US Deployed Special Forces Across Northern Africa Embassies Ahead of Benghazi

Advance Teams Were Deployed Months Before Attack

The Obama Administration continues to insist, in the face of mounting evidence to the contrary, that there was no way they could have seen the attack on the Benghazi Consulate coming. Yet they clearly saw something coming.

Officials are now admitting that the White House signed off on a plan a year ago to build up special forces task forces around northern Africa, and had been deploying troops at embassies across the region for months in the lead-up to Benghazi.

They say the network of troops was “too new” to react to the Benghazi attack, but concede that the build-up was entirely a function of concerns that al-Qaeda was posing a growing threat across the region. Congress is also blasting the administration for not escalating into the region sooner and with more troops, arguing this might conceivably have prevented the attack.

Lost in the entire discussion is that the whole reason al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the north African version, is getting so much stronger is because the US attacked Libya last year, imposing a regime change that led to widespread looting of advanced weapons. AQIM openly bragged that they were the “main beneficiaries” of the regime change in Libya.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.