say that because in the unclassified -- i quote key question surrounding the identity actions and motivations of the perpetrators remain to be determined. i recommend that all members of the staff read the classified version which goes into greater detail. i can't speak to it by the goes into greater detail because there were friday a of potential causes and triggers for this attack or there's evidence that the attacks were deliberate opportunistic and pre-coordinated but not necessarily indicative of extensive planning. and fourth senator i would say i personally was not focused on talking points. as i said i have a very serious threat environment in yemen. it turned out we had people
getting over that wall in cairo until he got them out. we have a serious threat against our embassy. i called the president and tunisian man begged him to send reinforcements which he did to finally save our embassy which could have been a disaster. they burned and trashed our school so i was pretty occupied about keeping our people safe doing what needed to be done and to follow up to benghazi i really don't think anybody in the demonstration was really focused on that so much as trying to figure out what we should be doing and you know i wasn't involved in the talking point process. as i understand it, as i've been told it was a typical interagency process for staff including from the state department all participated and try to come up with whatever was going to be made publicly available and it wasn't an
intelligence product and it's my understanding the intelligence community is working with the appropriate committees to explain the whole process. >> i have some follow-up questions after my time is up but i gather you still stand by the statement you made in the 24 hours that heavily armed militants assaulted our compound you still stand by that? >> absolutely. >> thank you mr. chairman. secretary clinton first congratulations and thank you for your extraordinary service to our country during these past four years as secretary of state. i believe the world is safer today because america is better understood around the world. you have been instrumental in integrating our national security agenda and i thank you for that because i do think it has paid off for the american people. i want to acknowledge a leadership in advancing basic rights. senator vox or acknowledge the
gender issues you have taken on international leadership on and i want to thank you for your help in dealing with corruption particularly with transparency in the extractive industries and the progress we have made in that regard. benghazi was a tragedy. we have all acknowledged that the loss of american lives and we have also acknowledged the bravery of those people on the ground. they did extraordinary service and save lives and that is what they were trained to do and we want to make sure that we acknowledge that. also let me point out you have been open with the committee. we have a hearing on december 20th with the deputies they provided all the information. we thank you very much for that. i want to follow up on one area in northern africa that you point out the risk factors that we currently have in northern africa. algeria is a reminder of the global security concerns. we do not know that senator rich
pointed out the individuals who may have been involved in libya may have been involved and we don't know that but we do know we force with united nations and others that weapons have gotten from libya into algeria which points out or need as we look at transitions occurring in the region. assad is not going to be there we think much longer. do we have a strategy to make sure as we go through transitioning countries that there are weapons are remind both of these weapons could end up marking u.s. u.s. interests and it needs to be part of our strategy to make sure as we support alternative governments and the rebels that there is a strong priority in protecting the source of these weapons not ending up harming americans are harming our interests.
>> senator you're absolutely right. one of the reasons that we and other government agencies were present in can benghazi was exactly that. we had a concerted effort to try to track down and find and recover as many amp pads and other dangerous weapons as possible. libya was before the relation obviously there were additional weapons introduced that the vast majority came out of benghazi houses and as they were saying were liberated and then put on the black market receipts by militias and seas by other groups and have made their way out of libya into other countries in the region and have made their way to seriously believe. it is a red line for this
administration with respect to syria concerning the use of chemical weapons. syria as you probably know has the fourth-largest army before this revolution has a very significant supply of chemical and biological weapons. given the instability in syria right now what we are trying to do is coordinate closely with a number of like-minded nations, neighbors and partners to be able to work to try to prevent those from falling into the wrong hands, jihadist hands, hezbollah hands but also to try to work with the internal opposition for them to understand the dangers that are posed. so this pandora's box if you will of weapons coming out of these countries in the middle
east and north africa is the source of one of our biggest threats. there's no doubt that the algerian terrorists had weapons from libya. there is no doubt that the remnants of aqim have weapons from libya so we just have to do a much better job. the final plan would say about this is we stood up 10 years ago i think a lot of people at the time wondered why would we have another in the world then why in africa? i think we now need to pay much more attention to africom and its capacity. it's based in stuttgart germany for complicated list just to go reasons. a dedicated leader during his time there but we are going to see more and more dependent -- demands on africom and that's something the senate and the house will have to address.
