The Benghazi chapter in Hillary Clinton’s new book Hard Choices states that unlike at the embassy in Benghazi, there were U.S. Marines stationed at the embassy in Tripoli, even though Marines were not sent until after the deadly terrorist attack.
CNN’s Jake Tapper explains the factual mistake:
Noting how many members of the public and Congress were surprised upon discovering “there were no U.S. Marines assigned to our Benghazi compound,” Clinton notes that Marines are assigned to only slightly more than 50 percent of the diplomatic posts throughout the globe, focused primarily on protecting, and if need be destroying classified items.
“So while there were Marines stationed at our embassy in Tripoli, where nearly all of our diplomats worked and which had the capability to process classified material, because there was no classified processing at the diplomatic compound in Benghazi, there were no Marines posted there,” Clinton writes. [...]
But, as General Carter Hamm, the former commander of Africa Command, testified before Congress on June 26, 2013, “there was no Marine security detachment in Tripoli.”
It wasn’t until after the attack that Marines were sent to the U.S. Embassy in Tripoli, a contentious issue before and after the attacks, since so many diplomatic officials and security forces before the attack had been pleading to the State Department for greater military protection in Libya. The former regional security officer at the Embassy in Tripoli, Eric Nordstrom, testified that the most frustrating part of his job had been “dealing and fighting against the people, programs, and personnel who are supposed to be supporting me … For me the Taliban is on the inside of the building.”
The Clinton camp maintains that the version of the story told in the book is factually accurate, though “they agree that the passage could have been written more clearly.”