Benghazi deaths: problems need to be fixed

2:42 AM, Dec 21, 2012   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The White House says what happened in Benghazi, Libya in September, was unacceptable and the problems that led to the deaths of four Americans there need to be fixed.

The White House was reacting for the first time to a report from a high-level panel that looked into the attack that killed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others. The report says management failures at the State Department led to insufficient security at the consulate.

A top State Department official told a Senate panel on Thursday that Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is putting into place 29 recommendations from the review board. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns says "We learned some very hard and painful lessons in Benghazi."

Republicans sparred with Burns and another top State Department official over whether warning signs were ignored, and why the department didn't ask Congress for more money to boost security at the mission.

Since the attack, Democrats have complained that Republicans cut $300 million from the Obama administration's budget request of $2.6 billion for diplomatic and embassy security this year. Sen. Barbara Boxer said, "You can't protect a facility without the funding."

Associated Press

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