Sep 7, 2006

On that ABC 9/11 Docudrama

Mark Coffey, the always reasonable and thoughtful blogger at Decision '08:

Think Progress and Richard Clarke apparently had a good point with their objection to the scene where Sandy Berger is shown dithering while the CIA has bin Laden in its sights. … this report in CQ confirms to my satisfaction that the scene is in the movie, and it’s as described, and it is in fact fictional …

Berger, portrayed as a pasty-faced time-server by Kevin Dunn (Col. Hicks in “Godzilla”) freezes in dithering apprehension when a manly and virtuous CIA agent played by Donnie Wahlberg radios in from the wilds of Afghanistan to say that he and his noble band of local tribesmen have Osama bin Laden within sight and begs for the green light to terminate him with extreme prejudice. In the film, the line goes dead before Berger offers any reply.

… this is 9/11, and ‘reasonably accurate’ isn’t good enough. Either go completely fiction or stick to the facts. This sounds an awful lot like the Dan Rather excuse for the National Guard fiasco (that the essence of the story was true, even if the details were fabricated), and I’m not interested in this sort of clever parsing of words.

Berger may be a tool. Clinton may have been asleep at the switch. (Maybe we all were asleep at the switch?) But, as Mark says, “fake but accurate” doesn’t cut it, not with a subject as important as 9/11.

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