No they didn’t.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta says the U.S. military “did everything they were in position to do” about the attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya.
In a letter and timeline sent to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Panetta said the Sept. 11 attack on the consulate and nearby annex in Benghazi were over before U.S. forces could arrive.
In the meantime, he said, the Defense Department diverted a nearby unarmed, unmanned drone to the consulate and dispatched special operations forces from Europe and the United States.
“The department’s senior leaders and I spared no effort to save the lives of our American colleagues, as we worked to bolster security in response to a series of other threats in the region occurring at the same time,” Panetta said.
Still, it’s unclear whether Panetta’s explanation and timeline will satisfy members of Congress who continue to press the administration for more details and transparency about the attack.