Reviews of Fahrenheit 9/11

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Michael MooreI found this scathing review on Slate of Michael Moore and his upcoming flick, Fahrenheit 9/11 I have yet to see the movie but plan to soon. It’s good to read a critical review to make sure I have a balanced view of the movie.

If Michael Moore had had his way, Slobodan Milosevic would still be the big man in a starved and tyrannical Serbia. Bosnia and Kosovo would have been cleansed and annexed. If Michael Moore had been listened to, Afghanistan would still be under Taliban rule, and Kuwait would have remained part of Iraq. And Iraq itself would still be the personal property of a psychopathic crime family, bargaining covertly with the slave state of North Korea for WMD.

I don’t doubt that Michael Moore is biased and self-serving. His movie is designed to provoke a strong reaction, and whether the facts are misinterpreted or self-contradicting, that’s not important to his goals. I figure I will have to take his message with a grain of salt. Many will see his movie once, while they watch Fox news every day. The truth probably lies somewhere in the middle.

As a counterpoint to the scathing review, I offer up another review that points out the great lengths the Moore team went to fact check all their assertions. The review does point out that Moore does insert his prejudices in places, but that his central assertion is well-founded.

Moore is on firm ground in arguing that the Bushes, like many prominent Texas families with oil interests, have profited handsomely from their relationships with prominent Saudis, including members of the royal family and of the large and fabulously wealthy bin Laden clan, which has insisted it long ago disowned Osama.

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3 responses

  1. Avatar for Koba
    Koba June 23rd, 2004

    I find parts of that Slate review to be disingenuous. It makes the point that if Moore would (among other things of a supposed pacifist leaning) have allowed Saddam to keep Kuwait. However, I'm going to go out on a limb here and hypothesize that if Michael Moore were in charge of the White House, I'm pretty sure the U.S. would not have joined Germany and France in giving weapons to Uncle Saddam to fight the Iranians (and oppress those living within Iraq's borders). Apparently we are to believe that our aggression is better than (morally superior to) others' aggression.

    Anyway, would Hitchens have us believe that our current motivations in Iraq are wholly noble? Please, our soldiers are sitting on the 1/9th of the world’s proven oil reserves. End of story.

  2. Avatar for Haacked
    Haacked June 23rd, 2004

    I fully agree. And upon reflection I think it's wholly acceptable that Moore tries to have it "both ways" regarding his opposition to sending troops and then later complaining we didn't send enough.

    There's nothing wrong with saying, let's not go to war, but if you do go to war over my objections, then you'd better do it right so that the objectives are met and our troops loss of life is minimized. By choosing to both go to war, and to half-ass it, the administration is deserving of mocking for both actions.

  3. Avatar for Koba
    Koba June 25th, 2004

    On the "both ways" issue...

    We're hearing a lot (and will certainly hear more) of this type of rhetoric from the Bush campaign this year. It's interesting to listen for it every time someone pro-Bush steps up to a microphone. Kerry will be portrayed as someone who "waffles" (flip-flops, is disingenuous, take your pick) on the issues. I can only assume that anyone siding with Kerry will also be labeled as such.

    What is disturbing to me with all this name-calling is the over-simplification required by this tactic. Rather than attempt to understand why someone's view might have multiple points (rejection of war, support of proper troop size if war is declared), an attempt is made to dismiss dissent with a sneer and a wave of the hand.