AFRICOM - From US Senate's Report on Benghazi Attacks
Since its creation, AFRICOM has been involved in a number of operations in Africa, with a focus on training African forces and engaging in counterterrorism activities in the Horn of Africa. Unlike many of the other geographical combatant commands, AFRICOM was developed to maintain a light footprint.
It maintains a single base on the entire continent, in Djibouti,. In the spring of 2011, AFRICOM directed U.S. support to the NATO military operations in Libya, and in October 2011, it established a joint task force to command and control post-conflict U.S. operations related to Libya...
(But) General Ham did not have complete visibility of the extent and number of government personnel in Benghazi...
AFRICOMís lack of operational assets near Benghazi hindered its capacity to evacuate U.S. personnel during the attacks. The Djibouti base was several thousand miles away. There was no Marine expeditionary unit, carrier group or a smaller group of U.S. ships closely located in the Mediterranean Sea that could have provided aerial or ground support or helped evacuate personnel from Benghazi.
AFRICOM also lacked a dedicated Commanderís In-extremis Force (CIF)óa specially trained force capable of performing no-notice missions. As a result, General Ham was forced to call on the European Commandís CIF whose location in Eastern Europe prevented it from getting to Benghazi before the four Americans were killed and all other U.S. personnel were evacuated. We note that AFRICOM later received an independent CIF in October, 2012.
[link to www.hsgac.senate.gov