On This Day, Sept 11, 2012 – Four Die in Attack on Benghazi Consulate


2012 – Terrorists attacked the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Four Americans were brutally murdered and ten others were injured.

News of the attacks spreads against the backdrop of two other major stories: protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo and the U.S. presidential campaign. The Cairo protests, which took place just hours before the attack in Benghazi, were sparked by anger over an anti-Muslim video made in the United States. In the following days, angry demonstrations are held at U.S. diplomatic missions throughout the Muslim world.

Initial reports from journalists in Libya also link the Benghazi attack to the video, and remarks from U.S. officials seem to lay blame there as well. On Sept. 12, President Barack Obama says in his Rose Garden remarks about the attack: “We reject all efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others. But there is absolutely no justification to this type of senseless violence.” He also makes a general reference to terrorism, saying, “No acts of terror will ever shake the resolve of this great nation.”

In her remarks on the same day, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says: “We are working to determine the precise motivations and methods of those who carried out this assault. Some have sought to justify this vicious behavior, along with the protest that took place at our embassy in Cairo yesterday, as a response to inflammatory material posted on the Internet.” In a State Department briefing that day, however, officials say they don’t have information about whether there were protests related to the video at the Benghazi compound at the time of the attack.

In the following days, some witnesses tell NPR there was no protest before the attack, and Libyan government officials say the attack was planned.

1297 – Scotsman William Wallace defeated the English forces of Sir Hugh de Cressingham at the Battle of Stirling Bridge.

1609 – Explorer Henry Hudson sailed into New York harbor and discovered Manhattan Island and the Hudson River.

1776 – A Peace Conference was held between British General Howe and three representatives of the Continental Congress (Benjamin Franklin, John Adams and Edward Rutledge). The conference failed and the American war for independence continued for seven years.

1777 – American forces, under General George Washington, were forced to retreat at the Battle of Brandywine Creek by British forces under William Howe. The Stars and Stripes (American flag) were carried for the first time in the battle.

1789 – Alexander Hamilton was appointed by President George Washington to be the first secretary of the treasury.

1814 – The U.S. fleet defeated a squadron of British ships in the Battle of Lake Champlain, VT.

1842 – 1,400 Mexican troops captured San Antonio, TX. The Mexicans retreated with prisoners.

1877 – The first comic-character timepiece was patented by the Waterbury Clock Company.

1883 – The mail chute was patented by James Cutler. The new device was first used in the Elwood Building in Rochester, NY.

1897 – A ten-week strike of coal workers in Pennsylvania, WV, and Ohio came to an end. The workers won and eight-hour workday, semi-monthly pay, and company stores were abolished.

1910 – In Hollywood, the first commercially successful electric bus line opened.

1936 – Boulder Dam in Nevada was dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt who turned on the dam’s first hydroelectric generator. The dam is now called Hoover Dam.

1941 – President Franklin D. Roosevelt gave orders to attack any German or Italian vessels found in U.S. defensive waters. The U.S. had not officially entered World War II at this time.

1941 – Charles A. Lindbergh brought on charges of anti-Semitism with a speech in which he blamed “the British, the Jewish and the Roosevelt administration” for trying to draw the United States into World War II.

1951 – Florence Chadwick became the first woman to swim the English Channel from both directions.

1952 – Dr. Charles Hufnagel successfully replaced a diseased aorta valve with an artificial valve made of plastic.

1959 – Congress passed a bill authorizing the creation of food stamps.

1965 – The 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile) arrived in South Vietnam and was stationed at An Khe.

1967 – “The Carol Burnett Show” premiered on CBS.

1970 – The last “Get Smart” episode aired on CBS-TV.

1974 – “Little House On The Prairie” made its television debut.

1974 – The St. Louis Cardinals and the New York Mets set a National League record when they played 25 innings. It was the second longest game in professional baseball history.

1985 – Pete Rose (Cincinnati Reds) achieved hit number 4,192 to break the record held by Ty Cobb.

1985 – A U.S. satellite passed through the tail of the Giacobini-Zinner comet. It was the first on-the-spot sampling of a comet.

1991 – Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev announced that thousands of troops would be drawn out of Cuba.

1997 – John Lee Hooker received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

1997 – Scotland voted to create its own Parliament after 290 years of union with England.

1998 – Independent counsel Kenneth Starr sent a report to Congress accusing President Clinton of 11 possible impeachable offenses.

1999The Wall Street Journal reported that Bayer Corp. had quit putting a wad of cotton in their bottles of aspirin. Bayer had actually stopped the practice earlier in the year.

2001 – In the U.S., four airliners were hijacked and were intentionally crashed. Two airliners hit the World Trade Center, which collapsed shortly after, in New York City, NY. One airliner hit the Pentagon in Arlington, VA. Another airliner crashed into a field in Pennsylvania. About 3,000 people were killed.


Source: On-This-Day.com; NPR.org