There is no shortage of opinions on this miniseries… And they are almost always interesting.
John Podhoretz, the conservative New York Post columnist, WRITES THAT ABC Entertainment is just plain wrong:
"The portrait of (Clinton Secretary of State Madelaine) Albright is an unacceptable revision of recent history and an unfair mark on a public servant who, no matter her shortcomings, doesn’t deserve to be remembered by millions of Americans as the inadvertent (and truculent) savior of Osama bin Laden….Samuel Berger, Clinton’s national security adviser, also seems to have just cause for complaint….
"’The Path to 9/11′ gets it wrong. The real truth about the failures of the U.S. government under both Clinton and Bush is not, as ‘The Path to 9/11′ would have it, that the diabolical nature of the al Qaeda threat was obvious and unmistakable and that it was ignored by fools, charlatans and other downright unpleasant people who refused to listen to the Few Who Knew the Truth …The simple fact of the matter is that, with a million other things going on all at once – all of which seemed more pressing at the time, the threat went uncomprehended."
Likewise, on CNN, conservative comentator Bill Bennett said:
"’T'he Path to 9/1′ is strewn with a lot of problems and I think there were problems in the Clinton administration. But that’s no reason to falsify the record, falsify conversations by either the president or his leading people and you know it just shouldn’t happen. Conservatives have to be consistent Soledad, when ‘The Reagans,’ that show about the Reagans, CBS show came out, had all sorts of distortions and misstatements. Conservatives went crazy and had it relegated somewhere, I don’t know, it never appeared on CBS. And so I think they should be consistent. And when ABC comes out and has conversations taking place among cabinet members on recent history, on matters that are still before us, I think they should correct those inaccuracies."
On the other hand, this morning we received an email from Michael Scheuer, former chief of the Osama bin Laden Unit at the CIA’s Counterterrorist Center (and the previously "Anonymous" author of "Imperial Hubris") who is clearly no fan of either the Bush nor the Clinton Administrations — nor the 9/11 Commission. He writes the following:
"This whole business over ABC’s movie is amazing. Now Arthur Schlesinger, Jr. and a pack of political whores who pass themselves off as ‘historians’ have come out four-square for pre-publication censorship.
"As I have told you, the core of the movie is irrefutably true: the Clinton administration had 10 chances to capture of kill bin Laden. Had the 9/11 Commission not whitewashed events, personal culpability would have been assigned and we as a nation could have moved on to fight al-Qaeda. The Commission turned out to be hack-dominated, however, and ignored the documents that were presented to them, as well as the testimony it received under oath. Instead of telling the American people that the intelligence regarding bin Laden, al-Qaeda and their intentions was abundant, precise, and not acted on, the Commissioners blamed ‘the structure of the intelligence community’ for the failure and then proceeded to wreck the community with a horrendous reform package.
"The solution is really quite simple, I think. Declassify the documents and testimony of the men and women who risked their lives to collect the intelligence that Clinton and his lieutenants failed to act on. Present this information to the American people — and perhaps put some of those officers on TV to answer questions — and then let the chips fall where they may. If the critics of the ABC movie are so confident they are right, they would surely welcome this process."