The fall of Gaddafi in Libya gave the United States an opportunity to befriend a long antagonistic nation in Northern Africa, and to put eyes and ears on the ground. The deaths two weeks ago of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, mean that both U.S.-Libya relations and the U.S. intelligence mission in Libya have taken a hit. Eric Schmitt, a senior writer who covers terrorism and national security issues for The New York Times, says the evacuating of Americans from Benghazi has left an "intelligence gap" on the ground in Libya.
U.S. intelligence officials have assured Schmitt that "we are certainly not blind by any regard in Benghazi right now." Nevertheless, an already challenging intelligence mission has become all the more perilous in the last two weeks.
Libya and Egypt are very important intelligence centers for the United States in the Middle East, so it is with great trepidation that we watch the situation unfold in Northern Africa.