Mary Howe Kiraly
Perhaps your email box is as full as mine with messages discussing the controversial Disney-ABC "docudrama" about the attack on the World Trade Center? This six-hour fictionalized, composite presentation, "The Path to 9/11," is scheduled to air on September 10 and 11. It is purported that the dramatization will lay the blame, for failing to capture or kill Osama Bin Laden, on the Clinton Administration. It is no coincidence that this piece of fiction arrives in the middle of a hotly contested political season- and at a time when the president is expending a great deal of effort, trying to deflect attention from the war in Iraq.
It is also interesting that this dramatization may air within days of the release of documents damaging to the Bush Administration's efforts to avoid responsibility for its own use of intelligence in the run up to the war in Iraq. The Senate Intelligence Committee is scheduled to vote today to declassify several "less controversial" chapters of the Committee's investigation into Administration handling of intelligence on Iraq.
You will remember the episode last year, when the Democrats shut down the Senate over the Intelligence Committee's failure to undertake the promised investigation. At that time, Committee Chairman Pat Roberts (R-KS) said that he did not know what the fuss was all about: the Committee was within weeks of releasing a report.
It didn't happen then. We may see a few "crumbs" from the full loaf on Friday. As we know, Friday afternoon is the optimum time, politicians find, for dropping distasteful and embarrassing information into the media's trough. It appears that Republicans expect the charges made in "The Path to 9/11" to spread the blame around.
If all of this makes you angry enough to want to contact the appropriate corporate heads, responsible for Disney-ABC Television decisions, here is a place to start. Ms. Anne Sweeney is the President, Disney-ABC Television Group. The address for the Walt Disney Company is 500 South Buena Vista Street, Burbank, CA. 91521. Here is a fax number for the Director of Investor Relations: 818-560-1930. Coincidentally, Ms. Sweeney will be addressing the Merrill Lynch Media and Entertainment Conference on Wednesday, September 13- just days after the airing of this special presentation.
Remember how angry Republicans got over a proposed docudrama on the Reagans? It never aired on the major networks. It's time for Democrats to force the shelving of this effort, by political operatives, to rewrite history.