FAHRENHEIT 9/11 Part II/II - part i



(cut to Dick Clarke)

CHARLIE GIBSON: You come in September 12th, ready to plot what response we take to al Qaeda. Let me talk to you about the response that you got from top administration officials. On that day, what did the President say to you?

DICK CLARKE: The President, in a very intimidating way, left us - me and my staff - with the clear indication that he wanted us to come back with the word that there was an Iraqi hand behind 9/11 because they had been planning to do something about Iraq from before the time they came to office.

CHARLIE GIBSON: Did he ask about any other nations other than Iraq?

DICK CLARKE: No. No no no. No. Not at all. It was Iraq, Saddam, find out, get back to me.

CHARLIE GIBSON: And were his questions more about Iraq than about al Qaeda?

DICK CLARKE: Absolutely. Absolutely. He didn't ask my about al Qaeda.

CHARLIE GIBSON: And the reaction you got that day from the defense secretary, Donald Rumsfeld? And his assistant, Paul Wolfowitz?

DICK CLARKE: Well, Don Rumsfeld said, uh, when we talked about bombing the al Qaeda infrastructure in Afghanistan, he said there were no good targets in Afghanistan, let's bomb Iraq. And we said but Iraq had nothing to do with this. And that didn't seem to make much difference. And the reason they had to do Afghanistan first was it was obvious that al Qaeda had attacked, and it was obvious that al Qaeda was in Afghanistan. The American people wouldn't have stood by if we had done nothing on Afghanistan.

(cue theme song from TV show "Bonanza," map with stage coach lettering "Afghanistan." Map goes up in flames to reveal credits with the heads of George W. Bush, Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, and Tony Blair superimposed over characters from the show)

NARRATOR: The United States began bombing Afghanistan just four weeks after 9/11. (music continues, video of Afghanis watching jets fly overhead) Mr. Bush said he was doing so because the Taliban government of Afghanistan had been harboring bin Laden.

PRESIDENT BUSH: We will smoke 'em out of their holes. / We're gonna smoke 'em out. / Smoke 'em out. / Smoke him out of his cave. / WESTERN GUY: Let's rush him and smoke him out.

NARRATOR: For all his tough talk, Bush really didn't do much.

DICK CLARKE: But what they did was slow and small. They put only 11,000 troops into Afghanistan -- there are more police here in Manhattan, more police here in Manhattan than there are US troops in Afghanistan. Basically the President botched the response to 9/11. He should have gone right after bin Laden. The US Special Forces didn't get into the area where bin Laden was for two months.

NARRATOR: Two months? A mass murderer who attacked the United States was given a two month head start? Who in their right mind would do that? (video of Bush)

PRESIDENT BUSH: Anybody say "nice shot?"

RANDOM PERSON: Nice shot. Hell of a shot.

NARRATOR: Or was the war in Afghanistan really about something else? Perhaps the answer was in Houston, Texas. In 1997 while George W. Bush was Governor of Texas, a delegation of Taliban leaders from Afghanistan flew to Houston to meet with Unocal executives to discuss the building of a pipeline through Afghanistan bringing natural gas from the Caspian Sea. And who got a Caspian Sea drilling contract the same day Unocal signed the pipeline deal? A company headed by a man named Dick Cheney: Halliburton.

MARTHA BRILL OLCOTT: The point of view of the US government is this was kind of a magic pipeline (laugh), um, because it could serve so many purposes.

NARRATOR: And who else stood to benefit from the pipeline? Bush's number one campaign contributor, Kenneth Lay, and the good people of Enron. (shot of BBC News website, 3 December 1997) Only the British press covered this trip. Then in 2001, just 5 1/2 months before 9/11, the Bush Administration welcomed a special Taliban envoy to tour the United States to help improve the image of the Taliban government.

WOMAN: You have imprisoned the women. ... It's a horror, let me tell you.

TALIBAN MEMBER: I'm very sorry to your husband; he might have a very difficult time with you.

NARRATOR: Here is the Taliban official visiting our State Department to meet with US officials. Why on Earth did the Bush administration allow a Taliban leader to visit the United States knowing that the Taliban were harboring the man who bombed the USS Cole and our African embassies? Well, I guess 9/11 put a stop to that. When the invasion of Afghanistan was complete we installed its new president, Hamid Karzai. Who was Hamid Karzai? He was a former advisor to Unocal. Bush also appointed as his envoy to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad who was also a former Unocal advisor. I guess you can probably see where this is leading. Faster than you can say Black Gold Texas Tea, Afghanistan signed an agreement with her neighboring countries to build a pipeline through Afghanistan carrying natural gas from the Caspian Sea. Oh, and the Taliban? Uh, they mostly got away. As did Osama bin Laden and most of al Qaeda.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Terror is bigger than one person. And he's just, he's, he's a, he's a person who's now been marginalized, so, I, I don't know where he is, nor... and I just don't spend that much time on it, Ellie, to be honest with ya.

NARRATOR: Didn't spend much time on it? What kinda President was he?

PRESIDENT BUSH: I'm a war president. I make decisions here in the Oval Office, uh, in foreign policy matters with war on my mind.

NARRATOR: With the war in Afghanistan over and bin Laden forgotten, the war president had a new target: (video of Fox News credits, 'War on Terror') the American people.

FOX REPORTER: We've got an unusual terror warning from the Feds to tell you about. Fox News has obtained an FBI bulletin that warns terrorists could use pen guns - just like in a James Bond - filled with poison as weapons.

NBC REPORTER: Good evening everyone, America is on high alert tonight just four days before Christmas.

CNN REPORTER: ...a possible terrorist threat.

CBS REPORTER: ...as bad as or worse than 9/11.

REPORTER: But where? How? There's nothing specific to report.

REPORTER: Be on the lookout for model airplanes packed with explosives.

(video of Osama smiling, woman screaming)

FOX REPORTER: And the FBI is reporting ferries may be considered particularly at risk for hijacking.

(video of Osama smiling, woman screaming. Switches to video of cows)

REPORTER: Could these cattle be a target for terrorists?

NARRATOR: Fear works?

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT: Fear does work, yes. You could make people do anything if they're afraid.

NARRATOR: And how do you make them afraid?

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT: Well you make them afraid by creating an aura of endless threat. They played us like an organ. They raised the le-, the orange and up to red and then they dropped it back to orange. I mean, they, they give these mixed messages which were crazy making.

PRESIDENT BUSH: The world has changed after September the 11th. It's changed because we're no longer safe. / Fly and enjoy America's great, uh, destination spots.

SECRETARY RUMSFELD: We've entered what may very well prove to be the most dangerous security environment the world's known.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Take your families and enjoy life.

VP CHENEY: Terrorists are doing everything they can to gain even deadlier means of striking us.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Get down to Disney World in Florida.

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT: It's like training a dog; ya tell him to sit down or ya tell him to roll over at the same time, the dog doesn't know what to do. Well the American people are being treated like that. It was really very very skillfully and, and ugly in what they did.

PRESIDENT BUSH: We must stop the terror. I call upon all nations to do everything they can to stop these terrorist killers. Thank you. Now watch this drive. (President driving a golf ball)

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT: They will continue, in my view, as long as this administration's in charge. Every once in a while still leading everybody to be afraid, just in case you forgot. It's not gonna go down to green or blue. It's never gonna get there. There clearly is no way that anyone can live constantly on edge like that.

