In today’s Washington Times Douglas MacKinnon, who served in the White House under Reagan and the first George Bush, and also at the Pentagon, discusses Chris Wallace’s challenge to the panel at the Frost/Nixon preview in Washington earlier this week. He makes an especially telling point:
As one who spent three years working in a joint command in the Pentagon with a top secret clearance, and with the full knowledge that the American people — and that includes the powers that be in Hollywood — are not privy to the vast amount of information or intelligence used to protect them, I’d like to pose a very probable scenario to Messrs. Howard, Morgan, Reston, and Dallek: What if, based on up-to-the-minute intelligence contained in the President’s Daily Briefing (the PDB), President-elect Barack Obama is confronted with horrific information that the candidate Obama never saw, and decides purely in the national security interests of our nation to keep in place some of the policies of the hated Mr. Bush? What critical movie, biased historical supposition, or slanted screenplay will they offer up in criticism of Mr. Obama?
And it turns out that not all the liberal icons at the screening were happy about the film; the day after the screening, the Times quoted former Washington Post executive editor Ben Bradlee as declaring that “they [ie, the filmmakers] never should have let him apologize in the film. Nixon never was sorry for what he did.”