Democrats are suddenly opposed to free speech, now that ABC is allegedly airing a miniseries that depicts the Clinton administration buffoons as anything but terrorist-killing superheroes of the universe.
A furious Bill Clinton is warning ABC that its mini-series “The Path to 9/11″ grossly misrepresents his pursuit of Osama bin Laden - and he is demanding the network “pull the drama” if changes aren’t made.
What’s he going to do if they don’t… Vince Foster them?
Clinton pointedly refuted several fictionalized scenes that he claims insinuate he was too distracted by the Monica Lewinsky sex scandal to care about bin Laden and that a top adviser pulled the plug on CIA operatives who were just moments away from bagging the terror master, according to a letter to ABC boss Bob Iger obtained by The Post.
Fictionalized? According to the 9/11 Commission’s Report:
Clarke wrote to Berger’s deputy on February 10 that the military was then doing targeting work to hit the main camp with cruise missiles and should be in position to strike the following morning. Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert appears to have been briefed on the situation.
No strike was launched. By February 12 Bin Ladin had apparently moved on, and the immediate strike plans became moot. According to CIA and Defense officials, policymakers were concerned about the danger that a strike would kill an Emirati prince or other senior officials who might be with Bin Ladin or close by. Clarke told us the strike was called off after consultations with Director Tenet because the intelligence was dubious, and it seemed to Clarke as if the CIA was presenting an option to attack America’s best counterterrorism ally in the Gulf. The lead CIA official in the field, Gary Schroen, felt that the intelligence reporting in this case was very reliable; the Bin Ladin unit chief, “Mike,” agreed. Schroen believes today that this was a lost opportunity to kill Bin Ladin before 9/11.
The former president also disputed the portrayal of then-Secretary of State Madeleine Albright as having tipped off Pakistani officials that a strike was coming, giving bin Laden a chance to flee.
He’s right. It wasn’t Albright and Pakistan, it was Richard Clarke and the UAE:
On March 7, 1999, Clarke called a UAE official to express his concerns about possible associations between Emirati officials and Bin Ladin. Clarke later wrote in a memorandum of this conversation that the call had been approved at an interagency meeting and cleared with the CIA. When the former Bin Ladin unit chief found out about Clarke’s call, he questioned CIA officials, who denied having given such a clearance. Imagery confirmed that less than a week after Clarke’s phone call the camp was hurriedly dismantled, and the site was deserted. CIA officers, including Deputy Director for Operations Pavitt, were irate. “Mike” thought the dismantling of the camp erased a possible site for targeting Bin Ladin.
And then there’s Sandy Bergler. You remember him, don’t you? He’s the former Clinton National Security Adviser and policy adviser to the John Kerry presidential campaign who pled guilty to stealing and destroying “sensitive after-action report on the Clinton administration’s handling of al-Qaida terror threats”. Well, he’s written a letter to ABC as well:
I am especially troubled by a scene described to me in which CIA operatives in Afghanistan have al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in their sights and seek authorization to attack. This is followed by a scene in which an actor portraying “Sandy Berger” refuses on behalf of the President to authorize a strike despite the urgent pleadings of CIA officials. This alleged “missed opportunity” to get bin Laden is followed by al Qaeda’s attack on our embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, and eventually, the devastating events of 9/11.
No such episode ever occurred – nor did anything like it. There is nothing in the 9/11 Commission Report (the purported basis of your film) to support this portrayal and the fabrication of this scene (of such apparent magnitude) cannot be justified under any reasonable definition of dramatic license. In no instance did President Clinton or I ever fail to support a request from the CIA or US military to authorize an operation against bin Laden or al Qaeda.
Oh really? Accordng to the 9/11 Commission’s Report, Berger was involved in at least 4 occurences of “failing to support” such requests.
1. Early 1998:
In Washington, Berger expressed doubt about the dependability of the tribals. In his meeting with Tenet, Berger focused most, however, on the question of what was to be done with Bin Ladin if he were actually captured. He worried that the hard evidence against Bin Ladin was still skimpy and that there was a danger of snatching him and bringing him to the United States only to see him acquitted.