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GUY ON VIDEO: Heck, you can be sitting in here drinking your finest Bordeaux while chaos is erupting outside.

SECRETARY RIDGE: Every family in America should prepare itself for a terrorist attack.

MATT LAURER: Now to escaping from a skyscraper. John Rivers is the CEO of the Executive Chute Corporation. Good morning to you, John.

JOHN RIVERS: Good morning, Matt.

MATT LAURER: Tell me about the product you're bringing to the market.

JOHN RIVERS: It's a, uh, emergency escape chute. It's an option of last resort.

MATT LAURER: How high do you have to be in the building for that chute to actually take effect?

JOHN RIVERS: You only have to be on the 10th floor or above.

MATT LAURER: They can put this on themselves?

JOHN RIVERS: Right, they can put this on themselves in as easy as about thirty seconds. ... It's real easy to put on. (shot of Rivers and a female assistant, Jamie, holding an escape chute. Begins fumbling around with it, with her, trying to help her get the thing on) It's easy to put on, but uh... when you first get this chute you're gonna wanna put it on and try it on a few times yourself.

MATT LAURER: Jamie's havin' a little trouble puttin' that thing on, I wanna mention. I mean, is, is this something that, that you honestly think that in a moment of, of panic that someone can, can operate properly?

JOHN RIVERS: Oh yeah. Yeah, it is. It's it's, this is actually, uh, Jamie's probably never put this thing on before in her life, so... (Jamie utters something unintelligible) It's okay. Don't worry about it. It's it's something that when you get it you're gonna wanna put it on several times.

REPORTER: Well despite the raising of the terror alert level, residents here in Saginaw are continuing with their Christmas errands. / Francis Troik and her family do some last minute shopping knowing that al Qaeda is planning to attack America. She says being in Saginaw doesn't make her feel any safer than if she was in New York City.

FRANCIS TROIK: Midland is close by, and I said Detroit's not far, not that far away. I said there ain't gonna be someone in Flint, that's gonna be concerned for people out here.

RANDOM MAN: You, you never know where they're gonna hit. You never know where they're gonna hit.

REPORTER: But one potential target specifically mentioned by the terrorists has security officials baffled. It’s tiny Tappahannock, Virginia, population 2,016. Such an attack could generate widespread fear; that even here in rural small-town America, no one is entirely safe.

ROY GLADDING (MAYOR): On the six o'clock news there was something about a terrorist alert in Tappahannock.

NARRATOR: (to County Sheriff) What'd the FBI tell you?

SHERIFF: Well they contacted me by phone, uh, basically let me know they're worried 'bout Tappahannock. That's how it started.

ROY GLADDING: In their so-called chatter that they picked up they wasn't sure... Tappahannock... there's a Rappahannock County, this is the Rappahannock River.

WOMAN w/CHILDREN: There is a Rappahannock, a place called Rappahannock, and they got it mixed up.

NARRATOR: Is there any terrorist target around here?

ROY GLADDING: Not that we can really think of.

SHERIFF: It can happen anywhere.

ROY GLADDING: We have a Wal-Mart here.

WOMAN w/CHILDREN: We have spaghetti supper in here (?).

MAN W/HOSE: Carwash probably.

NARRATOR: Are you real suspicious of outsiders?


(video of missiles launching from battleship)

NARRATOR: On March 19, 2003, George W. Bush and the United States military invaded the sovereign nation of Iraq. A nation that had never attacked the United States. A nation that had never threatened to attack the United States. A nation that had never murdered a single American citizen.

(video of dead child; Iraqis asking what was his crime in Arabic, calling Americans cowards)

(more video of wounded and dead in Iraq)

IRAQI: To find this, this piece of my neighbor, young girl, age twenty, some part of her body. That's all.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #1: There is a lot of innocent civilians that were killed. And I think that's because, uh the US Army, ya know, we came in, and we knew it wasn't gonna be easy, and they much pretty much at first shot anything that moved.

AMERICAN SOLDER #2: More happens, and the fighting starts, ya know, it's kinda like we're pumped up, motivated, ready to go...

AMERICAN SOLDIER #3: It's the ultimate rush cuz you're going into the fight to begin with, and then you got a good song playing in the background and uh, that gets you real fired up. Ready to do the job.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #2: You can hook your CD player up to the tank's internal communications...

AMERICAN SOLDIER #4: To the Charlie Box.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #2: So that way when you put your helmet on you can hear it through the helmet.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #5: This is the one we listen to the most. This is the one we travel, we kill the enemy. (pointing to Drowning Pool CD) Drowning Pool, 'Let the Bodies Hit the Floor,' is just fitting for the job that we're doing.

(more video of wounded, dead)

AMERICAN SOLDIER #6: We picked The Roof Is On Fire because uh, basically it symbolized Baghdad bein' on fire and uh, and at the time we wanted it to burn to get Saddam and his regime out. The roof is on fire... we don't need no water let the mother fuckers burn... burn mother fucker... burn.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #7: This is a whole totally different picture here being pushed into the city, urban warfare in a tank, you know.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #8: Civilians... civilians, it gets... you don't know whose the enemy...

AMERICAN SOLDIER #9: This is a lot more real and true (graphic close-up of injured Iraqi) than a video game. A lot of people thought it was gonna be, "Oh yeah, look through the sight and shoot." No. A lot of this is face to face and especially ridin' by after some of the bombs that went off and seein' all the people on the side of the road blow'd up (more graphic video). All the smells around you, I mean from the people lyin' dead rotted... it's a lot more gruesome than you think.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #10: We called in some artillery and some napalm and things like that. Some innocent women and children got hit. (graphic images of dead women and children) We met them on the road and they had little girls with noses blown off and uh, husbands carrying their dead wives and things like that. And that was extremely difficult to deal with because you're like, you're like, "Shoot. What the hell do we do now?" (video from fighter jet targeting and blowing up a building)

SECRETARY RUMSFELD: The targeting capabilities and the care that goes into targeting is (as he's speaking, video shows of Iraqi child having part of his head stitched back on, crying), is as impressive as anything anyone could see. The care that goes into it, the humanity that goes into it...

IRAQI WOMAN: (subtitles) They slaughtered us. God will destroy their houses. God is great. Victory to Iraq!

IRAQI REPORTER: (subtitles) You mean they killed civilians?

IRAQI WOMAN: Yes, civilians! It's our uncles house! We're all civilians. There is no militia here. I pray to God to avenge us. I can only count on you, God. (crying) We've had five funerals because of the bombings. Oh God. Oh God! God save us from them. Where are you God?

BRITNEY SPEARS: (looking hot) Honestly, I think we should just trust our President in every decision that he makes and we should just support that. You know? And, um, be faithful in what happens.

REPORTER: Do you trust this President?


NARRATOR: Britney Spears was not alone. The majority of the American people trusted the President. And why shouldn't they? He'd spent the better part of the last year giving them every reason why we should invade Iraq.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Saddam Hussein has gone to elaborate lengths, spent enormous sums, taken great risks to build and keep weapons of mass destruction.

SECRETARY POWELL: Saddam Hussein is determined to get his hands on a nuclear bomb.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Nuclear weapon. / Nuclear weapon. / Nuclear weapon.

