Three days after the Benghazi attack, agents of CNN entered the unsecured consulate compound and found seven pages of handwriting in a hard-bound book. which belonged to U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens

These writings, confirmed by knowledgeable sources, indicate that in the months prior to the attack, the ambassador was concerned about security in Benghazi and Islamic extremism.

The State Department calls CNN’s actions an “indefensible” invasion of privacy.  Secretary of State Hillary Clinton‘s senior adviser Philippe Reines, says CNN is:

“not owning up to is reading and transcribing Chris’s diary well before bothering to tell the family or anyone else that they took it from the site of the attack. Or that when they finally did tell them, they completely ignored the wishes of the family, and ultimately broke their pledge made to them only hours after they witnessed the return to the Unites States of Chris’s remains.”

CNN released a statement Saturday:

“CNN did not initially report on the existence of a journal out of respect for the family, but we felt there were issues raised in the journal which required full reporting, which we did. We think the public had a right to know what CNN had learned from multiple sources about the fears and warnings of a terror threat before the Benghazi attack which are now raising questions about why the State Department didn’t do more to protect Ambassador Stevens and other US personnel. Perhaps the real question here is why is the State Department now attacking the messenger.”

The New York Times reports that a dozen C.I.A. operatives and contractors were among the evacuees from the consulate in Benghazi.  These specialists were critical to coordination with local intelligence officers, tracking shoulder-fired missiles taken from Qaddafi’s forces and locating chemical weapons.

The CIA had been active in the area since the start of Libyan revolution in February 2011. Benghazi was a center of rebel activity against the regime.