MIAMI (CBS4) – As some streets in Benghazi swell with Libyan’s offering their condolences and apologies for the horrific attack on the US consulate that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others, CBS4 Chief Investigator Michele Gillen spoke with the US Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright who said that such outrage is being shared with her by Libya’s leaders.
“They are deeply regretful for what happened,” Albright told Gillen as she visited a North Miami Beach community center on a campaign swing, “Women for Obama.”
Gillen asked if the hunt is on for answers or, clues to who perpetrated the attack and killings.
“I think people are l trying to assess who the group was,” reflected Albright.
Some observers say perhaps the timing should not have taken everyone off guard, given that it was September 11th and just weeks from the one year anniversary of the death of Moammar Gadaffi.
Gillen had interviewed Gadaffi in Tripoli after he announced he was giving up weapons of mass destruction. At that time, there was no US Embassy and it would be months before it was considered safe enough to set up a US diplomatic mission.
In these months following his death, Albright added, “You can’t just set up a company that has been the personal camp of a dictator and expect it to function.”
Given Moammar Gadaffi’s rule, it had been some three decades since an American Embassy had been up and running in Libya. The former one in Tripoli had been stormed and set on fire in 1979.
In diplomatic circles, Chris Stevens was highly respected. It’s been said he was comfortable in Benghazi and Tripoli, often in the locals shops and restaurants and welcomed by many who believed he helped lead them toward democracy.
Does Ms. Albright believe the consulate will reopen?
“I do believe it will. I do believe what President Obama and Secretary Clinton has said, this was one adjunct group. (The whole country) cannot be judged on the basis of what this group did.”