Then, even after the bombings in Kenya and Tanzania:
2. Dec. 4, 1999:
National Security Council counterterrorism coordinator Richard Clarke sent Berger a memo suggesting a strike against al-Qaida camps in Afghanistan. According to the commission, however, in the “margin next to Clarke’s suggestion to attack Al Qaeda facilities in the week before January 1, 2000, Berger wrote, ‘no.’“
2. August 2000:
Berger was presented with a plan to attack bin Laden based on aerial surveillance from a “Predator” drone. “In the memo’s margin,” the commission said, “Berger wrote that before considering action, ‘I will want more than verified location: we will need, at least, data on pattern of movements to provide some assurance he will remain in place.’”
3. June 1999:
The potential target was an al-Qaida terrorist camp in Afghanistan known as Tarnak Farms. But the commission cites Berger’s handwritten notes on the meeting paper, which referred to “the presence of 7 to 11 families in the Tarnak Farms facility, which could mean 60-65 casualties.” The Berger notes said, “if he responds, we’re blamed.”
But aside from all that, yeah, the movie’s inaccurate.
But, unfortunately it appears ABC has caved to the Clinton threats. (But is it really a surprise that Robert Iger would step in?)
Makes one wonder even more just what was in those “sensitive after-action reports on the Clinton administration’s handling of al-Qaida terror threats” that Sandy Bergler stole from the National Archives and subsequently destroyed.
I apologize for insinuating that the Clinton administration didn’t have an approach to dealing with terrorism. I’ve uncovered proof of just how they dealt with it:
In response to the argument that the Clinton administration didn’t pass on a chance to get bin Laden… Here are Clinton’s own words (audio file).
“Mr. bin Laden used to live in Sudan. He was expelled from Saudi Arabia in 1991, then he went to Sudan. And we’d been hearing that the Sudanese wanted America to start meeting with them again.
They released him. At the time, 1996, he had committed no crime against America, so I did not bring him here, because we had no basis on which to hold him, though we knew he wanted to commit crimes against America.
And if a tape recording of Bill Clinton admitting such isn’t enough, how about videotape of bin Laden from a U.S. drone plane? As NBC rightly asks: “The CIA had pictures. Why wasn’t the al-Qaida leader captured or killed?” Maybe the answer lies somewhere in the ruins of Sandy Bergler’s shredder.
Looks like Democrats are actually threatening what amounts to true censorship.
SENATE DEMOCRATIC LEADERSHIP URGES DISNEY CEO TO CANCEL MISLEADING 9/11 MINISERIES. Amazing.
Is this Stolen Honor, Part 2 (hat tip: Allah)?
Sinclair Broadcasting owns 62 local TV stations around the country. It planned to air Stolen Honor: Wounds That Never Heal on about 40 of them in October 2004. That would be right before the presidential election. But the Kerry campaign got wind of it and threatened Sinclair that its licenses might be in jeopardy if it aired the doc and Kerry happened to win.
Feel free to contact ABC and let them know what you think about this.
500 S. Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521-4551
Web Form: http://abc.go.com/site/contactus.html
Here’s an interesting take on this whole episode:
A Right and Responsibility to Speak Out
…America has always been stronger when we have not only proclaimed free speech, but listened to it. Yes, in every war, there have been those who demand suppression and silencing….
Dismissing dissent is not only wrong, but dangerous when America’s leadership is unwilling to admit mistakes, unwilling to engage in honest discussion of the nation’s direction, and unwilling to hold itself accountable for the consequences of decisions made without genuine disclosure, or genuine debate….
Think this is the commentary of some rightwinger reflecting upon the Democrat leadership’s threats against ABC for airing the miniseries? Think again. It was spoken by former Democrat presidential candidate John Kerry in April of this year. Hypocrisy much?
Jamie Allman has a video rant about this story.
MKH is covering the edits…
SisterToldjah has a great roundup.