>> senator rubio. >> thank you madam secretary. we all wish this had never happened so this hearing would have would have never happened but we are glad to see you here and wish you all the best. secondarily i want to share the tremendous respect for the hard work and service you have put in by both members of this chamber and the role you have. one of the things that i'm most interested in exploring is how the donations flow within the state department and looking forward how we can prevent this from happening. i was curious about a number of things. first of all were you ever asked to participate in any sort of internal interagency meetings before this attack with regards to the deteriorating security situation in libya? >> senator again i appreciate your kind words and i reiterate my taking responsibility and as i have already said the specific
security request they didn't come to me, i had no knowledge of them. with regards to situations in libya not just eastern libya across libya there were a number of conversations and meetings to try to see what we could do while libya went through this transition from traditional government of interim government to election to try to get in there and help them with security. it was clear that would be one of their highest needs once they finally got stabilized so there were a number of meetings and i personally went to libya in october of 2011. i spoke with the then leadership trait i met with them in an international setting. we sent teams out those civilian and military experts to try to help them. until recently while they were going through their transition it was a very difficult conversation because they didn't
have the authority they thought. we have a long list of ways we are trying help improve security in libya. >> afterward 2011 meeting to this issue come up with regards to the inability of the libyan government to protect our diplomatic institutions, to that issue come up in that conversation? >> we obviously talked a great deal about the deteriorating threat environment in libya. one of the reasons we had our own people on the ground and why we were looking to try to figure out how to better protect benghazi and how to have understanding with those in the annex is because it's the host country responsibility that they were not in a position to do what we would expect from an organized country but they did have the militias and the february 17 brigade had proven
to be responsive in the past prior to 9/11. other militias in tripoli had proven to be responsive. when i landed in tripoli i was met by the militia. that was the welcome i had. these guys in completely in black holding ammunition that was my welcoming party. we knew that we were piecing together what a host nation was not yet able to do. >> then there was another meeting in march of 2012 so just to be clear in october 2011 and again in march of 2012 here with the prime minister and neither one of these meetings was there a specific conversation between you and them with regards to concerns we had not just the deteriorating security situation but the inability of the host country to meet their obligations to provide security? >> of course, absolutely. this was a constant conversation
senator. what i found with the libyans was a willingness but not capacity. you know in tunisia as i told you they had capacity but i had to call and tell them we had to get that capacity out there because they are still trying to figure out how to be a state without being a security state. with cairo we had to call and tell the egyptians get your people out there so with libya it was different. the libyans were very responsive , very willing but no levers to pull in but we have been trying to do and we need your help to help us pay for what we are trying to do, we are trying to help them build a decent security force to try to reign in the militias as best they can. this was a constant conversation. >> report attacking benghazi benghazi what have you done specifically to help them build their security capacity? >> is theirs along with and i'd be happy to provide that to you
because it is filled with training, with equipment, with the kind of planning that they have not done before and i'm happy to send you the details on that senator. >> senator casey. >> adam secretary thank you for being here today to provide this testimony. i'm going to ask you a question that relates to the implementation of the accountability review board recommendations but before i do that i want to express what i think is a widely shared sentiment today both in gratitude and accommodation for your work. we don't have time today to do a full listing of all the achievements that you should get credit for but i will mention maybe two or three and might of the work you have done in some of the work we have done together. it's terribly difficult challenge in dealing with and reducing the flow of calcium
ammonium nitrate which finds its way into the roadside bombs that kill our troops and more popularly as iuds. i want to thank you for the work the work by senator boxer and others on behalf of women throughout the world but also women and girls particularly in afghanistan and maybe thirdly even though we are still in the throes of responding to the challenge in syria the great work you have done and humanitarian assistance and other elements of that strategy that we have worked together on and also not just the approach that the word she spoke today about not retrenching and retreating when it comes to getting that allen's right between engagement and also security are both high priorities. i was struck by and i'm glad you
were so specific on page three of your testimony about the specific implementation. 29 recommendations by the board which now has found its way into or i should say which now is a set of 64 specific action items. you said in your testimony quote only 85% are on track to be completed by the end of march with a number completed already. i would ask you one question about that one follow-up. what if any impediments to implementation do you perceive right now and are their impediments to meeting those deadlines in this committee and the congress can help you by way of meeting that deadline and implementation. >> thank you senator and let me thank you for those three topics he covered and particularly your
very clear focus on the ied problem and they ammonium nitrate problem in pakistan. you and i have gone there and i thank you for making it an issue. let me say we need your help. we need your help number one to hold us accountable, to keep asking whoever sits in his chair or anybody else in the department who have responsibility in the area of what you are doing and how you were doing it and it will help to clear up misconceptions like none of our recommendations have been fully implemented which i know is not the case but will also help drive change. i really believe and authorization process will dramatically change the dynamics and i strongly urge you to try. again i go back to the armed services committee experience with senator mccain over those years.
we had subcommittees. we took it very seriously. we held hearings and we brought people in. we had a three-day markup that was sacrosanct but we also had the quadrennial defense review, qdr for the defense department submitted that it helped provide a framework so when i got to the state department i said there's nothing like that at the state department so i started the first-ever quadrennial diplomacy development review, the first-ever qddr. you can help me continue that and how have the department ask the hard questions. secondly you can help by making sure that they need to come to you with like water the training needs, the budgetary needs, the bureaucratic changes that are needed that you help support that. and certainly we talked a little
bit about the budget and getting that transfer authority to help us with 1.4 billion marine security guards attaching 153 million. we have been closely coordinating with dod. historically marine security guards do not do personal security. they only protect classified material so we are working through what with the guards will do and how we can get more of them and secondly more diplomatic security personnel. 130 million with an additional 155 with related equipment and facility upgrades of 736 million. we are going to have periodic reviews. i started the interagency security assessment team. we are going to start a high threat review by the secretary which had not happened before. we are going to strengthen the
mutual security agreements between the state department and other government agencies when they are not co-located. we had a very good relationship with the annex in benghazi. we help them. they helped us but there wasn't anything -- it was more on the ground working together. it wasn't part of an overall template so they are is a lot that i think we can take from this because i told ambassador pickering and admiral mullen's to put it out there. i want to know more than anybody what happened. don't hold any punches. tell us what the facts are but now we have to act on that. >> thanks very much. senator jones. >> thank you mr. chairman and madam secretary is like to join my colleagues in thanking you for your service sincerely and thank for testifying and glad to hear you are in good health. were you fully aware in real-time and i realized how big
your job is and everything was erupting in the middle east at this time. are you fully aware of -- in real time? >> i was aware of the ones who are brought to my attention. they were part of our ongoing discussion about the deteriorating threat environment in eastern libya. we certainly were very conscious of them. i was assured by our security professionals that repairs were underway, additional security upgrades had taken place. >> thank you. did you see personally the cable on i believe it was august 12 pacific league -- specifically asking for basic reinforcements for the security evacuating or leaving in august? >> d.c. that personally? >> no sir. >> okay when you read the aarp it strikes me how certain the people were that the attack
started at 9:40 in benghazi time. when was the first time he spoke to or have you ever spoken to the evacuees? do you personally speak to those folks? >> i've spoken to one of them but i waited until after they had done their best to geisha because i didn't want to be any issues before they conducted their investigation. the numbers are a little bit hard. >> approximately. >> approximately 25 to 30. >> to anyone in the state department out of those folks shortly thereafter? >> there was discussion going on afterwards but once the investigation started the fbi spoke to that before we spoke to them so other than our people in tripoli which i think you're talking about washington.
