Home > Federal, National > Homeland Security Chair Seeks Probe into Administration-Sanctioned Bin Laden Movie; Classified leaks (and hypocrisy); Fine line between “the free press” and (collusion) and “state run media”; FAVORS: Sony Hosted Obama Fundraiser, Releasing Bin Laden Movie Before Election!

Homeland Security Chair Seeks Probe into Administration-Sanctioned Bin Laden Movie; Classified leaks (and hypocrisy); Fine line between “the free press” and (collusion) and “state run media”; FAVORS: Sony Hosted Obama Fundraiser, Releasing Bin Laden Movie Before Election!

August 12, 2011

A fine line between “the free press” and (collusion) and “state run media”

GOP Rep Calls for Pentagon Probe Over Cooperation With Hollywood Movie About bin Laden Raid 

Twist #1: The Pentagon confirmed it‘s giving mission information to the film’s screenwriter Mark Boal and director Kathryn Bigelow. Except why, wondered New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd, would “an administration that has tried to throw more people in jail for leaking classified information than the Bush administration” now be so accommodating?

Twist #2: Why is the Pentagon helping Bigelow and Boal when, Fox reported, a Department of Defense-sanctioned Army adviser pulled out at the last minute from work on The Hurt Locker after learning of several scenes the DOD hadn’t authorized? (Could be important to note that President Bush, not Obama, was in office when The Hurt Locker was being made.)

Twist #3: The new movie’s planned release date is October 12, 2012. Just a few short weeks prior to the presidential election. Dowd “The White House is also counting on the Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal big-screen version of the killing of Bin Laden to counter Obama’s growing reputation as ineffectual.”

Homeland Security Chairman Seeks Probe into Administration-Sanctioned Bin Laden Movie

By  Published August 10, 2011 | FoxNews.com

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In a letter to the inspectors general of the Defense Department and CIA, U.S. Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., wrote that the administration’s first duty in declassifying material is to provide full reporting to Congress and the American people to build public trust through transparency of government. “In contrast, this alleged collaboration belies a desire of transparency in favor of a cinematographic view of history,” King wrote.

The chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee is calling for an investigation into the Obama administration’s granting of high-level access to filmmakers re-creating the U.S. special operation forces mission that killed Usama bin Laden.

In a letter to the inspectors general of the Defense Department and CIA, U.S. Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., wrote that the administration’s first duty in declassifying material is to provide full reporting to Congress and the American people to build public trust through transparency of government.

“In contrast, this alleged collaboration belies a desire of transparency in favor of a cinematographic view of history,” King wrote in the Aug. 9 letter.

The movie is the creation of Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal, who won an Oscar for their portrayal of an Iraq war bomb squad in “The Hurt Locker.” In a New York Times column that appeared Sunday, columnist Maureen Dowd noted that the White House was counting on the “big-screen version of the killing of bin Laden to counter Obama’s growing reputation as ineffectual.”

Dowd added that the pair had gotten “top-level access” to the mission and the projected October 2012 release date is “perfectly timed to give a home-stretch boost to a campaign that has grown tougher.”

“Our upcoming film project about the decade long pursuit of Bin Laden has been in the works for many years and integrates the collective efforts of three administrations,” a public relations representative for the film and Mark Boal said in a statement. “This was an American triumph, both heroic, and non-partisan and there is no basis to suggest that our film will represent this enormous victory otherwise.”

The Pentagon confirmed Wednesday that it is cooperating with the project.

“This film project is only in the script development phase, and DoD is providing assistance with script research, which is something we commonly do for established filmmakers,” Pentagon spokesman Col. Dave Lapan said. “Until there is a script to review, and a request for equipment or other DoD support, there is no formal agreement for DoD support.”

A CIA spokeswoman said the agency’s goal is an “accurate portrayal” of its mission.

“As part of our public outreach, this agency — like others in our government — has over the years engaged with writers, documentary filmmakers, movie and TV producers and others in the entertainment industry,” Marie Harf said. “Our goal is an accurate portrayal of the men and women of the CIA, their vital mission and the commitment to public service that defines them.”

