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'Secret Soldiers of Benghazi' Talk about Their Unforgettable 13 Hours

01-15-2016
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When terrorists attacked the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi on September 11, 2012, members of a security team for the CIA stepped up to defend hundreds of Americans.

The former members of the military shared their courageous story in a book called 13 Hours,  and it's now major motion picture.

The story is told from the perspective of six former elite military operators who were hired to secure a CIA annex, just a mile away from the United States diplomatic compound.

The men defied orders to stand down and rushed to defend those being attacked by Islamic jihadists at the American consulate.

In the film, actor John Krasinski plays Jack Silva, a former U.S. Navy SEAL who has remained anonymous.

"The politicizing of the issue has actually overshadowed the human story," Krasinski told CBN News.

"These six guys risked their lives to save all these people that night and that is the true definition of heroism. And you realize that all the politics came after that moment," he said.

Krasiniski went on to say, "I actually got to meet the Jack Silva, which was the most vital part of the process for me and not only did I admire him as a military, but I saw who he was was a very unassuming, incredibly generous, kind man who was a great husband, a great father."

"That, to me, added a whole new level of emotion to the role in terms of what he leaves behind every time he puts himself in a situation like this," he said.

Former Marine-turned-contractor Mark "Oz" Geist lived through those unforgettable 13 hours that are now playing out on the big screen in the movie by the same name.

"For me, my faith and my relationship with God is always there. That foundation, I was lucky to have that instilled in me from my parents from birth," Geist told CBN News.

Kris "Tonto" Paronto is a former security contractor and Army Ranger.

"I am telling you right now -- there are no atheists in a foxhole. There is none. When those bullets are flying that faith in God comes out," Paronto said.

Paronto, Geist and John "Tig" Tiegen are three of the "secret soldiers of Benghazi." And all three say they would risk their lives again to save others.

"I love the job," Geist said. "A lot of people say, 'You did it for money,' but not really because the pay in the beginning was really good, but the pay dropped quite a bit."

"And there are other contracts you can go do, like oil companies and stuff like that," he continued. "But I would not enjoy risking my life for oil. So I stayed where I was protecting people and stopping the terrorists at their homeland and not letting them come here. Plus, being around the guys is a lot of fun."

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