>> the point i am making is a simple phonecall to these individuals would have ascertained immediately that there was no protest. this attack started at 9:40 p.m. benghazi time and i time and it was an assault and i appreciate the fact that you call that an assault but i'm going back to ambassador rice purposely with misleading the american public. why wasn't that non-and i appreciate the fact that the transparency of this hearing. why won't read transparent at that point in time? >> first evolved senator i would say once the assault happened and once the gutter people out our most immediate concern was number one taking care of their injuries. as i said i still have an agent at walter reed seriously injured getting them into frankfurt ranch dine and taking care. the fbi going over immediately
to talk to them. we didn't think was appropriate for us to talk to them before the fbi conducted interviews. i think this is accurate sir. i certainly did not know of any report that contradicted the talking points at the time that ambassador rice went on the tv show. you know i just want to say people have accused ambassador rice and the administration of misleading americans. i can say trying to be in the middle of this and understanding what was going on, nothing could be further from the truth. the information developing and was the situation fluid, would we reach conclusions later that weren't reached initially and i appreciate -- the. >> madam secretary t. disagree that a simple phonecall to those evacuees to determine what would happen were ascertained that
there was no protest? that was at these events are made -- information that could have been easily obtained within hours, not days. >> senator when you are in these positions last thing you want to do is interfere with any other process. it's a fact. number two i would recommend highly to revoke what the aarp said about it and classified aarp because even today there are questions being raised. we have no doubt they were terrorists and they were militants and they attacked us and killed our people about what was going on and why they were doing what they were doing. >> again we were misled that there were protests and something sprang out of that. and that was not the fact in the american people could have known that within days. >> with all due respect the fact is we had four dead americans. was it because of protests over
some guys out for a a walk when i decided they would kill some americans. what a difference at this point does it make like it's our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from happening again senator. honestly i will do my best to answer questions about this but the fact is people were trying in real time to get the best information. ip has a process going with the other committees to explain these talking points but you know to be clear from my perspective it is less important today as to why these militants decided they didn't tend to find them and bring them to justice and maybe we will figure out what was going on in the meantime. >> thank you madam secretary. >> thank you very much secretary clinton that i want to echo the praise for my colleagues for your extraordinary service and i
want to thank you for your leadership on benghazi, for taking responsibility for what happened there for initiating an investigation so we would understand what happened, for moving forward to a address another high-risk area and for all of your efforts to implement the recommendation of the accountability review board. thank you, that's the kind of leadership we want to see across our government. i want to first go back to what i thought you had said about still looking for the funding to be transferred, the 1.3 billion 1.3 billion. >> four. >> 4 billion to the oh account to address security threats not just in libya but around the world and do i understand that we still have not had that money transferred and so that means the 553 million former marine
security guards and diplomatic security, 691 million for security installation that is all on hold and so we can't move forward until that has been improved? >> now we have to start over because it was in the senate version of sandy. it was not put in the house version of sandy so no we cannot move money we are to have to address the needs and efficiencies that the arp has recommended we do. >> well i would just echo the comments have been made already by this committee and by you that this is action we need to get moving on immediately because we still have people at risk around the world and we need to take the action that's going to ensure their security. i would certainly urge the chairman and ranking member to move the committee to do everything we can to make this happen. i would go back to something
that the secretary said at the hearing on september 20 because i asked him about the cooperation between the department of defense and state and what the situation was on the ground before the benghazi attack in terms of the placement of our military in the region. he talked about the unprecedented cooperation between state and defense in the response to benghazi but i wonder if you could talk about how we ensure that this is a standard way of doing business and that we are acting in cooperation when we are looking at the threat facing us particularly as we look at northern africa and across the middle east. >> senator that's a really important and timely question because certainly our cooperation around this crisis was exemplary.
the president told the secretary and the chairman to do everything they possibly could to spare no effort or resource and we had a very good interagency response that the arp found that the fact is we have to look closely now at what more state and dod can do together to prepare for contingencies such as this. i think it's a challenge that needs to be taken up because in iraq and now in afghanistan are diplomats and our military work closely together. as we saw in iraq the military, that was putting a lot of burden on our civilians in iraq that are difficult for us to be able to address because we were lied on our dod colleagues were so much. similarly as we are starting to look at the drawdown in afghanistan what kind of
civilian presence are we going to be able to leave there and what can deal with d. do to help us to try to determine what that can and should be and i think you get a sense of the challenge of this from a statement that admiral mullen made. he said and i quote on the night of the attack benghazi in tripoli and washington coordinated effectively with each other. they looked at the military runway. the interagency response was time inappropriate but there was simply not enough time for u.s. military forces to admit a difference. having said that admirable -- admiral mullen goes on it is not reasonable to tether u.s. forces at the ready to respond to protect every high-risk post in the world. we have to look at this from the state department and the dod perspective and we don't have assets of any significance right now on the african continent. we are only building that up and
so what do we need in africa? what country will welcome us there, give us our military and civilian teams a good safe base out of which to operate so if we are focusing just on africa and particularly north africa right now there's got to be a great deal of planning and coordination between dod and africom in the state department and the rest of the administration. >> senator flake. >> thank you madam secretary. thank you for your testimony and thank you for your service. traveling over 1 million miles in more than 100 countries those of us who haven't done it can now appreciate how difficult that is and the commitment that you have had to it over the years and i thank you. with regards to the appearance of dr. rise on the morning shows you mentioned you did not select or. were you consulted in that decision? >> no.
