What the big, fat filmmaker left out
Why have anti-terrorism laws and measures generally targeted people of Mexican, Central and South American descent? For example, Operation Tarmac, targeting airport workers, has not caught a single terrorist, but it has caught lots of Mexicans. Also, why are terror-inducing anti-immigrant raids being conducted under the same pretext, targeting these same communities?
Gonzales and Rodriguez: What the big, fat filmmaker left out
Posted: July 23, 2004
What can be said about "Fahrenheit 9/11" that hasn't already been said? That Michael Moore actually went easy on the administration? It's true. Here are some issues that went unexplored:
* The administration continues to insinuate that the United States went to war by authority of the United Nations. The U.N., including its 15-member Security Council, was almost unanimously opposed to the Iraqi invasion.
* After the invasion, when no Weapons of Mass Destruction were found, the administration began to assert that it had never claimed that there was an imminent threat, this despite rushing the U.N. inspectors out of Iraq. Also not explored is the belief by Bush and Blair that complete "intelligence" ineptness equals exoneration for their administrations.
* The four nations that imposed the war deadline upon the U.N. were the United States, England, Spain and Portugal - coincidentally, the world's leading colonial powers of the past 500 years. They actually disregarded their own deadline as they began the war early.
* The actual dispute before the U.N. was never whether Iraq possessed a WMD arsenal, but rather, did Iraq pose a threat to the United States and the "free world"?
* "The Coalition of the Willing" includes unelected and ruthless dictators who have created new repressive laws, under the pretext of the war on terror, to crack down on their internal enemies.
* In claiming that the war is supposed to spread democracy, not explored is that virtually all the nations that have supported the war (England, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Australia, Turkey, etc.) have done so generally against the wishes of a majority of their own citizens. Also, even though Kuwait was liberated some 12 years ago, it is still not a democracy. And Afghanistan, the new model for democracy, is once again the world's number one heroin producer.
* Also not explored is the notion that the war is supposedly part of the larger road map to Middle East peace. Relations between Israel and the Palestinians have never been worse.
* What was the extent of the use of the internationally banned cluster bombs and depleted uranium by the U.S. military?
* Why do we not count, much less identify, Iraqi casualties, and by what authority does the United States operate secret detention centers outside of the United States? Also not explored is the privatization of the war (See "The Quiet Rise of National Security, Inc.", Vol. 52, No. 2 Issue of the online magazine http://www.towardfreedom.com)
* Does the color-coded terrorism warning system serve any purpose, and has it been politically exploited by government officials? Also, where did the anthrax threat come from, and what is the status of the investigation?
* Why have anti-terrorism laws and measures generally targeted people of Mexican, Central and South American descent? For example, Operation Tarmac, targeting airport workers, has not caught a single terrorist, but it has caught lots of Mexicans. Also, why are terror-inducing anti-immigrant raids being conducted under the same pretext, targeting these same communities?
* The movie did not explore the administration's claim to have the right to a permanent state of war, with all the inherent "special powers" afforded presidents during such times. (Not even wild-eyed Moore could have imagined the administration's discussion about the possibility of postponing/canceling the presidential elections.)
* Much of the grumbling about the war has come not from Democrats, but from disgruntled insiders from the Reagan and Bush I and II administrations. Neither was there a word about the administration's concerted effort (TIPS and other intrusive programs) to "Big Brotherize" the Homeland.
* There hasn't been a word about the "New American Century" and its authors, Paul Wolfowitz and Richard Perle, who were plotting to war on Iraq long before 9/11, nor about how many of the unrepentant Iran-Contra figures (Otto Reich, Elliott Abrams, John Negroponte and John Poindexter) who have found refuge in this administration.
* And there's been nary a word about the president's religious beliefs and whether they've been manipulated into a crusade against Islam. Neither explored is that most religious leaders worldwide did not support this religiously driven "war president."
Even without these issues being addressed, "Fahrenheit 9/11" is a searing indictment on the current administration. The one thing Bush admirers might take pleasure in is outside of the president's initial seven-minute freeze when first informed of the attacks - the rest of the film does depict him as decisive in regards to the war on terror - albeit, decisively wrong.
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