Months before the murder of a U.S. ambassador in Benghazi, American intelligence analysts documented a massive al-Qaida rally a few miles from the ambassador's residence.
At that rally, terror leaders called for the murder of American diplomats.
Three U.S. intelligence reports, unearthed by the American Media Institute and detailed here for the first time, offer vivid descriptions of the al-Qaida meeting.
Flying the black flag of al-Qaida, some 300 armed men gathered in Benghazi's Al-Tahrir Square on June 7 and 8, 2012. They brandished machine guns, rocket launchers and a truck mounted with an anti-aircraft cannon.
The two-day meeting, which included outdoor prayers and a parade of armed vehicles, was attended by a baker's dozen of North African al-Qaida affiliates.
"It was like a team pep rally before the game, only for jihad," said a U.S. intelligence analyst who monitors North Africa. "Organized and deadly. You saw what followed. People died."
In the face of these three reports, the State Department continued to deny requests for additional security for the U.S. ambassador in Libya.
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