it would not be in any way unusual for ambassador rice to represent the administration on a foreign relations issue. >> i don't think so either but after she testified it was clear that what she testified to was a variance with a lot of medications from the state department and a lot of the information that had been gathered and things that have been said by yourself and others at the state department. can you enlighten us a bit on the discussion that went on at the state department after that testimony? these are professionals that you oversee that do a lot of hard work to give analysis in this kind of an assessment. what you said was clearly a variance with a lot of the research and analysis that had gone on about the nature of these attacks.
what discussions were had at the state department after this testimony? >> i cannot speak to any conversation i specifically had because the conversations were ongoing before and after ambassador rice's appearance on the sunday talk shows and we did not conclude finally that there were no protests at all until days after the attack. maybe it was in abundance of caution. maybe it was trying to make sure we didn't step on anybody's toes while we were gathering information. maybe it was because the i.t. was still looking at all of their sources and having different threats coming in but as the arp said then today the motivation, the actions before they went on to the compound all
of that is not nailed down. i think we were trying very hard to provide information and maybe may be one of the lessons learned here is just withhold. don't say what you don't know for sure until it's finally decided that that's not who we are as americans and public officials. we get out there and we say here's what we think happened and i think we all wish that nobody had ever and anyway raised doubts but certainly ambassador rice and all the other administration officials were speaking of what had been determined where the most acceptable talking points. >> i think we know now that the talking points we don't exactly know where they were changed or how they were changed but they were changed or altered and i think we can all concede that we were not given a clear picture of what went on.
>> but senator we didn't have a clear picture. i wish i could sit here today and tell you within a day or within a week of september 20 became a peer and we had a clear picture. we did not have a clear picture and if you wish to fault the administration it is that we didn't have a clear picture and we probably didn't do as clear a job explaining that we did not have a clear picture until days later creating what i think are legitimate questions. i understand. i've been on the other side of the table. i understand trying to figure out what was going on and why we were told this, that in and the other but i can only assure you that as the information came to light and as people thought it was reliable. >> in the remaining seconds left you mentioned many the recommendations have been put in place and there are protocols to make sure that security is not
adequate that we mubarak diplomats and others to where they are more secure or whatever but let me just say they were protocols in place before this. there were tripwires that we tripped and the actions that were outlined to be taken were not taken. how can we be assured here that the new protocols that are in place with these new recommendations being implemented will be followed or adhere to because they clearly were before. >> well senator i want to make clear that no one in the state department, the intelligence community, and the other agency ever recommended that we close than dotsie. we were clear-eyed about the threats and dangers as they were developing in eastern libya and in benghazi but there was no
decision made and nothing that prompted such a decision. now sitting here today we have probably at least 20 other posts that are under a serious threat environment as i speak to you. we are working with the other agencies in our government some of whom are the co-located with us, others nearby. we are constantly assessing. and sometimes we get it wrong but it's rare that we get it wrong. this is one of those terrible tragic times when you know there was an assessment shared by the ambassador and shared by others that turned out not to take into account the militants attacking that night. so i could tell you there are things like tripwires but what we are going to try to do is
elevate the discussion in the decision-making so there's not any doubt that everybody is on the same page, that we are not dissing information. we are not husbanding resources and thereby making less than optimal decisions. that's what we are going to try to institutionalize going forward. >> dinky. >> i want to thank senator menendez for chairing this critically important hearing and thank you secretary clinton for testifying today. i deeply regret you work able to appear before because of her illness and i'm thrilled to see you have made a recovery. we share jointly to a trip to library and they gave me an opportunity as a freshman senator to see up close your remarkable skills and stamina in your determination. my view your leadership restores
america's credibility builds bridges for international partners and on the hill where your leadership is seen perspective on both sides of the island has been widely praised. well senator kerry has my full confidence. he said in her opening statement you are determined to leave the state department and our country safer stronger and more secure and in my view because of your leadership they are. today we continue consideration of the recommendations of the advisory viewport which found security was quote grossly inadequate to deal with the attack but did face in benghazi. the mistakes that were made were simply unacceptable and i'm pleased that the state department has begun to properly implement the board's recommendations thinks your leadership rate i know you agree massive security failures have cost the lives of more brave americans. it simply cannot happen again and i look forward to working with my colleagues on this committee and a review of the
resources needed and state department structure to ensure that we do better to protect our diplomats and other americans who rely on us each and everyday. i'm particularly pleased to have drawn the links between the tragic incident and in benghazi the recent terrorist incident in algeria and the unfolded challenges in mali. i chaired a hearing on molly december 5 and i've been impressed with your engaged leadership on angela -- algeria and i welcome your testimony today on how you see the regional threats from aqim and how you see the consequences of this recent incident in algeria and what role you think there is in the united states in supporting the current actions among different somali military and the need for our ongoing insurance investment to restore democracy in mali and restore
development in some prospects moving forward and how you think we can ensure state and defense are coordinated through africom in west and north africa going forward? >> senator i appreciate greatly your attention to africa and i think you are going to be viewed as quite the prophetic. it will be at the leave a continuing set of challenges. you mentioned some of them but by no means we got to boko haram and nigeria closing the threat of instability to one of the most important oil-producing nations in the world something that's very important to our country. we have got other unrest and challenges coming down the west coast of africa but we also have a success story, at least a hope
for beginning success story in somalia and what did the united states do there? when i became secretary of state i resubmitted america money to the amazon forces and we work to train ugandan tempera descend others and we worked with the kenyans. we worked with the djibouti's. it took time. there were no shortcuts that we had the boots of our american soldiers in the boots of american diplomats on the ground break i visited one of the training camps in uganda and what we have to do is recognized we are in for a long-term struggle here and that means we have got to pay attention to places that historically we have not chosen to our had to. so i would hope that this committee can make the case to the rest of the congress. we are now looking at troops coming from other neighboring
african countries. we can't just send them into him molly. they don't have the training to do that. we are going to have to work with other parties to train them and equip them and sustain them just like we did with the troops in somalia. four years ago al-shabaab was one of the biggest threats not only to east africa but to the united states. we have a chance to really continue on a positive track there but it didn't happen by accident. american money american know-how american experience and we have to make the decision we are going to do the same and north africa as well. >> thank you madam secretary and i certainly look or to continue to get your advice direction and encouragement as i work with my colleagues here to ensure the same sort of success going forward in west africa. thank you for your testimony. >> thank you madam secretary. wonderful to see you in good health.
