August 19, 2013
The Honorable John Boehner
Speaker of the House
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, D.C. 20515
Dear Mr. Speaker:
Tyrone Woods and Glenn Doherty did not die in vain. We urge you to pursue release of the electronic communications from Benghazi so that we may learn more about their extraordinary acts of heroism.
Through their undaunted valor in fighting to the death over a significant period of time, these two former Navy SEALS highlighted the lack of a U.S. military response. In the Battle of Benghazi, Tyrone Woods and Glenn Doherty, along with others, by courageously engaging the enemy over a significant period of time, made a supreme, selfless sacrifice. The American people need to know all of the facts and hear for themselves the communications made during this dramatic, fatal battle.
It has been widely reported that electronic communications were being made in the clear during the attack, and that private cell phones were used in some instances. The Battle of Benghazi “comms,” if ever made public, will allow the American people to judge for themselves the performance of all involved.
Combat, because until it ends, doesn’t end. All that we know currently, more than ten months after the attacks, is that President Obama went to bed while the fighting was still raging. Even while he traveled to a fundraiser the next day, a counterattack would have still been tactically and strategically critical to deliver.
The tactical consequences of no counterattack are long lasting, not a brief, “what difference does it make” event. The message sent is that terrorism can succeed. US reinforcements could have killed or captured those involved in the attack. This was not a police action with a law court in prospect. Benghazi unfolded on the world stage, where failure to succeed is a key factor shaping what our adversaries believe they can do next with impunity.
In addition, the U.S. could have had a rallying point for saving those Libyans working with us, whose fate is still unknown. US insertion forces could have secured any classified information and communication gear and collected, if possible, any remaining cell phones to protect social networks as well as collected forensic evidence for the FBI, and US and Allied intelligence communities.
At Benghazi, the U.S. lost the first set piece battle against Al-Qaeda. With no counter-attack, the enemy held its objective. This is a classic definition of a military defeat and one which will have dangerous consequences for the future.
We have yet to know why no adequate military response or rescue mission was ordered, and we do not know who prepared dishonest talking points, blaming an obscure video and a spontaneous protest that did not happen.
We strongly support Representative Frank Wolf’s bill to create a Select Committee, as the best means to get to the bottom of this scandal and to render needed accountability and answers to critical questions swirling around this scandal. We urge you urgently to stand up this Committee to determine the truth about Benghazi, and foremost, in so doing, to secure public release of the critical communications from the ground as Woods and Doherty fought to their deaths, which the American people have every right to hear.
The Honorable Ed Timperlake
Former professional staff, House Rules Committee
former Marine Corps officer/author
Margaret C. Hemenway
former professional staff, House Government Reform and Oversight
former Deputy White House Liaison/OSD
Dr. Angelo Codevilla
former U.S. Foreign Service Officer,
Staff, U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence
Richard J. Douglas
U.S. Foreign Service veteran
U.S. Navy Iraq Veteran
former U.S. Senate staff
Candidate, U.S. Senate 2014
David S. Sullivan
retired, Senior Professional staff, U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee
LT COL (ret.) USMCR
Former CNN/CSPAN foreign affairs commentator
Rear Admiral James J. Carey
U.S. Navy (ret.)
National Chairman, National Defense Committee
Naval Academy graduate, carrier pilot, former Department of Defense official, former CIA agent, awarded The Order of Oman for services in that ally’s war with the communist guerrillas of the Peoples Democratic Republic of Yemen; author of two books including “Iran Covenant”
Former U.S. Customs Service official
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army
Robert “Buzz Patterson, Lt Col USAF (RET), former senior military aide and carrier of the “Nuclear Football” for President Bill Clinton. New York Times best selling author of “Dereliction of Duty” and “Reckless Disregard”
President, Pure Pursuit Intelligence Network
Vietnam Veteran, UDT-Officer, former DARPA manager
Author of Secret Weapon
Senior Fellow, Center for Security Policy
Captain Doc Dugan
Chairman, Westmoreland Co. GOP
US Navy, Dominican Republic Intervention 1965
Bonny Sisson Stilwell
National Vietnam Veterans Coalition
ex-officio, VP League of Republican Women, Washington, DC
former Congressional staffer/Army reservist
Captain William Stilwell
Licensed private investigator,
State of Ohio
Vietnam War veteran/Captain, US Army/businessman
Dr. Joseph Arminio
former U.S. House candidate, Maryland-1
Former Member/Board of Directors, Chicago Board of Trade
Floyd Damschen Jr.
Thirty years’ service in the US military; ret. FAA/Air Traffic Control Manager
Richard H. Irish
Korea “Police Action” era E-5
retired “natural born” citizen/
Co-founder, Bozeman Montana Tea Party
Bob Gibson, member of Board of Supervisors in Russell County Va.
Leland Gilbert Hancock HM4
Roslyn A. Hancock, Lieutenant, RN
DeWitt Edwards, retired engineering tech
Assistant organizer of the Middle Peninsula Tea Party
Capt. John J. Snidow (FEDEX ret.)
retired international airline captain
former Lieutenant Colonel (US Army)
Donald W Waugaman
Lt . U. S. Naval Reserve
Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group 2
Service 1969 thru 1980
Active Duty – 1970 thru 1973
Constitutional Civil Libertarian
Linda Gunn MS/CCC-SLP
Brenda Hardison, Chesapeake, Va.
Dr. Eldon Bell, ret. Colonel, U.S. Army,
ret. Minister Counselor, U.S. Department of State
Chairman, Patrick Henry Patriots