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Testimony paints gray picture of Benghazi attacks

WASHINGTON -- Emotional testimony today on Capitol Hill about last year's deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya.
Three witnesses gave their description of how events unfolded the night a U.S. ambassador and three other Americans were killed.
Republicans accuse the Obama administration of covering up the incident and called today's hearing to get answers.
Republicans are calling them whistleblowers. Three State Department witnesses who've come forward with information challenging the Obama administration's handling of the Benghazi attack.

"It matters to me personally and to my colleagues at the Department of State," said Eric Nordstrom.

In emotional testimony, Gregory Hicks, the former Deputy Chief of Mission in Libya described the night Ambassador Chris Stevens and the three other Americans were killed.

"I got the ambassador on the other end and he said "Greg, we're under attack,'" Hicks said.

Hicks believes the Obama administration could have done more that night. He says he repeatedly inquired about whether military support was on the way.

Hicks claims a Special Forces unit in Tripoli was prepared to board a flight to Benghazi but were told not to because they did not have authorization.

"They were furious," Hicks said.

In the days after the attack, UN Ambassador Susan Rice recited talking points from intelligence officials that the attack was the result of a
spontaneous protest. Hicks, says Rice never asked him about that night.

"I was stunned. My jaw dropped and I was embarrassed," Hicks said.

The Obama administration later admitted the incident was a terrorist attack. Democrats accuse Republicans of politicizing Benghazi.

"I am not questioning the motives of our witnesses. I am questioning the motives of those who want to use their statements for political purposes," said Rep. Elijah Cummings.

The White House today said that an independent review of the administration's handling of the Benghazi attacks found the government's response timely and appropriate.