we thank you for your outstanding and dedicated service to this nation and we are proud of you. all over the world that i traveled you are viewed with admiration and respect. months after they have been gussied tragedy where four brave americans died there of many questions that are unanswered and the answer is frankly that you have given this morning are not satisfactory to me. were you in the president made aware of the classified cable from chris d. vinci said the united states consulate in benghazi could not survive a sustained assault. numerous warnings including personally for me about the security were unanswered or unaddressed. it took a "cnn" reporter looking for a consulate to find chris
stevens last -- when were you made aware of that cable? when you -- when rieu i made aware of the assassination attempts and the closing of a consulate there? and what actions were taken? what was the president's activities during that seven hour period? on anniversary of the worst attack in american history, september 11 we didn't have department of defense forces available for seven hours. two brave americans died. with all these warnings we didn't have a single department of defense asset apparently available to come to the rescue. i categorically reject your answer to senator johnson about well we didn't ask these survivors who were flown to ramzi and the next day that this
was not a spontaneous demonstration. to say that an investigation was going on, the american people deserve to know answers and they certainly don't deserve false answers. the answers that were given to the american people on september 15 by the ambassador of the united nations were false in fact contradicted by the classified information which was kept out of the secretary of the united nations report and by the way in the president's words had nothing to do with benghazi which questions why it was sent out. why is it that these administrations still refuses to provide the full text of e-mails regarding the deletion of references to al qaeda and terrorism in the talking points? why do we care clinics the classified information had been included it gives an entirely different version of events to
the american people. go to the american people and tell them what happened and you ought to have your facts straight including the ambassador said quote al qaeda is decimated and our consulates and embassies are secure. so here we are four months later and we still don't have the basic information. if you want to go out and tell the american people what happened you should at least have interviewed the people who were there instead of saying no we couldn't talk to them because an fbi investigation was going on. and by the way as i said at the time i just happened to be on one of those talk shows people don't bring rpgs and mortars to spontaneous demonstrations. that's a fundamental. of course the president continue to say days afterwards, september the 12th made a
reference on "60 minutes" too early to know september 20 on the division we are still doing an investigation september 24 on a few we are still doing an investigation. the president of the united states as late as september 242 weeks later did not acknowledge that this was an act of terror conducted by people who were at least somehow connected to al qaeda. finally madam secretary i strongly disagree with your depiction of what we did after gadhafi fell. we did not provide the security that was needed. we did not help him with border security. we did not give them the kind of assistance that would have been necessary to help dismantle these militias that still to this day remain a challenge to democracy in libya and freedom.
you knew chris stevens very well and i knew him very well. i knew him on july 7 when i went to libya to observe the elections and at that time on july 7 he expressed to me his deep and great concerns about security particularly in benghazi and he continued to communicate with the state department and i don't know who else were in those cables of his deep concern about the security and the need for additional assistance. i will argue with facts that after that event took place after the fall of gadhafi he saw the footprint was partially to some degree responsible for the tragedy that took place. the american people and the families of these four brave americans still have not gotten the answers that they deserve. i hope that they will get them. >> senator i understand you're
very strong feelings. you knew chris and you were a friend of chris. you were one of the staunchest supporters of the effort to dislodge gadhafi and tries to give the libyan people a chance and we just have a disagreement. we have a disagreement about what did happen and when it happened with respect to explaining the sequence of events. we did get to talk to the agents will make got back to this country. we did so and it was not before september 15. we have no access to the surveillance cameras or weeks which help to answer a number of questions but with respect to helping the libyans and that also goes to the question senator rubio asked we will provide a list of everything we were doing and were attempting
to do but i will also tell you that since march 2011 congressional holds it in place and programs for many months for eight to libya. we had frequent congressional complaints, why are we doing anything for libya. it's a wealthy country. as oil and disagreement from some sources that we should never have sent part of any u.n. mission in libya. currently the house has holds on bilateral security assistance, on other kinds of support for antiterrorism assistance so we have got to get our act together between the administration and the congress. this is a priority and if we are serious about trying to help this government stand up security and deal with what is a very dangerous environment from east to west than we have to work together. so i hope that we can have the kind of discussion where we can
agree on certain approaches that will make a difference. again i would urge you look and read the classified and unclassified versions of the arp to try to do with the very questions that you and senator johnson are raising, the timing of it and the like but i also hope we are looking forward because right now libya is still dangerous. it is still in a very unstable status and whatever we can do for them i would agree we need to do it and get out there and start delivering. >> thank you madam secretary. >> madam secretary i want to try to keep you in a certain timeframe and you have to go before the house. i want to have an opportunity for every member to ask questions so i appreciate your thorough and thoughtful answers but to some degree it will dictate your own timeframe.