SECRETARY POWELL: Active chemical munitions bunkers. Mobile production facilities.

PRESIDENT BUSH: We know he's got chemical weapons. / He's got 'em. / He's got 'em. / He's got 'em.

NARRATOR: Huh, that's weird. Because that's not what Bush's people said when he first took office.

SECRETARY POWELL: (subtitle "February 2001") He has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction; he is unable to project conventional power against his neighbors.

CONDOLEEZA RICE: (subtitle "July 2001") We are able to keep arms from him. His military forces have not been rebuilt.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Saddam Hussein aids and protects terrorists. Including members of al Qaeda.

VP CHENEY: There was a relationship between Iraq and al Qaeda.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Saddam / al Qaeda / Saddam / al Qaeda / Saddam / al Qaeda / Saddam / Saddam / Saddam / al Qaeda

SECRETARY RUMSFELD: It is only a matter of time before terrorists states armed with weapons of mass destruction develop the capability to deliver those weapons to US cities.

SECRETARY POWELL: What we're giving you are facts and conclusions based on solid intelligence.

PRESIDENT BUSH: This is a man who hates America. / This is a man who cannot stand what we stand for. / His willingness to terrorize himself. / He hates the fact, like al Qaeda does, that we love freedom. / After all, this is a guy that tried to kill my dad at one time.

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT: They simply got people to believe that there was a real threat out there, when in fact there wasn't one.

SECRETARY RUMSFELD: You get told things every day that don't happen. It doesn't seem to bother people.

NARRATOR: Of course, the Democrats were there to put a stop to all these falsehoods.

SEN. TOM DASCHLE: I will vote to give the President the authority he needs.

SECRETARY POWELL: The United States is prepared to lead a Coalition of the Willing that will do it.

PRESIDENT BUSH: When I say we will lead a Coalition of the Willing to disarm him if he chooses not to disarm, I mean it.

REPORTER: Who is in that Coalition of the Willing?

PRESIDENT BUSH: You will find out who is in the Coalition of the Willing.

(words "Coalition of the Willing" appear over a globe)

VOICEOVER: The Coalition of the Willing roll call: the Republic of Palau. The Republic of Costa Rica. The Republic of Iceland.

NARRATOR: Of course none of these countries has an army or, for that matter, weapons. (showing video clips of people pounding rocks, riding horses and such) So it looked like we'd be doing most of the invading stuff ourselves. But then there was also...

VOICEOVER: Romania. The Kingdom of Morocco.

NARRATOR: Morocco wasn't officially a member of the Coalition, but according to one report, they did offer to send 2,000 monkeys to help detonate landmines.

PRESIDENT BUSH: These are men of vision.

VOICEOVER: The Netherlands.

PRESIDENT BUSH: And I'm incredibly proud to call 'em allies.

(video of baboons sitting at a conference table)

VOICEOVER: Afghanistan.

NARRATOR: Afghanistan? Hm. Oh yeah, they had an army. Our army! I guess that's one way to build a coalition: just keep invading countries. Yes, with our mighty coalition intact (more video of primitive folk wrestling, riding bikes, being very non-Western European... except for the bikes), we were ready.

SECRETARY RUMSFELD: One could almost say it's the mother of all coalitions.

NARRATOR: Fortunately we have an independent media in this country who would tell us the truth.

SHEPERD SMITH: The rallying around the President, around the flag, and around the troops clearly has begun.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #11: And we're gonna win!

LINDA VESTER: You really have to be with the troops to understand the kind of adrenaline rush they get.

KATIE COURIC: I just want you to know I think Navy SEALS rock.

REPORTER: The pictures you're seeing are absolutely phenomenal.

DAN RATHER: When my country's at war, uh, I want my country to win.

PETER JENNINGS: Iraqi opposition has faded in the face of American power.

REPORTER: What you're watching here is truly historic television and journalism (video of embed by tank).

REPORTER: It was absolutely electrifying. They actually had to strap me in with my camera in the back of the plane.

TED KOPPEL: An awesome synchronized killing machine.

DAN RATHER: There is an inherent bias in the coverage of the American press in general.

NEIL CAVUTO: Am I slanted and biased? You're damned well bet I am.

NARRATOR: But one story the media wasn't covering was the personal story of each and every soldier who was killed in the war. The government would not allow any cameras to show the coffins coming home. That kind of story is a downer, especially when you're getting ready for a party on a boat.

(Bush on aircraft carrier)

PRESIDENT BUSH: My fellow Americans (pan up to 'Mission Accomplished' sign), major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed.

(video of bomb going off by a soldier, soldiers dealing with aftermath)

(panorama of cemetery as voiceovers from reporters reading "current" numbers of troop deaths in Iraq -- ends with "largest number of military deaths since Vietnam")

PRESIDENT BUSH: There are some who feel like if they attack us that we may decide to leave prematurely. They don't understand what they're talking about if that's the case. Let me finish. Um, there are some who feel that the conditions are such that they can attack us there. My answer is bring 'em on.

(videos of contractors mutilated in Fallujah)

AMERICAN SOLDIER #12: The United States just plannin' on walkin' in here like it was gonna be easy and all but, it's not that easy to conquer a country, is it?

DAN RATHER: The renewed battle for control of Iraq raged for fourth day today with street clashes in nearly every corner of the country. Iraq could become, quote, another Vietnam.

REPORTER: Officials they see evidence that Sunni and Shiite extremists might be joining forces.

PRESIDENT BUSH: They're not happy they're occupied. I wouldn't be happy if I were occupied either.

(videos of insurgents / terrorists)

REPORTER: Two Japanes aid workers and a journalist kidnapped by men calling themselves the Mujhadeen Squadrons. (video of terrified captives, knives held to their heads) They've threatened to burn these hostages alive if Japan does not withdraw its troops from Iraq within three days.

OFF-SCREEN: What's happened?

THOMAS HAMMILL: Well, they attacked our convoy. (man in black mask speaking in Arabic beside him)

REPORTER: The Pentagon might keep up to twenty-four thousand troops in combat beyond their tour.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #13: I know our numbers in the military have gone down. They talk about retention.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #14: You never really expect to be deployed this long. I don't think anybody did.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #15: I don't have any clue as to why we're still in Iraq.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #16: If Donald Rumsfeld was here, I'd ask him for his resignation.

NARRATOR: With the war not going as planned, and the military in need of many more troops, where would they find the new recruits?

REPORTER: Military experts say three times the 120,000 US troops now deployed would be needed to pacify and rebuild the country.

NARRATOR: They would find them all across America in the places that had been destroyed by the economy. Places where one of the only jobs available was to join the Army. Places like my hometown of Flint, Michigan.

POTENTIAL RECRUIT: And I was watchin' TV one day and they showed like some of the buildings and areas that had been hit by bombs, and things like that, and when I was watchin' I got to thinkin' there's places in Flint look like that, and we ain't been in a war.

RANDOM MAN: Look at the neighborhood I live in. Most of them are abandoned (video of tiny, abandoned homes). I mean, that's not right. You want to talk about terrorism? Come right here. President Bush, right here, come. Come right here. He's knows about this corner -- I e-mailed him.

