Friday, June 25, 2004

Byron York: "Democrats and the Fahrenheit 9/11 Trap"

Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe says he believes radical filmmaker Michael Moore's assertion that the United States went to war in Afghanistan not to avenge the terrorist attacks of September 11 but instead to assure that the Unocal Corporation could build a natural gas pipeline across Afghanistan for the financial benefit of Vice President Dick Cheney and former Enron chief Kenneth Lay.

McAuliffe and a number of other prominent Democrats attended a screening of Moore's new documentary, Fahrenheit 9/11, at the Uptown Theatre in Washington Wednesday night. McAuliffe called the film "very powerful, much more powerful than I thought it would be." When asked by National Review Online if he believed Moore's account of the war in Afghanistan, McAuliffe said, " I believe it after seeing that." The DNC chairman added that he had not heard of the idea before seeing the movie, but said he would "check it out myself and look at it, but there are a lot of interesting facts that he [Moore] brought out today that none of us knew about."

A short time later, McAuliffe was asked by CNN, "Do you think the movie was essentially fair and factually based?" "I do," McAuliffe said. "I think anyone who goes to see this movie will come out en masse and vote for John Kerry. Clearly the movie makes it clear that George Bush is not fit to be president of this country."

[. . .]

Since Fahrenheit 9/11 is so heavily identified with Democratic causes, it seems likely that a number of Democratic leaders, possibly including presidential candidate John Kerry, will be asked whether they endorse the conclusions of the movie. That could present a dilemma. To do so would mean associating with some of the least credible theories of the radical Left, while declining to do so would tend to undermine Moore's status as an anti-Bush hero.

Source: "Democrats and the Fahrenheit 9/11 Trap"
by Byron York. NRO, June 24, 2004.