Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Fabled Enemies, Part I

Since Jason has always been cordial with me, I decided I would take on his newest film. It is one of the oddball ironies of our position vis-a-vis the "Truthers" that our attention gives credibility to some of these projects. I'll take on the film ten minutes at a time, provided I don't lose interest:

General comments: After Dylan's nasal twang and Sofia's ice goddess voice, Bermas' narration is something of a relief. I do think he's a little too matter-of-fact in tone, but that may change at some point in the film. There are many places where there is annoying repetitive noise in the background, such as right at the very beginning, when we see the Naudet Brothers footage. I checked the high-quality Google video and found the same problem. It's incredibly annoying.

Points argued:

1. The networks were too eager to nominate Osama Bin Laden as the mastermind of the attacks. Of course, it's like back in the 1980s when a bomb went off in London, of course the IRA was going to be the first suspect on everybody's list.

2. The FBI doesn't want Osama for 9-11. This nonsense continues. Bermas claims that Rex Tomb said this; we don't know that. We know that Ed Haas says that Rex Tomb said this, but we also know that the FBI is furnishing evidence to the military tribunals currently getting underway of KSM, Ramzi Bin-al-Shibh, and others involved in the planning.

3. Many of the hijackers were trained within US military bases. Simply a case of similar names. Note that as usual, the sources are mainstream media reports from the first days after the attacks.

4. Colonel Stephen Butler, of the Defense Language Institute, said Bush knew in advance of the attacks.

Butler's a clear case of Bush Derangement Syndrome. Here's the text of his letter:

It's about time conservative idiots like Steve Kelly and Rod Musgrove got a dose of reality. Of course President Bush knew about the impending attacks on America. He did nothing to warn the American people because he needed this war on terrorism. His daddy had Saddam and he needed Osama.

His presidency was going nowhere. He wasn't elected by the American people, but placed into the Oval Office by the conservative supreme court. The economy was sliding into the usual Republican pits and he needed something on which to hang his presidency.

For them to accuse Democrats of being "sleazy" is laughable. Isn't it ironic that Kelly begins his inane babble with a reference to Monica Lewinsky? How many people died because of Monica Lewinsky? And for Musgrove to call the assertions "contemptible" is another joke. Funny how he manages to make disparaging remarks about President Clinton, as well.

Face it people, Bill Clinton was a great president. This guy is a joke. What is sleazy and contemptible is the President of the United States not telling the American people what he knows for political gain. The Democrats asking pertinent questions is their duty as public servants.

Steve Butler

Note the lack of evidence presented in the letter. Bermas claims Butler is an authority because one or more of the hijackers purportedly attended his school, and yet Butler fails to mention that fact.

5. A woman named Diane Albritten (ph) called the CIA on some of her hijacker neighbors living at 502 Orrin Street. This appears to be true:

Fed up with the parking problem, and suspicious of activities at the house, the neighbor across the street at 503 Orrin St., John E. Albritton, called federal authorities, according to his wife. She says they observed a van parked outside the home at all hours of the day and night. A Middle-Eastern man appeared to be monitoring a scanner or radio inside the van, she says.

But reading the article it's pretty clear that the neighbors suspected drug-dealing and that there were too many people living in the house, not exactly the kind of thing that the CIA investigates.

6. J. Michael Springmann claims he was told to issue visas to unqualified applicants. Bermas overlays Mohamed Atta's passport on the screen, but of course Springmann is talking about 1986-1987, more than a decade before Atta came to the United States. Springmann rattles on about some Sudanese guy; of course, none of the hijackers were from the Sudan. Springmann managed to imply that the guys he was pushed to let in were CIA assets, like "the guys I let in a couple years previously." Of course it was not a couple of years previously, it was well over a decade previously.

7. Springmann gets into deeper waters with his claim that he had met some people who told him that the CIA was working with Osama Bin Laden. This claim has been repeated endlessly, mostly by people who have not looked into Osama's activities in the 1980s.

8. Bermas claims "It is now known that Osama Bin Laden was a CIA asset, under the codename, Tim Osman."

9. Cynthia McKinney comes on to talk about how the US government paid the Bin Laden family $300 million to construct "the camps". McKinney claims that these camps were located in Afghanistan. I will have to look further into this claim; it's a new one on me.

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