LILA LISCOMB: At the end of January of '04 the unemployment rate in Flint was actually 17%. But you have to take into consideration as well that when you're unemployment runs out you're no longer counted. I would have to say that we're probably close to at least 50% not working or under-employed. (nodding, then shaking head) Because being under-employed is just as dangerous. ... So my family has gone through the welfare system when it was jobs-central; in the mid-80s I came through the job training partnership program here at jobs central and I went to a secretary school. Years later I'm the executive assistant to the president of the agency (shrugs). Interesting (laughs).

My mother used to tell me all the time, "Why do you always go for the underdog? It was because the underdog is who needed me. The people who don't have anything, that's who I have to fight for and that's who I've fought for my entire life. I started taking my children and telling my children the military is a good option; I can't afford to have you go to college, I can't pay your way, financial aid will not help you, so I as a mother started teaching my children about the options that the military could do. ... They would take them around the world, they would see all of the things that I as a mother could not let them see, they would pay for their education as I as their mother and their father could not pay for.

NARRATOR: The military is a good option for kids in Flint.

LILA LISCOMB: The military is an excellent option for people in the city of Flint.

NARRATOR: (at a training technology center) How many of you have a friend or a family member in the service? (men raise hands) Anybody currently serving overseas? (men answer "Germany," "Iraq," etc.)

POTENTIAL RECRUIT: There's like an army or navy recruiter that's up there almost every week. It's in the lunchroom, recruiting students from the lunchroom.

(Army National Guard commercial)

STUDENT #1: I'm going into the Air Force myself, I'm goin' to take the year off probably after high school and then just go and make a career. I wanna be an aircraft maintenance technician.

STUDENT #2: I ran into a recruiter and, uh, there was something I noticed about it and this is kind of on another, it's just, I noticed it was odd. It was more like he was hiring me for a job than recruiting me for the army. It was the way he approached me... approached a friend of mine. ... It was at Borders Books & Music. (video of car ride) He just came up, it was, it was his business card. He had business cards made for the army and everything.

(video of Marines walking towards a Wal-Mart)

NARRATOR: Meet Marine Staff Sgt. Dale Cortman and Sgt. Raymond Flower. They are two of the many recruiters assigned to Flint, Michigan. They're very busy these days.

MARINE #1: (about man jogging) Look at him, he's runnin' around already.

MARINE #2: Yeah. Whatta we got here?

MARINE #1: A little gangsta.

MARINE #2: Yeah. Probably going over to the Courtland Mall now.

NARRATOR: They decided not to go to the wealthier Genesee Valley Mall in the suburbs. They have a hard time recruiting people there. Instead, they went to the other mall.

MARINE #1: Let's go in through Mervin's. And then we'll walk...

MARINE #2: ... straight down...

MARINE #1: ... straight back...

(cut to them walking through the parking lot, approaching two young men)

MARINE #1: Gents, you know we're looking at ya, right?

MARINE #2: You guys ever think about joining up?

PROSPECT: Thought about goin' to college to play basketball or something like that.

MARINE #1: You gonna do it?

PROSPECT: I think, oh yeah, especially to play basketball.

MARINE #1: Good. You can play ball for the Marine Corps as well, travel around the world, gettin' on Marine Corps basketball teams. David Robinson was in the military as well.


MARINE #1: Yep. So you can definitely hook it up.

(cut away)

MARINE: Right now there's somebody out there who wants to be a Marine but has no idea how to do it.

(cut back)

MARINE #2: Where do you work at?

PROSPECT: I work at KFC.

MARINE #2: Really? You can hook us up with some deals?


(cut away)

MARINE: They're waitin' to get recruited.

(cut back)

PROSPECT: I don't know, I'm probably gonna try to get a little career in music or somethin'.

MARINE #1: Career in music. Maybe we can get you a career in music. You know what the Marines go for -- I'm sure you know who Shaggy is, right? (picture of Shaggy)


MARINE #1: You know anything about him?

PROSPECT: Yeah, he's a Jamaican, uh, yeah...

MARINE #1: How about a former Marine?


MARINE #1: Did you know it? ... You definitely need to know a discipline if you're gonna get into music, especially discipline with the money. If you're makin' money you need to manage that money. So come in the office, we can sit down and talk... show you everything we know about the Marines. Sound like a plan?

MARINE #2: What do you got goin' on later this afternoon? ... How about tomorrow? ... Say around ten o'clock Monday morning?

PROSPECT: Yeah, that sounds pretty good.

MARINE #1: Want me to come pick you up?

(cut away)

MARINE #2: Better to get 'em when they're one's and two's...

MARINE #1: Hey pal. / Ladies, you ready to join up. / Oh, he's young, he's young. / We got two over here. Right over by the red van. / You go that way, I go this way, we'll corner 'em.


MARINE #1: You're in the ninth grade?

PROSPECT: Yes sir.

MARINE #1: Man, you look older than ninth grade. So, alright. Well, here's my card...


MARINE #2: You ever thought about bein' a Marine, man?

MAN: Uh, thought about it, but I got a wife and kid now.

MARINE #2: Even more reason to join.


MARINE #1: What I want to do man, real quick, is just get some information from you so I can scratch you off my list sayin' I've already talked to you and you're not interested. Is that cool?


MARINE #1: What's your name? / Phone number. / What's your address? / Add another one to the list.


MAN: However, you know, one would love to have the chance to experience college life you know and stuff young people can do without having the risk of dying in the process, I guess I can say candidly.

(subtitle "Iraq, Christmas Eve")

AMERICAN SOLDIER #14: The holidays do add a little bit more friction as opposed to just another night, in that we want to give our guys a little time off, a little time to relax. However, we are in a combat zone. My soldiers do recognize that fact.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #15: Everybody's a little bit nervous about it, I guess.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #16: We're professionals, we're gonna take care of you. I promise. (laugh)

AMERICAN SOLDIER #14: Every house here has the right to have weapons. The maximum is one AK-47. We always expect the targets to be armed.

AMERICAN SOLDIER #16: Rock and roll.

('Santa Claus is Coming to Town' playing on radio)

(camera follows some soldiers around... music interrupted by gunfire)

part i
FAHRENHEIT 9/11 - Part I/II - part II


(fireworks appear, fireworks sound starts... Florida Victory party scene. People holding Gore/Lieberman signs)

NARRATOR: Was it all just a dream?

AL GORE: God bless you, Florida. Thank you!

NARRATOR: Did the last four years not really happen? Look, there's Ben Affleck. He's often in my dreams. And the taxi driver guy. He was there too. And little Stevie Wonder, he seemed so happy, like a miracle had taken place. Was it a dream? Or was it real? It was election night 2000 and everything seemed to be going as planned.

Series of news clips: In New York, Al Gore is our projected winner. / The Garden State is green for Gore. / We project that Mr. Gore is the winner in Delaware. This state has voted with the winner in... / (Tom Brokaw interrupts) Mike, you know I wouldn't do this if it weren't big: Florida goes for Al Gore. / CNN announces that we call Florida in the Al Gore column.

NARRATOR: Then something called the Fox News Channel called the election in favor of the other guy.

BRIT HUME: Sorry to interrupt you; Fox News now projects George W. Bush the winner in Florida and thus it appears the winner of the Presidency of the United States.

NARRATOR: All of a sudden the other networks said, "Hey, if Fox said it, it must be true."

TOM BROKAW: All of us networks made a mistake and projected Florida in the Al Gore column. It was our mistake.