>> madam secretary, thank you for being here. it's a little more than four years ago a number of your colleagues myself included encourage you to take on this responsibility believing you would have a profound impact on the world and the diplomacy in the united states and you have. thank you so much for all you have done. i also want to say a word on behalf of ambassador rice and extraordinary individual who has served this country well. i think some of the criticism that was heaped on her was unfair and not reflecting the fact that she was reporting the best information she had available at the time. as you said more information came available and it was dutifully reported. they do want to make one point for the record here about whether the american people are told everything right away, in the right way so that they can
be fully informed and i would like to refer to five words for them to reflect on. iraqi weapons of mass distraction. we were told by every level of government here there were iraqi weapons of mass distraction that justified a war. invitation of the united states. we are still searching for those weapons. they didn't exist. thousands of americans lost their lives. we could have a hearing on that. the point i'm trying to get to is to extraordinarily talented individuals admiral mullen and maybe one of the best diplomats of our time ambassador pickering did a thorough review here and found shortcomings in our protection of our people overseas and reported them honestly. you not only initiated that review committee accepted its findings in their totality. no coverup, an attempt to be
totally honest to make sure tragedies like this never occur again. the second planet like to make is this. some on the committee have criticized the notion that this is about money. they might argue you can't solve a problem by throwing money at it. madam secretary they problem by throwing money at it unless the problem is lack of money and what i understand he did testify as to how testify as you have fast as congress for the authority to transfer existing funds to protect ambassadors and diplomatic personnel around the world and you have been refused by the house of representatives. they will not give these the authority to even take existing funds. if i'm not mistaken in a few weeks or department is going to face sequestration and they not only want additional funds we will cut some $2 million when it comes to construction of facilities to protect people who
represent the united states overseas and cut money for the individuals necessary to protect those same diplomats. so i would like you to comment, how can we keep our commitment to be a leader in the world and the area of diplomacy, statecraft, to avoid the necessity of war if we don't get the most basic resources to your department which commands as i understand it 1.5% of the federal budget. >> actually is less than one but let's not quibble. look i am well aware that there are deficiencies and inadequacies in the department. i went about doing what i could in the four years i had through the qdr process, through creating some additional incentives and changes in culture to try to assist everybody in the state department and usaid to do as
much as they could with what i there they had. we were never going to reach parity with the defense department. we were always going to be one 12th or less of the budget and that was fine but to do what we can but at the same time we have asked for the funds we think we need to be able to fill fill the mission you have described senator durbin. we need the help of this committee. i am one who believes that we have to both walk and chew gum at the same time. we have to deal with our own economy and our fiscal situation. that is a given because that is the source of our strength in our capacity but we also have to be smart about making the right investments in policy and development to try to solve problems and prevent them.
i have outlined what should be a no-brainer to let us have the permission to take money we are to have, we are not asking for more money and put it to work with what the arp told us to do and look at the budget as we move forward. sequestration will be very damaging to the state department and usaid if it does come to pass because it throws the baby out with the bath. other programs that we could reduce, make more efficient? >> guest: and that's part of what i've been trying to do is to push that forward and that's what the qdr process was about but there are also a lot of very essential programs for security of our personnel in dangerous places that we can afford to cut more of so i hope we get the transfer authority and have a sensible budget discussion going forward. >> thank you. senator barrasso. stan thank you mr. chairman and
madam secretary want to thank you for your incredible commitment to this country as first lady and a member of this body as secretary of state and i have seen you work yourself to exhaustion. not to your own benefit but to the benefit of this country in and the country is grateful for that. i agree we need to make sure that something like this never happens again and i've looked at it like the challenger explosion where we lost the severn -- seven astronauts. we didn't see it coming that we could have seen it coming and should have seen it coming. as you said you never saw the security requests. vice president biden in the presidential debates said no one told us. ..
>> senator, we had a security presence that was naturally reinforced with the index - - with the and next with previous instant -- incident with the red cross and others what we have done is even though there was the back and forth with the cables and the discussion we had five with the unprecedented attack with the regional security a officer testified it was not expected even though that night there was the requisite number we can get
my eric in the of back-and-forth to prevent future tragedies and attacks they does want to look at the facts to do an excellent job then tell all of us that is our highest responsibility. >> the president vowed to bring to justice to kill the people in benghazi but we ask the question to perpetrate the recent attacks in algeria and how
are people brought to justice? i don't know that i would assume about the progress of their investigation just a few days and then go from the director from the north africa and they are following promising leads to put together cases but what they're trying to determine the president said they would respond but that we have some very good examples
does not divert attention. >> in light of those terrorist activities in north africa would you characterize that that al qaeda has been decimated? >> it has been. in afghanistan and the borders area and has taken now to zero whole cadres of leadership now we see those who have migrated back to other parts of the world for they have come from poorly with the jihadist syndicate like al qaeda other issues different names they are
terrorists from extremists, to overthrow existing governments with the pakistan and afghanistan region we do have to content with the wannabes and the affiliate's going forward. >>. >> eidenshink you have been n a dedicated server for the country if your travel around the world the 1 million miles you have visited with they have a secretary of state and i
have seen firsthand the difference it makes to have you there on the ground so first of all, the key for that and it does take a toll the you are incredibly dedicated to that. it is good to see you here in good health and smiling and engaging with all of us. i will add to the list with the senators coming down the line to talk about your accomplishments and though previously i talk about cookstoves which i know is one of your initiatives mitt is an example to pick something where people round the world with the up-to-date cookstove you could make a difference on
their health so i would add that to the list that has been given here today with thoughtful policy-making on your part. one of the findings the board made, the total elimination of risk is a nonstarter for diplomacy for the government to be present were stability is profoundly lacking with host governments support is sometimes minimal or nonexistent. and this underscores the difficulty to find the right balance between engagement and security. with the idea we should reprogram to get back together but my question
here revolves around a the high rest post you use the term to have 20 is this how many we have around the world? >> it is a sliding scale. it is constantly evolving. >> can you give us a range? >> i would like to give you that in a classified document title think it helps us 2.0 the ones that we think better of the west at risk and perhaps in a secondary category so we operate in places where we
have custody until stream landed is a difficult decision if that mission continues. we rely on the security professionals to implement the procedures and protocols and and i have to say they do a tremendous job. the vast majority of cases of assassinations stopped or the daily efforts the depp diplomatic security professionals are engaged in. i have a lot of confidence that we will do what we can to make sure they get the support within our bureaucracy they deserve on the ground to protect our diplomats.