However, Fox News has learned that when the Pentagon cooperated with Bigelow on “The Hurt Locker,” a Department of Defense-sanctioned Army adviser pulled out at the last minute because Bigelow added several scenes that had not been authorized, breaking the production assistance agreement.

Among the additional scenes not approved by the Pentagon were one in which a U.S.-armored Humvee with an American flag on it drove into a Palestinian refugee camp in Jordan to film “angry reaction” of the crowd. The directors also added scenes that showed U.S. military personnel abusing detainees.

King said he questioned whether military officials and the CIA will be able to screen the film before its release, whether the filmmakers access to CIA agents could blow their covers and how many tactics, techniques and agency methods could have been compromised.

Leaks of classified information regarding the bin Laden mission have already resulted in the arrests of Pakistanis who were believed by local authorities to have assisted the CIA with the May 1 raid, King noted.

Participation by the administration in making such a film is “bound to increase such leaks,” King’s letter continued.

But White Press Secretary Jay Carney characterized concerns that the U.S. is giving away its secrets or endangering its operations as “ridiculous.”

“We do not discuss classified information,” Carney told reporters on Wednesday. “I would hope that as we face a continued threat from terrorism, the House Committee on Homeland Security would have more important topics to discuss.”

Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer, a retired Army Reserve officer who served in Afghanistan from 2003 to 2004, said the “hugely bad idea” could potentially reveal classified material or specific techniques used to kill the Al Qaeda leader.

“It appears to me to be a political stunt,” Shaffer told FoxNews.com. “This is not going to benefit the SEALs. They have gotten all the benefits they need, thank you very much.

Shaffer also questioned the timing of the film’s release.

“The History Channel and the Military Channel do a great job in re-creations,” he told FoxNews.com. “So, the question is: Why this and not other relevant elements of the war? This is an anomaly. And who benefits from this? Does the SEAL team benefit? Does the Department of Defense? The only thing you need to ask yourself is, ‘Who benefits by the release in October?'”

Peter King Questions White House About Bin Laden Blockbuster

By Reid Pillifant 12:12pm

Peter King is not excited about the Hollywood version of the Seal Team Six mission that killed Osama bin Laden.

The full letter:

August 9, 2011

The Honorable Gordon S. Heddell
Inspector General
Department of Defense
400 Army Navy Drive
Arlington, VA  22202-4704

The Honorable David Buckley
Inspector General
Central Intelligence Agency
Washington, DC  20505

Dear Inspectors General Heddell and Buckley:

I write to express concern regarding ongoing leaks of classified information regarding sensitive military operations.  As reported in a New York Times column on August 6, 2011, Administration officials may have provided filmmakers with details of the raid that successfully killed Usama bin Laden (UBL).  According to that report, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Inc. and movie director Kathryn Bigelow received “top-level access to the most classified mission in history” to produce a movie about the raid, due for release in October 2012.  Reportedly, a Hollywood filmmaker also attended a CIA ceremony in honor of the team that carried out the raid.

The Administration’s first duty in declassifying material is to provide full reporting to Congress and the American people, in an effort to build public trust through transparency of government.  In contrast, this alleged collaboration belies a desire of transparency in favor of a cinematographic view of history.

Special Operations Command’s Admiral Eric Olson stated that the May 1st raid “was successful because nobody talked about it before, and if we want to preserve this capability nobody better talk about it after,” and that his operators’ “15 minutes of fame lasted about 14 minutes too long.  They want to get back in the shadows.”  Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Admiral Michael Mullen stated that “It is time to stop talking,” as “We have gotten to a point where we are close to jeopardizing the precision capability that we have, and we can’t afford to do that.  This fight isn’t over.”  Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates stated that “Too many people in too many places are talking too much about this operation, and when so much detail is available it makes that both more difficult and riskier” for such missions in the future.

Leaks of classified information regarding the bin Laden raid have already resulted, according to a June 15, 2011 article in the Washington Post, in the arrests of Pakistanis who were believed by local authorities to have assisted the CIA with the May 1st raid.  Further participation by JSOC and the Agency in making a film about the raid is bound to increase such leaks, and undermine these organizations’ hard-won reputations as “quiet professionals” − reputations important for their continued operational success.  And, the success of these organizations is vital to our continued homeland security.