NARRATOR: Now what most people don't know is that the man who was in charge of the decision desk at Fox that night, the man who called it for Bush was none other than Bush's first cousin, John Ellis. How does someone like Bush get away with something like this?

(Cut to scene of Bush laughing)

NARRATOR: Well first, it helps if your brother is the Governor of the state in question.

GEORGE W. BUSH: You know something, we are gonna win Florida (cut to Jeb smiling), mark my words. You can write it down.

NARRATOR: Second, make sure the chairman of your campaign is also the vote count woman. And that her state has hired a company that's gonna knock voters off the roles who aren't likely to vote for you. You can usually tell 'em by the color of their skin. Then make sure your side fights like it's life or death.

JAMES BAKER: I think all of this talk about legitimacy is way overblown.

(Cut to Bush supporters)

NARRATOR: And hope that the other side will just sit by and wait for the phone to ring. And even if numerous independent investigations prove that Gore got the most votes...

JEFFREY TOBIN: If there was a statewide recount, under every scenario, Gore won the election.

NARRATOR: It won't matter, just so long as all of your daddy's friends on the Sue-preme Court vote the right way.

AL GORE: While I strongly disagree with the Court's decision, I accept it.

TOM DASCHLE: What we need now is acceptance. We have a new President-elect.

(cut back to Florida victory party scene, fireworks)

NARRATOR: Heh. It turns out none of this was a dream. It's what really happened. On the day the joint-session of both the House of Representatives and the Senate was to certify the election results, Al Gore, in his dual role as outgoing Vice President and President of the Senate, presided over the event that would officially annoint George W. Bush as the new President. If any Congressman wanted to raise an objection, the rules insisted that he or she had to have the signed support of just one Senator.

REP. ALCEE HASTINGS (on the floor): Mr. President (to Gore), and I take great pride in calling you that, um, I must object because of the overwhelming evidence of official misconduct, deliberate..

AL GORE: The chairman must remind members that under Section 18, Title 3 of the United States Code, no debate is allowed in the joint-session.

REP. ALCEE HASTINGS: Thank you Mr. President, to answer your question, Mr. President, the objection is in writing, signed by a number of members of the House of Representatives, but not by a member of the Senate.

REP. CORRINE BROWN: Uh, Mr. President it is in writing and signed by several House colleagues on behalf and myself of the twenty-seven thousand voters of Duval County in which sixteen thousand of them were African-Americans that was disenfranchised in this last election.

AL GORE: Is the objection signed by a member of the Senate?

REP. CORRINE BROWN: Not signed by a member of the Senate; the Senate is missin'.

REP. BARBARA LEE: Mr. President, it is in writing and signed by myself on behalf of many of the diverse constituents in our country, especially those of the 9th congressional district and all American voters who recognize that the Supreme Court, not the people of the United States, decided this election.

AL GORE: Is the objection signed by a Senator?

REP. BARBARA LEE: Unfortunately, Mr. President, it is not signed by one single senator.

REP. MINK: Unfortunately, I have no authority over the United States Senate and no Senator has signed.

REP. MEEK: Mr. President, it is in writing and signed by myself and several of my constituents from Florida. A Senator is needed, but missing.

AL GORE: Is the objection, uh, in writing and signed by a member of the House and a senator?

REP. MAXINE WATERS: The objection is in writing, and I don't care that it is not, is not signed by a Member of the Senate. (cheers, clapping)

AL GORE: The Chair will advise that the rules do care, uh, and (loud cheering, clapping) ...

NARRATOR: Not a single senator came to the aid of the African-Americans in Congress. One after another they were told to sit down and shut up.

REP. JACKSON: It's a sad day in America, Mr. President, when we can't find a Senator to sign these objections...

AL GORE: Gentleman will suspend (bangs gavel, Jackson continues talking), the gentleman will suspend.

DAN RATHER VOICEOVER: Inauguration coverage 2001 on a nasty but it could be worse kind of day in Washington.

(cut to protestors)

NARRATOR: On the day George W. Bush was inaugurated, tens of thousands of Americans poured into the streets of DC in one last attempt to claim what had been taken from them. They pelted Bush's limo with eggs and brought the inauguration parade to a halt. The plan to have Bush get out of the limo for the traditional walk to the White House was scrapped; Bush's limo hit the gas to prevent an even larger riot. No President had ever witnessed such a thing on his inauguration day. And for the next eight months it didn't get any better for George W. Bush. He couldn't get his judges appointed; he had trouble getting his legislation passed; and he lost Republican control of the Senate. His approval ratings in the polls began to sink. He was already beginning to look like a lame duck President. With everything going wrong he did what any of us would do -- he went on vacation.

(cut to Bush golfing, fishing; the song 'Vacation' playing. Cute)

NARRATOR: In his first eight months in office before September 11th, George W. Bush was on vacation, according to the Washington Post, forty-two percent of the time.

PRESIDENT BUSH: I hit every shot good; people would say I wasn't working.

NARRATOR: It was not surprising that Mr. Bush needed some time off. Being President is hard work.

REPORTER #1: Many folks say you're loafing here in Texas, that you're taking too long of a vacation.

PRESIDENT BUSH: They don't understand the definition of work. I'm getting a lot done. Secondly, you don't have to be in Washington to work. It's amazing what can happen with telephones, faxes, and...

REPORTER #2: What are you doing the rest of the day?

PRESIDENT BUSH: Uh, Karen Hughes is comin' over, we're workin' on some things. And uh, she'll be over here, we're workin' on these things. These matters. I'm workin' on some initiatives. We're uh... you'll see. There'll be some decisions I'm gonna make while I'm here and we'll be announcing them as time goes on. (looking around)

NARRATOR: The first I met him he had some good advice for me.

MICHAEL MOORE: Governor Bush, it's Michael Moore.

PRESIDENT BUSH: Behave yourself will ya; go find real work.

NARRATOR: And work was something he knew a lot about. (Bush slappin' grits onto a plate)

PRESIDENT BUSH: Anyone want some grits?

NARRATOR: Relaxing at Camp David. Yachting off Kennebunkport. Or being a cowboy on the ranch in Texas.

PRESIDENT BUSH: I love the nature; I love getting in the pickup truck with my dogs.

NARRATOR: George Bush spent the rest of August at the ranch where life was less complicated.

PRESIDENT BUSH: I love to dig the soil looking for bugs and uh, so um, I went out there the other day and there was Barny buried in this hole chasing an armadillo. (laughs)

NARRATOR: It was a summer to remember. And when it was over, he left Texas for his second favorite place (shaking hands with Jeb Bush; 'September 10,2001' caption in lower left corner). On September 10, he joined his brother in Florida where they looked at files and met important Floridians. He went to sleep that night in a bed made with fine French linens. (video of mom kissing boy goodnight)

(guitar strumming)

(microphone being pinned on Bush....)

DON RUMSFELD: You suppose he's pretty confident on those numbers on Iraqi security forces?

(Dick Cheney getting make-up put on)

--title: FAHRENHEIT 9/11 --

(Bush getting his hair combed)

(Condi Rice getting make-up put on)

(Paul Wolfowitz spitting on comb and dragging it through his hair, laughing)

(Colin Powell getting make-up put on)

JOHN ASHCROFT: Make me look young. (laughs / camera zooms in on his eyes) Yeah, I got a little bit of sort of ear noise. Don't turn it up too much, don't want it to blow my head off.

