Kurtz Gives Berger a Pass on 9/11 Controversy

Howard Kurtz highlights former Clinton national security adviser Sandy Berger's complaints over ABC's upcoming 9/11 docu-drama in a piece in today's Washington Post.

Top officials of the Clinton administration have launched a preemptive strike against an ABC-TV "docudrama," slated to air Sunday and Monday, that they say includes made-up scenes depicting them as undermining attempts to kill Osama bin Laden.

Former secretary of state Madeleine K. Albright called one scene involving her "false and defamatory." Former national security adviser Samuel R. "Sandy" Berger said the film "flagrantly misrepresents my personal actions."

Kurtz tends to be a fairly honest broker most of the time; however, he drops the ball on this one. As I pointed out in a recent post on my home blog, Berger is not exactly the guy to lead any charge on setting the record straight, particularly as regards 9/11. He's an admitted liar and thief. It shouldn't be too much to expect a little context for Berger's complaints from a presumably un-biased media source.

On July 19, 2004, it was revealed that the U.S. Justice Department was investigating Berger for taking as many as fifty classified documents, in October 2003, from a National Archives reading room prior to testifying before the 9/11 Commission. The documents were commissioned from Richard Clarke about the Clinton administration's handling of millennium terror threats. When initially questioned, Berger claimed that the removal of top-secret documents in his attache-case and handwritten notes in his pants and jacket pockets was accidental. He would later, in a guilty plea, admit to deliberately removing materials and then cutting them up with scissors. Some suggested that Berger's removal of the documents constituted theft and moreover had serious national security implications, while others claimed that the documents were taken, only drafts and all were flattering to Clinton and Berger (relating to the failed 2000 millennium attack plots).

9/11 ABC Washington Post Path to 9/11 Journalistic Issues