As the 20th anniversary of 9/11 approaches, I'm sure there will be a glut of films and documentaries re-examining the events of that awful day. This ninety minute fly-on-the-wall documentary took us through the fateful 24 hours from the collective point of view of the American Executive and in particular President George W Bush as he and the rest of his team watch and somehow have to react disbelievingly to the events as they occur. There's notably no comment on how the aftermath played out subsequently with the U. S. invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, which is ironic of course given current events as we now see the seismic impact of the U. S. and U. K controversial withdrawal of their armed forces from Afghanistan. This documentary then focuses exclusively on how Bush and his senior aides coped on a day when all their nightmares came true and while the rest of us could only watch in horror, he and they had to make instant decisions to both protect and pacify the rest of their country and indeed the rest of the world.
I remember at the time there was some satirical jibing on U. K. TV about Bush's befuddled initial reaction on being told, while attending a children's primary school, that America was under attack, but while I'm no great admirer of the president's time in office, I can't imagine any human being reacting very differently to such shocking news. It has to be said however, that with the active participation of the president and his staff in this film, there was never going to be much critical comment on their actions here, so we hear nothing about the failures in U. S. Intelligence which failed to anticipate the attacks and instead we end up with a lionising tribute to the President by all and sundry when to be honest, he reacted pretty much as you'd expect him to.
I was amazed at the televisual access on the day to Bush in particular but also the Vice President Dick Cheney and other senior government officials, with it seems video or still photographic depictions of their almost every move in reaction to the chaotic events. There were some interesting reveals along the way, such as Condoleeza Rice's briefing of Russian President Putin or the mistaken belief that the President's jet Air Force One was itself under attack. While there was little room for the background stories of the slain or the heroism of the rescue services, there was the sad retelling of the death of the wife of the U. S. Attorney General who was actually on board one of the four planes used in the attacks, who the night before had left a touching birthday note on her husband's pillow as he slept.
There possibly is a more critical programme to be made on how the events of 9(11 could conceivably have been prevented in the first place or the unforeseen consequences right up to the present day of Bush's self-justified gung-ho reaction to events but there was certainly never any chance that he was going to regret, at least on camera, any of his subsequent decisions. However, critical as I may be of him in other ways, I'm going to cut the man some slack on what was a cataclysmic day. As he says himself at the close, his ends justified the means as there have been no further atrocities carried out in mainland America since then.
That said, he may yet live to rue those words if a Taliban-run Afghanistan does indeed become, as is now feared, a future breeding ground for American-targeted terrorist attacks in the future...
9/11: Inside the President's War Room
9/11: Inside the President's War Room
9/11 from the President's perspective, with exclusive access to information from the one's that had to take decisions during the World Trade Center's attack.
Uploaded By: FREEMAN
September 01, 2021 at 06:03 PM