(Bush at his desk, listening to crew setting up microphones, wiping his brow)

(Tom Ridge laughing, wiping his nose)

(President looks up, looks away, smirks, nods)

(creepy guitar strumming ends)

(screen is black; you can hear the audio of the planes hitting the two towers of the WTC)

(fades in, woman crying.... bell ringing... people looking up in awe, gasping. Firefighters looking up. Woman sitting on curb with head in hands. Man crying. People praying. Debris falling. People running. Missing persons fliers.)

NARRATOR: On September 11th, 2001, nearly 3,000 people - including a colleague of mine, Bill Weems - were killed in the largest foreign attack ever on American soil. The targets were the financial and military headquarters of the United States.

GIRL HOLDING PICTURE: If anyone has any idea, have seen him, or knows where he is, to call us. He's got two little babies. Two little babies.

NARRATOR: As the attack took place, Mr. Bush was on his way to an elementary school in Florida. When informed of the first plane hitting the World Trade Center, where terrorists had struck just eight years prior, Mr. Bush decided to go ahead with this photo opportunity.

(Bush walking in, pictures flashing, he's smiling)

NARRATOR: When the second plane hit the tower, his Chief of Staff entered the classroom and told Mr. Bush the nation is under attack. (familiar scene of Andy Card leaning in, Bush grimacing, biting his lip) Not knowing what to do, with no one telling him what to do, and no Secret Service rushing in to take him to safety, Mr. Bush just sat there and continued to read 'My Pet Goat' with the children. (Bush looks visibly concerned... clock ticks away in the corner of the screen) Nearly seven minutes passed with nobody doing anything. (shot of Ari Fleischer, hangs his head) As Bush sat in that Florida classroom, was he wondering if maybe he should have shown up to work more often? Should he have held at least one meeting since taking office to discuss the threat of terrorism with his head of counter terrorism? (shot of Dick Clarke) Or maybe Mr. Bush was wondering why he had cut terrorism funding from the FBI. (scroll of highlighted document, 'Counterterrorism Equipment' highlighted) Or perhaps he just should have read the security briefing that was given to him on August 6, 2001 that said that Osama bin Laden was planning to attack America by hijacking airplanes. (shot of Bush at a meeting, date-stamped August 6, 2001) Or maybe he wasn't worried about the terrorist threat because the title of the report was too vague.

CONDOLEEZA RICE: I believe the title of the report was 'Bin Laden Determined to Attack Inside the United States.'

NARRATOR: A report like that might make some men jump, but as in days passed, George W. just went fishing. As the minutes went by, George Bush continued to sit in the classroom. Was he thinking, 'I've been hanging out with the wrong crowd. Which one of them screwed me? (cut to video of Rumsfeld meeting with Saddam Hussein in 1983) Was it the man my daddy's friends delivered a lot of weapons to? (cut to picture of "Taliban Leaders") Was it that group of religious fundamentalists who visited my state when I was governor? (cut to picture of the President and Saudi Royal Prince) Or was it the Saudis? Damn, it was them. I think I'd better blame it on this guy (video of Saddam Hussein smoking a cigar, dancing).'

In the days following September 11th, all commercial and private airline traffic was grounded.

VOICEOVER: The FAA has taken action to close all of the airports in the United States.

VOICEOVER: Even grounding the President's father, former President Bush, on a flight forced to land in Milwaukee. Dozens of travelers stranded, among them, Ricky Martin, due to perform at tonight's Latin Grammy awards.

NARRATOR: Not even Ricky Martin would fly. But really, who wanted to fly? No one. Except the bin Ladens.

(video of plane taking off... song, "We've got to get out of this place")

SEN. BYRON DORGAN: We had some airplanes authorized at the highest levels of our government to fly to pick up Osama bin Laden's family members and others from Saudi Arabia; transport them out of this country.

NARRATOR: It turns out that the White House approved planes to pick up the bin Ladens and numerous other Saudis. At least six private jets and nearly two dozen commercial plans carried the Saudis and the bin Ladens out of the U.S. after September 13th. In all, 142 Saudis, including 24 members of the bin Laden family, were allowed to leave the country.

(video of Osama bin Laden)

CRAIG UNGER: Osama has always been portrayed as the bad apple, the black sheep of the family and that they cut off all relationship with him around 1994. In fact things are much more complicated than that.

NARRATOR: You mean Osama has had contact with other family members?

CRAIG UNGER: That's right. In the summer of 2001 just before 9/11 one of Osama's sons got married in Afghanistan and several family members showed up at the wedding.

NARRATOR: Bin Ladens?

CRAIG UNGER: That's right. They have not cut off completely; that's really an exaggeration.

LARRY KING: We now welcome to Larry King Live, it's good to see him again, Prince Bandar, the Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to the United States.

PRINCE BANDAR: We have about twenty-four members of bin Laden's family and uh...


PRINCE BANDER: In America. Students and his majesty felt it was not fair for those innocent people to be subjected to any harm. On the other hand, we understood had the high emotions. So in cooperation with the FBI, we got them out.

NARRATOR: This is retired FBI agent Jack Cloonan. Before 9/11 he was a senior agent on the joint FBI-CIA al Qaeda task force.

JACK CLOONAN: I as an investigator would not want these people to have left. ... I think in the case of the bin Laden family I think it would have been prudent, hand the subpoenas out, have 'em come in, get on the record. You know, get on the record.

NARRATOR: That's the proper procedure.

JACK CLOONAN: Yeah. ... How many people were pulled off of the airlines after that coming into the country who were what, that were from the Middle East or they fit a very general picture.

NARRATOR: We held hundreds of, ...

JACK CLOONAN: We held hundreds and I...

NARRATOR: ...weeks and months at a time.

(cut to Craig Unger)

NARRATOR: Did the authorities do anything when the bin Ladens tried to leave the country?

CRAIG UNGER: No, they were identified at the airport, they looked at their passports, and they were identified.

NARRATOR: But that's what would happen to you or I if we were...

CRAIG UNGER: Exactly. Exactly.

NARRATOR: "So a little interview, check the passport, what else?"

UPDATE 6/30: The previous line had read NARRATOR: So what did they do, they checked the passports, what else? Credit here for the correction.)


(cut to Dragnet song)

NARRATOR: I don't know about you, but usually when the police can't find a murderer don't they usually want to talk to the family members to find out where they think he might be?

JOE FRIDAY: You have no idea where your husband might be? / Well if you hear anything let us know, will ya? / You willing to come downtown and give us a statement? / This gonna take a while? 'You got the time.' Mine's worth money, yours isn't. ... I asked you a question. 'You're gonna answer 'em not ask 'em.' Now listen to me cop I pay your salary. 'Alright, sit down, I'm gonna earn it.'

NARRATOR: Yeah, that's how cops do it. What was goin' on here?

SEN. BYRON DORGAN: I think we need to know a lot more about that. That needs to be the subject of a significant investigation. What happened? How did it happen? Why did it happen? And who authorized it?

