The attack in Libya on the US Consulate that killed US Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others on Sept. 11 has been declared as not coordinated in advance, according to Matthew Olsen, director of the US National Counterterrorism Center. Here are the top ten fact you need to know.
1. Matthew Olsen is the Director of the US National Counterterrorism Center
The National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC) is a government organization responsible for national and international counterterrorism efforts.
2. Best Information Indicates it was an Opportunistic Attack
“The best information we have now indicates that this was an opportunistic attack,” Olsen, who cautioned that the investigation isn’t finished, said at a Senate Homeland Security Committee hearing today in Washington.
3. There is No Evidence that the Attack was Planned
“What we don’t have at this point is specific intelligence that there was significant advance planning or coordination for this attack,” he said.
4. The Individuals Involved in the Attack May have had Connections to Al-Qaida
Olsen said the US is “looking at indications” that individuals involved in the attack may have had connections to al-Qaida or its North African affiliate, al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb.
5. FBI Officials are Due to Arrive in Benghazi by Sept. 21
FBI officials are headed to Benghazi and set to arrive by Sept. 21 to work with Libyan officials to further conduct the investigation.
6. Four Men are Currently Being Detained
Four men are being detained in Benghazi in connection to the attack, but it is unknown whether the men are members of a radial Islamist brigade, Ansar al-Sharia. Ansar al-Sharia members are said to have an alleged role in the attack.
7. Magariaf Said the Attack was a Deliberate, Calculated Action
The recently elected head of the General National Congress, Mohamed Magariaf said the attack was "a deliberate, calculated action by a group working in collaboration with non-Libya extremests."
8. Senator Susan Rice Said that a Spontaneous Demonstration was Hijacked by Extremists.
But Susan Rice disagreed with Magariaf, saying that the attack was simply the result of a spontaneous demonstration "hijacked" by extremists.
9. There is Still Confusion
Despite Matthew Olsen's claims, the public is still not convinced that the attack was not planned. At least there are two views going around.
10. If Attacks Not Preplanned, they Coincidentally Occurred on 9/11 Anniversary
Although there is no evidence that the attack on the US Consulate was planned before the protests in Libya took place, it is still a coincidence that they occurred on the eleventh anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
The investigation is still developing and indications of advanced planning are still being looked for.