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Elsewhere, California

Elsewhere, California

By Dana Johnson

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U.S. Positions Two Warships Off Libya

Posted on Sep 12, 2012
Official U.S. Navy Imagery (CC BY 2.0)

The USS Laboon in early 2010.

Two U.S. destroyers equipped with Tomahawk missiles are moving into Mediterranean waters north of Libya after attacks on a U.S. consulate in Benghazi and another in the Egyptian capital of Cairo.

Libyans in Benghazi sympathetic to the United States poured into the streets to peacefully protest what the Obama administration suspects was an attack organized by anti-American groups.

Initial reports suggested the attack in Benghazi was a spontaneous response to a film that mocked Muslims and the Prophet Muhammad. “Innocence of Muslims” was supposedly made by a 56-year-old Israeli-born Jewish writer and director named Sam Bacile. Israeli officials claimed no such citizen existed according to their records and similarly denied a connection to the film. Bacile has since been revealed to be 55-year-old Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, a Coptic Christian living near Los Angeles. Nakoula initially denied that he directed the film, but a phone call The Associated Press made to the number belonging to “Bacile” traced to an address where its reporters found Nakoula. Federal court papers have since revealed Nakoula to have used several aliases.

—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

Security Clearance at CNN:

“These ships will give the administration flexibility,” a senior official said, if the administration orders action against targets in Libya.

The USS Laboon was making a port call in Crete, a few hours from Libya, when it was ordered to reposition. The USS McFaul was outside the Strait of Gibraltar, a few days sail from Libya, and is headed to the Libyan coast.

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