JACK CLOONAN: Try to imagine what those poor bastards were feeling when they jumped outta that building to their death. Those those those young guys and cops ran into that building, never asked a question, and they're dead. And their families’ lives are ruined. And they'll never have peace. And if I had to inconvenience a member of the bin Laden family with a subpoena or a grand jury do you think I'd lose any sleep over it? Not for a minute, Mike.

NARRATOR: And no one would question it.

JACK CLOONAN: No, it's right...

NARRATOR: Not even the biggest civil libertarians?


NARRATOR: No one would question it.

JACK CLOONAN: It's just, ya know, you get a lawyer and fine, counselor fine. Mr. bin Laden this is why I'm asking you; it's not because I think it's you're anything, I just want to ask you the questions that I would anybody.


JACK CLOONAN: And that's all.

NARRATOR: None of this made any sense. (Marine One coming down to the White House) Can you imagine in the days following the Oklahoma City terrorist bombing President Clinton helping to arrange a trip out of the country for the McVeigh family? What do you think would have happened to Clinton if that had been revealed?

(cut to b&w scene, "Burn him," Puritans holding torches)

LARRY KING: Bandar, do you know the bin Laden family?

PRINCE BANDAR: I do very well.

LARRY KING: What are they like?

PRINCE BANDAR: They're really lovely human beings; uh, he is the only one I never, I don't know well. I met him only once.

LARRY KING: What was the circumstance under which you met him?

PRINCE BANDAR: This is ironic, and uh, in the mid-80s, if you remember, we and the United States were supporting the Mujhadeen to liberate Afghanistan from the Soviets. He came to thank me for my efforts to bring the Americans, our friends, to help us against the atheists, he said the communists.

LARRY KING: He came to thank you for helping bring America to help him? And now he may be responsible for bombing America.

PRINCE BANDAR: Absolutely.

LARRY KING: What do you make of him when you met him?

PRINCE BANDAR: I was not impressed, to be honest with you.

LARRY KING: Not impressed.

PRINCE BANDAR: No. He was simple and quiet guy.

(cut to picture of President Bush in Florida classroom)

NARRATOR: Hmmm. A simple and quiet guy. Whose family who just happened to have a business relationship with the family of George W. Bush. Is that what he was thinking about? Because if the public knew this it wouldn't look very good. Was he thinking, 'You know, I need a big black marker.'
In early 2004, in a speech during the New Hampshire primary, I called George W. Bush a deserter for his time in the Texas National Guard. In response, the White House released his military records in the hopes of disproving the charge. What Bush didn't know is that I already had a copy of his military records - uncensored - obtained in the year 2000. And there is one glaring difference between the records released in 2000 and those he released in 2004. (image of "records," black marks) A name had been blacked out. In 1972, two airmen were suspended for failing to take their medical examination. One was George W. Bush. And the other was James R. Bath. In 2000 the documents show both names. But in 2004 Bush and White House had Bath's name blacked out. Why didn't Bush want the press and public to see Bath's name on his military records? Perhaps he was worried that the American people would find out that at one time James R. Bath was the Texas money manager for the bin Ladens.

Bush and Bath had become good friends when they both served in the Texas National Guard. After they were discharged, when Bush's dad was head of the CIA, Bath opened up his own aviation business, after selling a plane to a man named Salem bin Laden, heir to the second largest fortune in Saudi Arabia: the Saudi bin Laden Group.

JAMES MOORE: W at that time was just starting out in the world as a business man. Because he's a guy who’s always tried to emulate his father, uh, he decided to go into the oil business. He founded an oil company, a drilling company, out of west Texas called Arbusto, which was very very good at drilling dry holes that nothing came out of. But the question has always been where did this money come from? Now his dad was rich. His dad could have done this for him. But his dad didn't do this for him. There's no indication that his daddy wrote a check to start him off in this company.

NARRATOR: So where did George W. Bush get his money? One person who did invest in him was James R. Bath. (cut to "Trust Agreement") Bush's good friend James Bath was hired by the bin Laden family to manage their money in Texas and invest in businesses. (zoom in on 'Salem bin Laden' signature) And James Bath himself in turn invested in George W. Bush. Bush ran Arbusto into the ground, as he did every other company he was involved in. Until finally one of his companies was bought by Harken Energy. And they gave him a seat on their board.

JAMES MOORE: A lot of us have suspected through the years that, that there has been Saudi oil money involved in all of these companies: Harken, Spectrum 7, Arbusto Drilling, all of the Bush companies. Whenever they got into trouble there were these angel investors who flowed money into the companies.

CRAIG UNGER: So the question is why would Saudis with all the oil in the world go around the globe to invest in this lousy oil company? And the thing is it had one big asset, Harken, Harken had one thing going for it which is that George W. Bush was on its board of directors at a time when his father was President of the United States.

GEORGE W. BUSH: (caption 'August 1992') When you're the President's son and you've got unlimited access combined with some credentials from a prior campaign, in Washington DC people tend to respect that; I mean, access is power and, uh, I can find my dad, talk to him any time of the day.

(picture of George W. Bush by a Harken sign)

NARRATOR: Yes, it helps to be the Presidents son. Especially when you're being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

REPORTER: In 1990 when M. Bush was a director of Harken Energy he received this memo from company lawyers warning directors not to sell stock if they had unfavorable information about the company. One week later he sold $848,000 worth of Harken stock. Two months later, Harken announced losses of more than $23 million dollars.

NARRATOR: The James Baker law partner who helped Bush beat the wrap from the SEC was a man by the name of Robert Jordan who, when George W became President, was appointed ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

(Bush and friends drinking, throwing horse shoes)

NARRATOR: After the Harken debacle the friends of Bush's dad got him a seat on another board of a company owned by the Carlyle Group.

DAN BRIODY: We wanted to look at which companies um actually gained from September 11th. Turned up this company Carlyle Group. The Carlyle Group is a multinational conglomerate that invests in heavily government regulated industries like telecommunications, health care, and particularly defense. Both George W. Bush and George H.W. Bush worked for the Carlyle Group, the same company that counted the bin Laden family among its investors.

The Carlyle Group was holding its annual investor conference on the morning of September 11th in the Ritz Carlton hotel in Washington, DC. At that meeting were all of the Carlyle regulars: James Baker likely, John Major, definitely George H.W. Bush though he left the morning of September 11th. Shapfi (sp) bin Laden, who is Osama bin Laden's half brother, um, and was in town to look after his family's investments in the Carlyle Group -- all of them together in one room watching as the um, the planes hit the towers. And then in fact the bin Laden family was invested in one of their defense funds which, ironically, meant as the United States started increasing its defense spending, um, the bin Laden family stood to gain from those investments through the Carlyle Group.

NARRATOR: Of all the weapons companies it owned, the Carlyle Group was in essence the 11th largest defense contractor in the United States. It owned United Defense, makers of the Bradley Armored Fighting Vehicle. September 11th guaranteed that United Defense was going to have a very good year.

Just six weeks after 9/11, Carlyle filed to take United Defense public, and in December, made a one day profit of $237 million dollars. But sadly, with so much attention focused on the bin Laden family being important Carlyle investors, the bin Ladens eventually had to withdraw. Bush's dad though stayed on as senior advisor to Carlyle's Asia board for another two years.

DAN BRIODY: As unassuming as it seems, uh, to, uh, to, to know that George H.W. Bush was meeting with the bin Laden family while Osama was a wanted terrorist, um, well before September 11th, it's very discomforting for Americans to know that.

