September 7, 2006



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.

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.

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.

"The content of this drama is factually and incontrovertibly inaccurate and ABC has the duty to fully correct all errors or pull the drama entirely," the four-page letter said.

There's plenty of blame to go around for our not taking al Qaeda seriously--he just doesn't want to accept any.

Posted by Orrin Judd at September 7, 2006 8:23 AM

Gosh. My political opponents are outraged because a major media organization has chosen to look at what they did with (what they are saying is) a profoundly hostile eye, picking the bad, ignoring the good, twisting the events so as to make them look as awful as possible???

I just can't IMAGINE how they must feel!!


Posted by: Andrew X at September 7, 2006 10:08 AM

Imagine the reaction we would see if a GOP President and his top advisors demanded that a network revise a completed program to reflect their political/historical views, or else yank the production off the air.

We would instantly hear cries of outraged horror from Democrats, Liberals, the Mainstream Media, Hollywood, Kofi Anan, the Europeans and the Dixie Chicks (since, it seems they are not quite as busy giving concerts these days). God forbid that if Bush or his people had made a demand like this, the airwaves and editorial columns would echo with crys of "chilling affect", "First Amendment!" and the usual predictions of "the dark night of Fascism descending on America".

I actually think I will tune into NPR and click over the the NY Times in the next few days. It will be refreshing to hear and read their robust denunciation of the totalitarian Clinton Administration.

Posted by: JonSK at September 7, 2006 10:47 AM

Most seriously, the path to 9-11 goes directly through the post-Watergate Dolchstoss.

Anxious to erect a firewall masking their own penetration by unfriendly foreigh powers our November Criminals took care to separate foreigh intelligence from domestic law enforcement.

This in turn created a bureaucratic culture within both the intelligence and law enforcement communities which exaggerated the strength and height of the firewall.

There are smoking guns all over the crime scene. Bits and pieces of the shipwreck are well known, but the conclusions are still just outside the public consciousness.

Posted by: Lou Gots at September 7, 2006 10:47 AM

It's interesting to contrast the reaction here to the one conservatives had to the Reagan movie that Barbara Streisand had a hand in a couple of years ago. Conservatives were outraged and eventually got Viacom to shift the movie over to Showtime, but the outrage was based on fabricated conversations that had no historical support whatsoever. Here, the Clinton people are outraged about what they say is fabricated conversations, but at the same time some also seem to be trying to refute entire sections of the 9/11 Commission report on what they did and didn't do while in office.

The actions of those offended also are worth noting -- conservative anger with Viacom on the Reagan biopic was on the lines of "There they go again"; none of those protesting were surprised at what was to come out, based on the people making it. The Clintonites reaction is more like a betrayed lover whose stunned that someone they trusted for so long could be so duplicitous.

Posted by: John at September 7, 2006 10:52 AM

Clinton is warning ABC about misrepresentations, etc. That's a very strange choice of words.

Knowing as we do that words have meaning, I see a couple of possible scenarios. One – this is just another whitewash and this mini-brouhaha is a publicity stunt to drum up interest in the show, or two -- the show actually reports events truthfully and a seriously delusional Clinton is issuing veiled threats he can't back up.

Posted by: erp at September 7, 2006 10:56 AM

If he gets really mad, will Clinton have Sandy Berger reveal what he put into his pants and socks?

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at September 7, 2006 2:02 PM

What's in Sandy Burglar's pants bears no interest. What's in the Bent One's pants, on the other hand. . .

Posted by: obc at September 7, 2006 4:22 PM

Reports later in the day indicate that ABC has indeed tweaked the program, and the disclaimer, in response to left-wing complaints. If true, this is pathetic.

Posted by: JonSK at September 7, 2006 5:05 PM

Drudge says ABC caved. Story in the Los Angeles Times.

Posted by: erp at September 7, 2006 6:26 PM

Here are the specific complaints that the Clintonites have with the program.

I'd be interested what the usual gang here thinks.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at September 7, 2006 10:41 PM

Variety now is reporting that ABC is considering pulling the film.

Posted by: George at September 8, 2006 12:20 PM

Bill Clinton to ABC (2006) - "just tell the truth".

Bill Clinton to Robert Ray (2001) - "I did not tell the truth".

Bill Clinton (1993) - "My administration will be the most ethical in history".

Bill Clinton (1998) - "I did not have sex with that woman".

Bill Clinton (1998) - "It depends on what the meaning of 'is' is".

Bill Clinton (2002) - "We couldn't take Bin Laden because we couldn't hold him".

Bill Clinton (various) - "I fought hard against terrorism every day".

And that's why he has to nitpick with ABC. Because it's all he has left. Too bad that all his shills (Carville, Begala, Bruce Lindsay, Ann Lewis, John Podesta, and the rest) diminish themselves everyday by continuing their association with him.

Posted by: ratbert at September 9, 2006 1:54 AM