Top Diplomat in Tripoli: Pentagon Told Special Forces to 'Stand Down'

Pentagon says special operators told to stay where they would do most good.

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Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., greets Gregory Hicks, former deputy chief of mission in Libya, who told the committee the Pentagon ordered special forces in the country to "stand down" against his own advice.

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Throughout the night, as many as 60 people overran the Benghazi compound through four phases of the attack and evacuation, he said.

This led up to roughly 3 a.m. on Sept. 12, when Hicks received what he calls "the saddest phone call I've ever had in my life." The Libyan prime minister informed him that Stevens had died.

"Our team responded with amazing discipline and courage in Tripoli, in organizing our withdrawal," he said. "I have vivid memories of that."

"I was in awe, I am still in awe of them," he said.

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