>> i want to obey that time in its the because you have to go to the house but could you answer for the record, does it make sense in some of these hybrids -- high risk areas we consolidate with more secure areas and then be in a situation rare our personnel would be safer? and asking you to answer that now i want others to question but if you to give us an answer for the record. >> i will do that and one of the recommendations out of east africa was to do that ended is done in the vast majority of cases what is called colocate but we're looking to see what we can do.
>> thank you for appearing secretary clinton glad to see your health is improving but what disappointed me the most about the original 9/11 nobody was fired peyser dash errors in those need to be replaced and fired and no motor in a position to be in these judge recalls so we have a review board that finds 64 things to change a lot were common sense and should be done but it is a failure of leadership they were not done in advance with four lives cost. and let your accepting responsibility ultimately leading you except culpability for the worst tragedy since the 11th and i really mean that i found you did not read the cables from ambassador stevens and benghazi i would have relieved you for riposted is inexcusable. we can understand you're not reading of every cable may be or not aware from the
ambassador in vienna that asks for $100,000 for the electrical charges station or maybe your department spent $100,000 going to indy on a promotional tour but you might be aware of the 80 million spent on the consulate that will never be built and it is inexcusable you did not know about this or read these cables but anybody's estimation with the house to have been one of the hottest of hot spots of the robot to know the request for security cost these people their lives. they could have been saved had someone ben available or more on top of the job. i don't suspect you of bad motives the board said there were not willfully negligent and a suspect your motives to serve your country but a
failure of leadership not to be involved. the failure of leadership not to know these things would is good or accepting responsibility because no one else is. there is a certain of the culpability to laugh when ashley worst tragedy to send 11. is the u.s. involved with procuring of weapons or transfer to buy or sell to turkey out of libya? >> to turkey? i will have to take that for the record. >> it has been in news reports ships are leaving from the dna have weapons so is that aniks involved in ruth they transfer to any other countries? >> you'll have to direct it
to the agency that ran the annex. >> you say you don't know? >> i don't have information on that with respect to personnel, a first, that is why we have independent people who review the situation in all four individuals had been removed from their job to be placed on the ministry did leave what we go through the personal process ambassador and admiral lot highlighted the reason it is complicated because under federal statutes unsatisfactory leadership is not grounds for breach of duty they did not find the four individuals breached their duty so i have submitted
legislation to fix this problem. >> but the review board has one -- all these recommendations that has set this up that never should have been sent in there without the military guard issue be an embassy like baghdad in a war zone under military guard significantly under defense department command and of think the state department is capable to be in a war zone another tragedy could happen around the world. somebody needs to make an executive decision and take leadership you should not send them in without marines to guard records not people or the same type of the embassy's staff that you haven't paris is inexcusable. >> today i am here to answer
questions the best i can. i am the secretary of state made the level of responsibility for the failures was at the assistant secretary level and below. the administration send officials to the hell more than 30 times we have venice transparent as we can't obviously we will continue to brief you any and all questions going forward. the reason we put the review board to take it out of politics and partisanship and accusations to put into the hands the people who have no stake in the outcome. tell the world might open is
that i believe in transparency in to take responsibility and i have done so and i hope we can see a good working relationship going forward. >> secretary clinton i approached during with some degree of sadness my firsthand your last the live appreciative of your service you have done such credit to this nation and i am sorry to see you go you will continue to give as good counsel and advice in the coming years. some people that want to call the worst tragedy since 9/11 misunderstands the nature of 4,000 americans
lost under 10 years of iraq fought under false pretenses also because we had a misunderstanding of what we could do or manage in the region in what was under our control. so my question is whether the expectations going forward in north africa? you reference this of what is under our control. one of the criticisms we didn't have a full understanding of a complicated set of allegiances between the jihadist group's and i worry during this retrospectively we give the impression we can know all and see all and control all to stand up to
what we may need. it is an open-ended question as we move forward that will be spending a lot more time on africa or north africa twitter the exhortations as to what we can control or what changes we need to make to have a more solid footprint for those are willing to help us and intervention with this complicated landscape. >> you'll make an excellent member of this committee on the question of will depart question of a raise is now part of the challenge that we face. we're in a new reality. trying to make sense of changes nobody predicted
that we have to live with. i cannot do justice to the important issues you have highlighted but first, be honest with ourselves avoided turning to read into a political football but to say this is unprecedented, and we don't know what will happen in the new revolutionary environment across north africa and the middle east east, let's see what lessons we can learn, what is applicable and bring people together who have the open discussion that used to be the hallmark of this committee in the senate. people used to have hearings did and does have a mission led dash officials, and go
on fidel into what works and what doesn't bring in the outside experts. over the last week's high poll ratings from very conservative in liberal commentators who have reached the same conclusion we have to approach with humility but we have some assets of redeploy them right to helping to rebuild security is the central. it took a decade in colombia who didn't directly end as a partner in somalia. let's be smart and learned what to be transferred and with the new chairman and
ranking member conversations we could play a role to answer your questions to put forth a policy going from administration to administration but it would be steady with colombia or the cold war we have more assets than anybody in the world but we have gotten off track figuring out how to utilize them. >> madam secretary i also regret our overlap will be so brief the country is at its strongest when we balance military with economic strength and moral example i cannot think of a person to exemplifies that balance as well as you do and i appreciate that.
