From CNN: The top U.S. intelligence official said on Tuesday there was no obvious warning ahead of the deadly attack on the American consulate in Benghazi, Libya, and rebuffed criticism of the intelligence community’s initial assessment of the incident. James Clapper, director of National Intelligence, said in raw and revealing remarks to a group of intelligence professionals and contractors in Orlando that there is a “message” the intelligence community has learned since the September 11 attack that is “applicable to the executive and legislative branches of government” as well as to members of the media.U.S. intelligence has been sharply criticized by some members of Congress who allege the Obama administration did not come out soon enough and identify the attack that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans as a planned, terrorist assault.
Clapper said an increased security risk is the new normal overseas, and that people need to understand what intelligence can and cannot do. “The challenge is always a tactical warning, the exact insights ahead of time that such an attack is going to take place and obviously we did not have that,” Clapper said in answering questions after the speech. “This gets into the mysteries versus secrets thing. If people don’t behave, emit a behavior or talk or something else ahead of time to be detected, it’s going to be very hard to predict an exact attack and come up with an exact attack,” he said.