Michael Ingmire watched as Hillary Clinton was grilled for 11 hours Thursday about the 2012 attack in Benghazi that left his nephew and three other Americans dead and saw not a future president, but a “serial liar.”
As a congressional panel pressed the former Secretary of State over the attack on the consulate facility in the Libyan city, Ingmire, uncle of Sean Smith, and relatives of former Navy SEALs Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty watched from their homes, hoping Clinton’s testimony would yield answers about why additional security was not granted and why she initially blamed the attack on a YouTube video instead of a coordinated act of terrorism.
“The thing that was shocking – one of the pinnacle moments – was the revelation she told her family there was a terrorist attack while she told America something else,” Smith’s uncle, Michael Ingmire, told FoxNews.com. “Mrs. Clinton is a serial liar.”
Smith, an information officer, and Woods, a former Navy SEAL, died along with Doherty and U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens when Islamic militants stormed the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi and set it ablaze before attacking a nearby CIA compound with machine guns and rockets.
Stevens, the first U.S. Ambassador killed in the line of duty since 1979, had repeatedly asked the State Department for increased security at the consulate prior to the attack but his requests were not granted.
In the hours following the attacks, the Obama administration learned they were carefully planned assaults by Al Qaeda-related militants but Clinton and others would go on to tell a different tale: an anti-Muslim YouTube video caused spontaneous protests and angry mobs were to blame for the attacks.
“So if there’s no evidence for a video-inspired protest, then where did the false narrative start?” Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan asked Clinton during the hearing Thursday.
“It started with you, Madam Secretary,” he said. “You could live with a protest about a video, that won’t hurt you, but a terror attack would.”
Clinton rejected Jordan’s claim, describing the situation in the hours after the attack as “fluid” and the details unclear.
“I am sorry that it doesn’t fit your narrative congressman, I can only tell you what the facts are,” Clinton said.
During the marathon hours of questioning — which Democrats claim was a partisan attack on the Democratic presidential frontrunner — Clinton said Stevens understood the risks involved and that his requests for additional security never crossed her desk.
“Those requests for security were rightly reviewed by the security professionals,” Clinton told the committee. “I did not see them. I did not approve them. I did not deny them.”
Clinton also described Stevens as a friend, saying the 52-year-old ambassador “understood that most people in Libya or anywhere reject the extremists’ argument that violence can ever be a path to dignity or justice.”
“I knew and admired Chris Stevens,” she said in her opening remarks Thursday. “He was one of our nation’s most accomplished diplomats. Chris’ mother liked to say he had ‘sand in his shoes,’ because he was always moving, always working, especially in the Middle East that he came to know so well.”
But Clinton’s closeness to Stevens was called into question by Rep Susan Brooks, R-Ill., who asked: “Did you ever personally speak to him after you swore him in in May? Yes or no please.”
“Yes, I believe I did,” Clinton replied. “I don’t recall.”
Ingmire described Clinton’s choice of words about Stevens as jarring.
“How could she say ‘Chris thought this’ and ‘Chris felt that’ when she basically had nothing to do with him?” Ingmire said.
Tyrone Woods’ father, Charles, recalled meeting Clinton when his son’s body arrived at Andrews Air Force Base two days after the attacks.
“I gave Hillary a hug and shook her hand and she said, ‘We are going to have the filmmaker arrested who was responsible for the death of your son,” Woods said, reading the account from his journal.
“That was a complete bald-faced lie,” he told FoxNews.com Friday. “The day after the attack, she was talking to the Prime Minister of Egypt and she said the attack in Libya had nothing to do with the video.”
Smith’s mother, Patricia, gave a similar account, saying she was told by the administration “it was a video when they knew it was not a video.”
“They told me lies,” she said Friday. “My son told me the night before that he has been asking for security and he hasn’t heard anything.”