a few detailed questions in the unclassified version fabrics comment december 2011 the undersecretary approved a one-year continuation that was never a consulate or never formally notified. why wasn't this mission notified? is that a common practice to that lack of notification had any connection with the week response on the 11th and are there any changes to the idea of special missions not notified to the host government? >> congratulations to you and welcome to this committee. united states notified the specific names of those
serving in aaa end benghazi that did not that was not the ruling is but the capacity for the first time chris stevens arrived he replied not on an the libyan government will security but the february 17 brigade with private security contractors. there was no affect on anything from a libyan government related to that but we do think it needs to be looked at going forward. the arb made an important point the temporary nature
did prove to be confusing to people down the chain responsible reading those cables i have to confess i do not read all of them that come in and that is why we have a huge work force of people letter given responsibility and expected to carry that forward. to designate it as temporary in the arb findings did cause an extra level of uncertainty. the chairman said there has been the husband resources to try to be as careful to spend money as possible but then add to that it was temporary probably did the to confusion we lot -- relator saw played out but not the status for the
libyan government. >> cal, is it to rely on non-governmental security as it was with the brigades and thank god the? >> it is very common. we employ private security guards at a high number of post the go to the embassy in baghdad or call or any high for a places you'll see private security guards. because of problems with the contract that came to light there were private security guards protecting experts many countries put very stringent requirements and in libya of the transitional
government unless they approve them they approve this company that was joint libyan british organization but we use private guards because historically the marines do not direct personnel. their job is to take care of classified material and destroy that we did not have that at benghazi it is unfortunate we evacuate the americans and other classified the material that we had no classified material. there will be an effort because of the work to sort this out so everybody knows the protocol in the rules to act accordingly.
>> madam secretary thank you for your thorough and forthright answers. i understand we can welcome you one more time tomorrow as introduce senator kerry to the committee. there are several tech -- takeaways that are incredibly important. we have to look at the totality of the threat environment rather than a single credible threat with the protection of the foreign service personnel moving in that direction. those that have responsibility for security matters as a there looking and a horizontal nature.
we do forget about resources the secretary gates used to argue more people in military beds and in the entire foreign service surely we can find the funds to protect our diplomats that serve on the front line and i am concerned when the arb says the state department has been engaged for struggle to carry on his work that has conditioned the thinking of some it is imperative for the state department to be mission driven particularly in risky parts of the world. i look forward to really working with the ranking member to get that transfer authority within the budget is about taking money that is already appropriated you have the ability to start
working to protect our people as robust as we can and failure is up for judgment on this congress if we cannot transfer authority. a lot has been made about the question what was said or not but i think about that in the context there are lessons to be learned there as well to learn about the tragedy or an incident you want to get an aberration as quickly as possible but what we don't know is equally as important maybe we should know before we speak is important that would have been important when we were told their weapons of mass destruction in iraq as someone who voted
against the war, i look at benghazi as a tragedy. as you lose those lives in iraq thousands have been injured to increase the influence of iran i think for my own personal perspective was truly a tragedy so there are lessons to be learned if there are questions for the committee for answers by close of the day tomorrow. thank you for your parents and your service. >> i want to add three more takeaways alluding to the issues at the state department and the white house deal with i think this
committee will be useful to set up a long-term explanation of our national interest looking long term term, we have talked extensively the importance to have a full authorization would be very helpful for people like you to come in for a short period of time to set those priorities. so that you embrace and that this committee has never done and we live in a world where al qaeda will be a threat in the north africa for years to come and we have to have a policy to realize that. cannot nice things to be set tomorrow but thank you. >> we are entered. [inaudible conversations]
>> to be honest i was under i was traveling and was not in a senior role and when you travel all the time i got to know the people that traveled letter i got to know her pretty well because she would come back to talk to us that i did have the same sources of the campaign of the high-level letter had now whether that is of the times were in a more senior role.
[inaudible conversations] this afternoon. i want to thank united nations for hosting today's even to put the challenge of gender equality front and center on the international agenda per crime especially pleased to have some new leaders year from the private sector going shoulder to shoulder with advocates. 20 years ago this was so
lonely struggle today we mark the progress made since the community gathered in beijing to declare with one voice demonstrates for women's rights. because of legal protection we can say there has never ben a better time in history to be born female but as the comprehensive report makes clear when it comes to the full presentation of women and girls we're not there yet. this remains the great unfinished business of the 21st century in my passion burns as brightly today as it did 20 years ago. i want to comment on the
matter regarding iran. the president and his team in the midst of intense negotiation to close off the pathways to a nuclear bomb to give us unprecedented access and insight into the iran nuclear program. reason all people can disagree exactly what it will take to accomplish this objective and we must judge any agreement on its merits. but the recent letter was out of step with the best tradition of leadership what was the purpose of this letter? either they were trying to be helpful