NEW YORK – The allegation that Hillary Clinton’s State Department secretly provided arms to jihadists in Libya has been further bolstered by videos and photographs provided to WND by Libyan expatriates, including a video showing the chief spokesman for the Moammar Gadhafi regime displaying to reporters a cache of weapons and ammunition seized from a ship from Qatar.
The images support the conclusion reached by the Citizen’s Commission on Benghazi that the Obama White House and the State Department under the management of Hillary Clinton “changed sides in the War on Terror” in 2011 by implementing a policy of facilitating the delivery of weapons to the al Qaida-dominated rebel militias attempting to overthrow Gadhafi.
In addition, FoxNews.com reported in May that emails released by the State Department show Hillary Clinton’s interest in arming Libyan opposition groups before the fall of Gadhafi in 2011, even though the United States and United Nations prohibited arming without following strict guidelines and oversight.
Last week, Fox News legal analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano claimed in his syndicated column that Clinton, as secretary of state, lied to Congress about providing arms to jihadists.
Napolitano explained that Mark Turi, a licensed American arms dealer, sold hundreds of millions of dollars of U.S. arms to the government of Qatar, which then – at the request of the American government – was sold, bartered or given to rebel groups in Libya and Syria, including to groups that were on the U.S. terror list at the time.
Also, the New York Times reported March 25, 2013, American intelligence officers helped Arab governments “shop for weapons” for Syrian rebels and vetted rebel commanders and groups to determine who should receive the weapons. In March 2011, Reuters reported Obama had signed a secret order authorizing covert U.S. government support for the rebel forces in Libya seeking to oust Gaddafi, quoting U.S. government officials. Also that month, the London Independent reported the U.S. asked Saudi Arabia if it could supply weapons to the rebels in Benghazi.
One video provided to WND shows Moussa Ibrahim, Gadhafi’s information minister and official spokesman, displaying to reporters in 2011 a cache of weapons and ammunition seized from a ship from Qatar intercepted by the Libyan Coast Guard off Libya’s coast.
The video matches a report of Qatari military equipment seized in mid-April 2011. Anthony Bell and David Witter of the Institute for the Study of War, in their October 2011 publication “The Libyan Revolution: Stalemate & Siege, Part 3,” said the shipments “consisting of bulletproof vests, helmets, and ammunition were bound for the rebels besieged in Misrata.”
“Though his shipment was unannounced, Qatari Prime Minister al-Thani alluded to arming the rebels just days before the crates appeared,” they wrote.
In the first meeting of the Libya Contact Group – an international collective formed to support the overthrow of Gadhafi and a transition government – al-Thani stated that assistance to the rebels could include “all other needs, including defense equipment.”
“It is time to help the Libyan people defend themselves and to defend the Libyan people,'” the Qatari leader said April 13, 2011.
Bell and Witter wrote that “NATO and rebel officials, as well as Sheikh al-Thani himself also claimed Qatar had shipped heavier weapons, including shoulder-fired Milan anti-tank weapons, to the rebels.”
On April 13, 2011, Ashish Kumar Sen, writing in the Washington Times, reported that the Libyan Contact Group meeting for the first time demanded that Gadhafi stand down.
Sen noted that while U.N. Security Council Resolution 1973 imposed a no-fly zone and an arms embargo on Libya, it also permitted member states to take all means necessary to protect civilians.
The Washington Times story noted that Clinton and Defense Secretary Robert Gates “have indicated that the resolution leaves open the possibility of arming the rebels.”
One video obtained by WND shows Gadhafi’s spokesman complaining that weapons intercepted from Qatar were “outside the mandate of the Security Council.”
“When it comes to supplying weapons to the rebels, everyone is keen,” Ibrahim said, explaining that the two boats captured with the weapons were on a mission with the Qatari Army in conjunction with NATO forces.
The second video and the various still photographic evidence obtained by WND show a wide assortment of captured weapons that were being transported in crates clearly marked “State of Qatar, Qatar Armed Forces, Doha, Qatar.”
