Hillary Clinton accepts responsibility for Libya U.S. deaths
October 16 , 2012
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said she takes responsibility for the security failure at the Benghazi consulate that led to the deaths of four Americans in Libya last month.
Clinton said ensuring the safety of U.S. diplomats was her duty, not that of the White House.
Republicans have slammed President Barack Obama over the attack, with the party’s presidential candidate Mitt Romney likely to raise it again in the upcoming second debate with Obama.
Political pundits suggest Clinton is trying to steer criticism away from Obama, who needs a strong debate performance following his widely panned one in the first debate.
"What we had to do in the state department was keep focused not on why something happened - that was for the intelligence community to determine - but what was happening and what could happen. I'd expect what happened in Benghazi will be a central question he (Mitt Romney) will want to raise - but he has to be clearer on what lessons he draws from the tragic lack of security and the Obama administration changing its story on the motivation behind the attack,” said Clinton
"And that's what I was very much working on, day and night, to try to make sure that we intervened with governments. We did everything we could to keep our people safe, which is my primary responsibility,” she added.
In interviews with the American media, Clinton went on to say she was focused on finding the killers and bringing them to justice.
"I don't think we want to get into any blame game. I think what we want to do is get to the bottom of what happened, figure out what we're going to do to protect people and prevent it from happening again and then track down whoever did and bring them to justice."
Protestors stormed the consulate on September 11, the anniversary of the 2001 attacks on the United States.
Ambassador Christopher Stevens died of smoke inhalation when he was trapped alone in the burning building. Three other officials were killed, and three wounded.
Earlier this week, Stevens’ father said it would be "abhorrent" to politize his son's death.