George H.W. Bush is a man who has obviously incredible reach into the White House. Um, he receives daily CIA briefings, which is the right of any ex-President, but very few ex-Presidents actually exercise that right -- uh, he does. And I think in a very real way they are benefiting from the confusion that arises when George H.W. Bush visits Saudi Arabia on behalf of Carlyle and meets with the royal family and meets with the bin Laden family. Is he representing the United States of America or is he representing an investment firm in the United States of America, or is he representing both? This company's about money. It's not about conspiracies to run the world or engineer political maneuvering, things like that; it's about making money and it's about making a lot of money. And they have done very well.

VOICE OF HELEN THOMAS: (camera on Ari Fleischer) I want you on the record on this question (or "I'll get you on the record on this question" -- it's unintelligible). In the White House view there is no ethical conflict in former President Bush and former Secretary of State Jim Baker using their contacts with world leaders to represent one of the most well-known military arms dealers, the Carlyle Group?

ARI FLEISCHER: The President has full faith that his family will conform with all proper ethics laws, all ethics laws, and will act properly in their conduct.

NARRATOR: Okay, so let's say one group of people, like the American people, pay you $400,000 a year to be President of the United States. But then another group of people invest in you, your friends, and their related businesses $1.4 billion dollars over a number of years. Who you gonna like? (video of President Bush and Saudi Prince) Who's your daddy? Because that's how much the Saudi royals and their associates have given the Bush family. Their friends. And their related businesses in the past three decades. Is it rude to suggest that when the Bush family wakes up in the morning they might be thinking about what's best for the Saudis instead of what's best for you? Or me? 'Cuz $1.4 billion doesn't just buy a lot of flights out of the country, it buys a lot of love.

(pictures of President Bush, George H.W. Bush, and admin officials and Saudi royals holding, shaking hands)

NARRATOR: Sooner or later this special relationship with a regime that Amnesty International condemns as a wide-spread human rights violator (cut to video of public beheading) would come back to haunt the Bushes. Now, after 9/11, it was an embarrassment and they preferred that no one ask any questions.

CAROL ASHLEY: The investigation should have begun on September 12th; there's no reason why it shouldn't have. Three thousand people were dead, it was a murder, and it should have gotten started immediately.

NARRATOR: First, Bush tried to stop Congress from setting up its own 9/11 investigation.

PRESIDENT BUSH: It's important for us to not reveal how we collect information; that's what the enemy wants. And we're fighting an enemy.

NARRATOR: When he couldn't stop Congress, he then tried to stop an independent 9/11 commission from being formed.

REPORTER: The President's position was a break from history. Independent investigations were launched within days of Pearl Harbor and President Kennedy's assassination.

NARRATOR: But when Congress did complete its own investigation, the Bush White House censored twenty-eight pages of the report.

REPORTER: The President is being pressed by all sides to declassify the report. US officials tell NBC news most of the secret sources involve Saudi Arabia.

PRESIDENT BUSH: We have given extraordinary cooperation with Chairmen Kean and Hamilton.

THOMAS H. KEAN: We haven't gotten the materials we needed, and we certainly haven't gotten them in a timely fashion. The deadlines we set have passed.

TIM RUSSERT: Will you testify before the commission?

PRESIDENT BUSH: This commission? Testify, I mean, I'd be glad to visit with them.

ROSEMARY DILLARD: What it will do is hold this in my heart, it has been in my heart since September 11th. I lost my husband, 15 years. I'm now by myself. Um, I need to know what happened to him. I know what I got back from the autopsy. That man was my life and I have no plan. I'd taken a class and they asked me what was I gonna do in the next five years. And if I'm not doing something with this, I don't know what reason I have to live. So, it's very important. Very important. 'Kay.

NARRATOR: Ignored by the Bush administration, more than 500 relatives of 9/11 victims filed suit against Saudi royals and others. The lawyers the Saudi defense minister hired to fight the 9/11 families? The law firm of Bush family confidante, James A. Baker.

MICHAEL MOORE: So right here in the center of three important American landmarks, uh, the Watergate hotel and office building, the Kennedy Center over there, and uh, the embassy of Saudi Arabia.

: Wow. (chuckle)

MICHAEL MOORE: How much money do the Saudis have invested in America, roughly?

: Uh, I've heard figures inside of $860 billion dollars.

MICHAEL MOORE: 860 billion.

: Billion.

MICHAEL MOORE: That's a lot of money. And uh, what percentage of our economy is that? That seems like a lot.

: Well, in terms of investments on Wall Street, American equities, it's roughly six or seven percent of America. They own a fairly good slice of America. And most of that money goes into the great blue chip companies: Citigroup, Citibank is the largest stock held by the Saudis. AOLTimeWarner has big Saudi investors.

MICHAEL MOORE: So I read where like the Saudis have a trillion dollars in our banks of their money. What would happen if like one day they just pulled that trillion dollars out?

: A trillion dollars, that would be an enormous blow to the economy.

(uniformed Secret Service agents comes up)

OFFICER: Could I speak with you for a moment please, sir?

MICHAEL MOORE: Uh yeah, sure.

OFFICER: Good, how are you doing?

MOORE: Good [or something to that effect]

(Moore and officer shake hands)

OFFICER: Steve [something] with the Secret Service. [something else unintelligible] We're just ascertaining information regarding, are you making a documentary regarding the Saudi Arabian embassy?

MICHAEL MOORE: Uh, no. I am doing a documentary. And part of it is about Saudi Arabia.

NARRATOR: Even though we were nowhere near the White House, for some reason the Secret Service had shown up to ask us what we were doing standing across the street from the Saudi embassy.

MICHAEL MOORE: We're not here to cause any trouble or anything. Uh, ya know, is that...

OFFICER: That's fine. Just wanted to get some information on what was going on.

MICHAEL MOORE: Yeah yeah yeah, I didn't realize the Secret Service guards foreign embassies.

OFFICER: Uh, not usually, no sir.

MICHAEL MOORE: No no, do they give you any trouble? The Saudis?

OFFICER: Uh, no comment on that one, I'm not going to answer.

MICHAEL MOORE: Uh, okay, I'll take that as a yes.

(they say their goodbyes)

NARRATOR: It turns out that Saudi Prince Bandar is perhaps the best protected ambassador in the US. The US State Department provides him with a six-man security detail. Considering how he and his family, and the Saudi elite own seven percent of America, it's probably not a bad idea. Prince Bandar is so close to the Bushes they consider him a member of the family, and they even have a nickname for him: Bandar Bush. Two nights after September 11th, George Bush invited Bandar Bush to the White House for a private dinner and talk. Even though bin Laden was a Saudi, and Saudi money had funded al Qaeda, and fifteen of the nineteen hijackers were Saudis, here was the Saudi ambassador casually dining with the President. On September 13th, what were they talking about? Were they commiserating? Or comparing notes? Why would Bandar's government block American investigators from talking to the relatives of the fifteen hijackers? Why would Saudi Arabia become reluctant to freeze the hijackers' assets?

The two of them rocked out on the Truman Balcony so that Bandar could smoke a cigar and have a drink. In the distance, across the Potomac, was the Pentagon, partially in ruins. I wonder if Mr. Bush told Prince Bandar not to worry because he already had a plan in motion.

part II