'Secret Soldiers of Benghazi' Discuss Real-Life Events Behind '13 Hours'

Three contractors who fought back during the Sept. 11, 2012 attacks and actor John Krasinski discuss the film.
8:06 | 01/16/16

Coming up in the next {{countdown}} {{countdownlbl}}

Coming up next:



Skip to this video now

Now Playing:


Related Extras
Related Videos
Video Transcript
Transcript for 'Secret Soldiers of Benghazi' Discuss Real-Life Events Behind '13 Hours'
It's the true-life story of a group of elite former military operatives stationed at a secret cia base in benghazi the night militants attacked. Tonight move they version of events already triggering fresh controversy from Hollywood to Washington. And out on the campaign trail. And depending on whom you ask it's either a tale of extraordinary heroics or another round of political crossfire. -- Benghazi -- Benghazi. Reporter: A word that seems inescapable. Benghazi, Libya. Reporter: All because of what happened in this fiery compound on September 11th, 2012, when armed Al sharia militants stormed a diplomatic compound, then a nearby cia annex. Four Americans slaughtered, including ambassador Chris Stevens. Mark ice, known as oz, one of six former elite military operatives who talking back that night. We knew to get out of there we were going to have to depend on each other, kill them before they kill you. Reporter: Former army ranger Chris parent, aka tonto, was also there. It was chaotic, not simple firefights and we got home. Reporter: Director Michael bay releases "13 hours," the so-called secret soldiers, benghazi's version of what happened. This was a really heroic night. I never knew that till I read the book and talked to these guys. Reporter: In real life, the tragedy triggered massive investigations. At its core, questions of insufficient security and what then-secretary of state Clinton didn't and didn't know. What difference at this point does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again. Reporter: It's already reigniting a firestorm in the midst of a heated presidential race. At last night's debate, republicans pounced on Clinton. Someone who lies to the families of those four victims in benghazi can never be president of the United States. 13 hours. Tomorrow morning a new movie will debut about the incredible bravery of the men fighting for their lives in benghazi and the politicians that abandoned them. A lot of Hillary Clinton's enemies use this and hold her accountable. Do you hold her accountable? No. You know who I hold accountable is Al sharia, that's who attacked them, killed the ambassador. Reporter: One of the contractors guarding the annex when the diplomatic compound came under attack. Does it concern you at all this might be used as fodder on one side or the other? It doesn't worry because it's going to be used one way or the other. For me the most important thing that I hope people are surprised by is how little, if any, politics are involved in the movie. We need immediate assistance -- Reporter: Oz, tonto, and John Teigen are coming out of the shadows after writing the book on which the movie is based. They receive a call at 9:42 P.M. From the diplomatic compound a mile away. Ambassador Stevens needed help. If you do not get here soon we are all going to die. Listen up! None of you have to go. We are the only help they have. Reporter: The men immediately gear up, raring to race to the rescue. Two vehicles stage ready, let's go, move! Reporter: In the movie version the cia base chief tries to delay them. Stand down! There are congressional reports that suggest that didn't happen. What do you say? I didn't see them sitting next to me when they told stand down. The cia base chief said what? He said, stand down, you need to wait. He told me to wait twice. We can have semantics but "Stand down" was said. It cost the lives of Sean smith and ambassador Stevens. Reporter: Tonight the cia calling the claims in the movie shameful, a distortion of the events, and denied any standdown order. The base chief told "The Washington post," at no time did I ever second-guess the team would depart. The men say the crucial delay crippled their rescue mission. By the time they got there extremists had set fire to the residence with the ambassador inside. Tell me about going into a burning building. It's -- extreme intense heat, so hot. You instantly start sweating. The smoke's so thick and black. Reporter: Tig suffered lung damage, repeatedly diving back into the black smoke and flames. The team can't locate ambassador Stevens. Eventually they return to defend the cia annex where they encounter repeated heavy weapons fire. A lot of people misunderstand contractors, they think they're either adrenaline junkies or mercenaries out for money. We are going to give our lives for others if you need us to do it. We're going to do it, that's how we're bred, raised. Reporter: And highly trained. But even elite fighters focused on combat have a human side. I haven't thought about my family once tonight. What would they say about me? He died in a place he didn't need to be in a country that meant nothing to him. When you're dedicated enough to become a Navy S.E.A.L. You do make that promise to them that you will always be there for your brothers. You've also made the same promise to your family. What a juxtaposition to be in. Reporter: The men take to the rooftops holding off the militants until one final deadly barrage. Gee, are we expecting any friendlies? I am not aware of any friendlies. One of the most brutal obviously was when the mortar fire hit and your arm was badly mangled. I start firing. I change magazines. As I'm coming back up the first mortar hits the roof and takes out my arm. You continue to try to fight with your arm badly mangled. Yeah. Reporter: By dawn, ambassador Stevens is pronounced dead of smoke inhalation. And former Navy S.E.A.L. Tyrone woods and former marine Glenn Dougherty have both been killed in action. But the team has managed to rescue about 30 other cia workers. The state department later admits the benghazi outpost was woefully undersecured. And though her name isn't mentioned in the movie, it was Hillary Clinton who was grilled by congress for 11 hours. I've lost more sleep than all of you put together. I have been racking my brain about what more could have been done. Reporter: As for the defense department, in the movie the cia base repeatedly requests military firepower. If you don't send us support, Americans are going to die. Including the one talking to you right now. Reporter: Later, congressional investigations conclude that while fighter jets and tactical teams were scrambled from the nearest bases, they were too far away to get there in time. Do you feel like the military let you down? We don't want to get into that. We want to tell what happened on the ground and really honor the courage that was taking place. You still have shrapnel in your body? Three pieces in there -- Reporter: 14 surgeries later oz is still feeling the effects of that night. I've got limited feeling in the palm of my hand. I don't have much dexterity with it. It's attached and it works. Reporter: Director Michael bay, known for "Transformers" and "Armageddon" says he was drawn to the story of unsung heroes. The extraordinary thing about this story, they did not have to go. When they heard the rpgs and ak fire they volunteered. They were going home to families in a week. Reporter: The stadium premiere with 30,000 fans benefiting groups like the shadow warriors project, providing medical care for wounded contractors. Once we get injured, we're out of country, we get no more pay. I got a lot of lung damage over there, trying to get care through the workman's comp. It wasn't working. What would you say to the critic hot think you're politically motivated? That's the problem, we as a country are so polarized. This I think is something that was done right down the middle. You've got honor, you've got integrity, you've got courage. That's what we need and I hope people come to see this, to bring it back to the er. Reporter: Something perhaps folks on both sides of the aisle can agree on.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

{"duration":"8:06","description":"Three contractors who fought back during the Sept. 11, 2012 attacks and actor John Krasinski discuss the film.","mediaType":"default","section":"ABCNews/Nightline","id":"36328952","title":"'Secret Soldiers of Benghazi' Discuss Real-Life Events Behind '13 Hours'","url":"/Nightline/video/secret-soldiers-benghazi-discuss-real-life-events-13-36328952"}