The closed-door testimony of CIA staff and contractors appears to bolster claims that more could have been done by U.S. personnel to respond to the scene of the Benghazi terror attack.
Recent media reports have contradicted claims that U.S. personnel were given stand-down orders and kept from responding to the scene -- but sources on the ground that night tell Fox News that not only were they given, but they were given in multiple locations, as Fox News has previously reported.
“The whole issue about stand down orders is not an issue,” said Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Calif., who sits on the House Intelligence Committee. “There clearly were stand down orders given to people not only in Benghazi but also in Tripoli and the State Department's counterterrorism team.”
Eight men, either CIA staff or contractors, have now testified before the House Intelligence Committee about the night last year when four Americans were killed in Benghazi, including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens.
Rep.Tom Rooney, R-Fla., calls the Benghazi response anything but a “phony scandal,” as alleged by some on the left.
“When you hear the administration say, 'well, there wasn't enough time for anybody to get there.' Okay, fine. But how did you know when it was going to end? Even if it was at the 11th hour, so to speak, why wasn't help on the way?”
As for reported differing views among committee members, committee head Mike Rogers, R.-Mich., said last month, “sometimes someone can see the same event and see three different things.The good news is we have the transcripts. We'll sit down, go over all the transcripts and we’ll fill-in all the gaps. That's why this part of it was so important.”
The transcripts themselves are classified.
Some committee members insist more information needs to be released by the CIA and State Department, including phone records the committee has not yet received.
Fox News also has learned that the Senate committee report on Benghazi is nearly complete and may be released before Christmas.