See the video of weapons and ammunition:
The Citizen’s Commission on Benghazi’s interim report in April 2014 alleges “the U.S. was fully aware of and facilitating the delivery of weapons to the Al Qaeda-dominated rebel militias throughout the 2011 rebellion.”
Several members of the Citizens Commission, speaking for themselves, gave WND background to the interim report’s conclusion.
Clare Lopez, a former career operations officer with the CIA and current vice president for research at the Washington-based Center for Security Policy, noted that in early 2011, before Gadhafi was deposed, U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens came to Benghazi in a cargo ship with the title of “envoy to the Libyan rebels.”
Lopez observed that basically meant Stevens, who was killed in the Sept. 11, 2012, attack in Benghazi, was “America’s very first envoy to al-Qaida.”
“At that time, Stevens was facilitating the delivery of weapons to the al-Qaida-related militia in Libya,” Lopez said.
She said the weapons, financed by the United Arab Emirates, were produced at factories in Eastern Europe and sent to a logistics hub in Qatar.
Most were sent by ship and some possibly by airplane to Benghazi.
The weapons were small arms, including Kalashnikovs, rocket-propelled grenades, or RPGs, accompanied by “lots of ammunition,” she said.
Lopez further explained that when Stevens was facilitating the delivery of weapons to the al-Qaida-affiliated militia in Libya, he was living in the facility in Benghazi that was later designated the Special Mission Compound.
“This was about weapons going into Libya, and Stevens is coordinating with Abdelhakim Belhadj, the leader of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, other al-Qaida-affiliated militia leaders and leaders of the Libyan Muslim Brotherhood that directed the rebellion against Gadhafi as an offshoot of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood,” she said.
Lopez pointed out that individual members of the al-Qaida-related militias, including the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group and the groups that would later become Ansar Al-Sharia, originally were Muslim Brotherhood members.
Napolitano explained that the “same State and Treasury Departments that licensed the sales also prohibited them.”
“Many of the rebels Mrs. Clinton armed, using the weapons lawfully sold to Qatar by Mr. Turi and others, were terrorist groups who are our sworn enemies,” he wrote.
Napolitano recalled that at a public hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee on Jan. 23, 2013, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky, asked Clinton whether she knew of any U.S. role in shipping arms through Benghazi.
While he concedes it is unclear whether Clinton was under oath at the time, he contends it is legally irrelevant.
“The obligation to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth to Congress pertains to all witnesses who testify before congressional committees, whether an oath has been administered or not,” he wrote.
Clinton’s relevant testimony is as follows:
Sen. Paul: My question is: Is the U.S. involved with any procuring of weapons, transfer of weapons buying, selling anyhow transferring weapons to Turkey out of Libya?
Mrs. Clinton: To Turkey? … I will have to take that question for the record. Nobody’s ever raised that with me. I, I …
Mr. Paul: It’s been in news reports that ships have been leaving from Libya and that they may have weapons, and what I’d like to know is the [Benghazi] annex that was close by. Were they involved with procuring, buying, selling, obtaining weapons, and were any of these weapons transferred to other countries any countries, Turkey included?
Mrs. Clinton: Senator, you will have to direct that question to the agency that ran the annex. And I will see what information is available and …
Sen. Paul. Are you saying you don’t know?
Mrs. Clinton: I do not know. I don’t have any information on that.
Napolitano noted that while Clinton “denied knowledge of the arms shipments, she and her State Department designee, Andrew Shapiro, had authorized thousands of shipments of billions of dollars’ worth of arms to U.S. enemies to fight her secret war.”
“Among the casualties of her war were U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three colleagues, who were assassinated at the American consulate in Benghazi, by rebels Mrs. Clinton armed with American military hardware in violation of American Law.”
Napolitano concluded: “Hillary Clinton lied to Congress, gave arms to terrorists and destroyed her emails.”
He asked: “How much longer can she hide the truth? How much longer can her lawlessness go unchallenged and unprosecuted? Does she really think the American voters will overlook her criminal behavior and put her in the White House where she can pardon herself?”