Therefore, I request an investigation and classified briefing regarding this matter from the Defense Department’s and CIA’s Inspectors General, including but not limited to the following:

• What consultations, if any, occurred between members of the Executive Office of the President, and Department of Defense and/or CIA officials, regarding the advisability of providing Hollywood executives with access to covert military operators and clandestine CIA officers to discuss the UBL raid?

• Will a copy of this film be submitted to the military and CIA for pre-publication review, to determine if special operations tactics, techniques and procedures, or Agency intelligence sources and methods, would be revealed by its release?

• How was the attendance of filmmakers at a meeting with special operators and Agency officers at CIA Headquarters balanced against those officers’ duties to maintain their covers?  How will cover concerns be addressed going forward?

• What steps did the Administration take to ensure that no special operations tactics, techniques, and procedures were compromised during those meetings?

• To the extent possible to determine, how many human intelligence sources and how many Agency intelligence methods have been compromised due to leaks about the May 1st raid?  What effects have these compromises had on the CIA’s collection capabilities?  Will Agency participation in a film about the bin Laden raid add to or exacerbate the effects of these compromises?

If you have any questions, please contact Mr. Matthew McCabe, Senior Counsel for the Committee on Homeland Security, at (202) 226-8417.  Thank you for your time and consideration of this request.

Sincerely,

PETER T. KING
Chairman Homeland Security Committee

The Curious Case of the Osama-Obama Movie: Hollywood — But Not Politics — As Usual

A must read: Why the proposed Kathryn Bigelow-Mark Boal motion picture on the capture of Bin Laden is a quiet outrage.
August 12, 2011 – 12:01 am – by Lionel Chetwynd
 
obama osama “But the non-litigious Pentagon simply maintains a policy of subsequent non-cooperation with offenders. Everyone knows that, and that’s the deal. Which brings us to the Bigelow-Boal film The Hurt Locker. According to knowledgable sources in the American military, during the filming of The Hurt Locker Ms. Bigelow violated her agreement with the Pentagon”…
 
“Notwithstanding this, the filmmakers came back for Pentagon help in this new film and were granted two meetings with the under secretary of defense for intelligence, Michael Vickers, a senior political appointee. Of the Obama administration. To be given that level of access to the Pentagon after previous bad faith by the filmmakers is such a departure from current practice one is forced to suspect significant pressure was applied to the Pentagon by its civilian political masters.”…
 
“More troubling is the matter of release date. When depicting a sitting politician nothing is more sensitive than the moment chosen to put the product before the public…October 12. Just as the election is coming around the home stretch. A motion picture whose launch might well cost $75 million or more in publicity (to say nothing of enraptured stars on talk shows) will tell the story of a president who fearlessly succeeded where his predecessors failed. Aside from the stupidity of claiming the president had any other choice than to take OBL down (we’re told he took 16 hours on that no-brainer, which I expect will be the framing device of the film) the release date makes the claim of a non-partisan, disinterested drama pure fantasy, a beggaring of our common sense.”…

“There is so much more about this whole affair that is so dispiriting; we who work in the popular culture should remember we are stewards, custodians, who must be ever mindful of the power of what we do to influence events. The higher reaches of Sony, a foreign entity, might be less sensitive to this obligation that comes with the privilege of working in our industry. But those who run the company on a day-to-day basis, up to and including the chairman, know better. It may be good business to take advantage of the willingness of an administration obsessed by re-election to bend rules and use influence in an unseemly way.

But it is very poor citizenship.”

Rep. Peter King requests investigation of ‘administration-sanctioned’ bin Laden film– TheDC

Bin-Laden-Film
King requests investigation of ‘administration-sanctioned’ bin Laden film, scheduled for election season release
  
 
Also; do as I say – not as I do, violating more policy for propaganda!
 
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Carol A. Taber – No surer sign of Obama’s pathologically sick egocentrism can be found than this. More

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Pentagon did not know White House photographer would be present when bodies of U.S. troops returned


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