U.S. Hired Flashlights and Batons to Protect Ambassador Chris Stevens in Benghazi

The murdering of Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya last month is still an issue of great controversy.  Some claims have been made that the Benghazi Consulate had requested armed security, but the State Department is neither denying nor verifying those claims.

However, information has come out that the State Department hired the British security firm Blue Mountain to handle the security at the Benghazi Consulate.  The Blue Mountain security personnel assigned to the Consulate were well armed to repel all attacks with their flashlights and batons.  Yep!  That’s right.  They had no other weapons with which to protect the Americans inside the Consulate compound.

It has been learned that Blue Mountain hired around 20 locals to help screen visitors and with patrolling the grounds.  The screening of the locals was minimal at best and most received very little training.  They have also experienced a high turnover rate among the locals hired to help with security.

Back in April, one of the local hires that had been recently fired along with one still on Blue Mountain payroll were suspected of tossing a homemade bomb over the fence and into the Consulate grounds.  They were both questioned and released and no charges have ever been filed.

In the past couple months the violence in and around Benghazi had been on the increase.  Even though Muammar Gaddafi’s rule had ended the year before, there was still a great deal of political unrest in Libya.  One would think that increased security measures would have been taken to match the increased threat risk of the area.

I have two nephews who served as U.S. Embassy guards while in the military.  One was stationed in South Korea where tension always seems high and they always carried firearms with live ammo because of the threat risk.  Everywhere the U.S. Ambassador to South Korea went, he was accompanied by an armed military escort.

With the tensions still so high in Libya, why wasn’t Ambassador Stevens also protected by an armed military escort instead of by a bunch of locals and Brits wielding flashlights and batons.  What were they supposed to do, shout ‘Stop or I’ll shine you with my flashlight?’

The more you read about the Blue Mountain security measures taken at the Consulate in Benghazi, the more it makes you wonder what they did to earn the $783,284 they were paid.  One thing is for certain.  Our country failed to take proper measures to protect the American staff inside the Consulate in Benghazi.  I just hope and pray that they have learned from this debacle and take measures to properly protect our embassy workers throughout the world.