11:51 p.m., 9/11/12. BuzzFeed reports that the U.S. Embassy in Cairo has deleted its earlier tweets of the statement that remains on the embassy website.
12:01 am, 9/12/12.: The chairman of the Republican National Committee waits until one minute after the end of the anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks, then tweets:
12:09 a.m., 9/12/12. Obama spokesman Ben LaBolt emails reporters a response to Romney's statement: "We are shocked that, at a time when the United States of America is confronting the tragic death of one of our diplomatic officers in Libya, Governor Romney would choose to launch a political attack."
7:21 a.m., 9/12/12. President Obama condemns the attacks in Libya, confirming that the U.S. ambassador was slain:
I strongly condemn the outrageous attack on our diplomatic facility in Benghazi, which took the lives of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens. Right now, the American people have the families of those we lost in our thoughts and prayers. They exemplified America's commitment to freedom, justice, and partnership with nations and people around the globe, and stand in stark contrast to those who callously took their lives.
I have directed my Administration to provide all necessary resources to support the security of our personnel in Libya, and to increase security at our diplomatic posts around the globe. While the United States rejects efforts to denigrate the religious beliefs of others, we must all unequivocally oppose the kind of senseless violence that took the lives of these public servants.
On a personal note, Chris was a courageous and exemplary representative of the United States. Throughout the Libyan revolution, he selflessly served our country and the Libyan people at our mission in Benghazi. As Ambassador in Tripoli, he has supported Libya's transition to democracy. His legacy will endure wherever human beings reach for liberty and justice. I am profoundly grateful for his service to my Administration, and deeply saddened by this loss.
The brave Americans we lost represent the extraordinary service and sacrifices that our civilians make every day around the globe. As we stand united with their families, let us now redouble our own efforts to carry their work forward.
9:57-10:05 a.m., 9/12/12. Saying "our hearts break" over each State Department loss, Hillary Clinton said in remarks at the department, "We condemn in the strongest terms this senseless act of violence." "Because of this tragedy we have new heroes to honor and more friends to mourn," she said, later asking the question that will be on many minds today: "How could this happen in a country we helped liberate, in a city we helped save from destruction?" It was, she said, "confounding." But we must be "clear-eyed in our grief," she said: "This was an attack by a small and savage group, not the people or government of Libya." Defending the American traditions of religious tolerance and free speech, she added: "Let me be clear: There is no justification for this. None." Full Clinton statement.