A chilling exposé of the lies about the war on Iraq
Andrew Olivo | Oregon, United States | 04/16/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Uncovered - The Whole Truth about the Iraq War" is a chilling exposé of the lies upon which the war on Iraq is based. This DVD reveals that the idea for war against Iraq came to the Bush administration on September 11th, 2001. They realized that the fear instilled in the US population by the terrorist attacks in New York and DC would be a wonderful way to mobilize the US population for war against Iraq. The only thing necessary was a justification, so they decided to mislead the US population into believing that Osama bin Laden and Saddam are partners, and that Iraq had nuclear capabilities that they planned to soon use against us. As this DVD reveals, these were all lies.
Most of the lies are by now well-known to those of us who were opposed to the war from the beginning: there are no weapons of mass destruction, Iraq was not gearing up for war with the US, Saddam and bin Laden are not partners and in fact opposed one another. But this documentary is still interesting because it contains the interviews of many people who have worked within the governmental and military system for decades, such as: former Ambassador Joe Wilson; weapons inspectors Scott Ritter and David Albright; anti-terrorism expert Rand Beers; former CIA analyst Ray McGovern, former CIA operative Robert Baer; and Washington editor of The Nation, David Corn. It's fascinating for me to see footage of people who are within the system, believe in the system, and yet are willing to come forward and speak out against Bush and the war on Iraq. For example, John Dean, former White House counsel, comments on the lies Bush told to Congress about Iraq's nuclear capabilities, explaining that it is a federal felony, a crime, to distort information that you present to congress.
I was also struck by the juxtaposition of archival footage, gleaned from a variety of talk shows and public addresses, of Bush, Powell, Rice, and other White House representatives, telling their lies and uttering their buzz words and catch phrases. Asking such ridiculous questions as, "Why should we wait for that smoking gun in the form of a mushroom cloud?" During the buildup to war I had avoided watching such addresses, (because I knew it was all nonsense) so it is interesting to now see such footage. It is so easy to see how all these appearances were scripted. Bush, Rice, Powell, and company, all come across as robots, shells of human beings. It made me wonder what it was like to lie to a nation, the entire world even, knowing that your lies would result in the deaths of thousands: about 10,000 innocent Iraqi civilians have been killed, and nearly 700 US soldiers have since been killed. It's a chilling thing to imagine. I don't know how they can sleep at night.
The documentary closes with some wonderful commentary on patriotism and all the propaganda we heard that those of us who oppose the war are traitors, that if you oppose the war then you are not supporting the troops. Milt Bearden, former CIA Station Chief in Pakistan with 30 years of service, comments that unlike just about anyone who holds office in the US, he has two sons who served in the military and even went into combat. In Mr. Bearden's words, "I don't have to take any such nonsense on this. And I won't.""
A lot of good information, but...
GLBT | Illinois | 03/14/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"In the beginning of this 1 hour documentary, we are very quickly introduced to the 20 or so experts who will be giving their testimony throughout the film. It's done quickly, but after the first 5 or so it becomes a sort of blur and you want to say, "Wait.. slow down..."The whole film is sort of like that. There's a LOT of good information in "Uncovered." It makes its case well, by calling upon people from within the CIA and within the government to tell their stories. It also does a very effective job of showing how the Bush administration changed its story over time, and how things that were originally said to be true were then de-emphasized and then finally denied completely. The problem I have with this documentary is that it throws so much at the viewer so quickly that it weakens the impact of each successive piece. In the interview with the director (in the Bonus Material section of the DVD) he talks about having had only a few months to put all this information together and how frantic the pace was to get it done on time. Frankly, it shows. What I would really like to see is this same information taken and put into some kind of cohesive narrative, and rather than compressing it all into one hour, give it the time that it deserves and make it a 2 hour film. Let us hear the testimonies of these people with a bit more depth, rather than throwing snippet after snippet at us. "Uncovered" is a great rough draft of a documentary, but as a finished product it's flawed.For all of that, this is still a documentary worth seeing. There's a lot of great information here; the step-by-step analysis of Powell's speech to the UN is particularly effective. This is an important film and one that needs to be seen."
"Oh, please," Indeed!
Robert Cook | New York | 08/16/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"To the reviewer who titled his one-star review "Oh, Please," perhaps you should acquire some sense of perspective. Hussein was certainly a brutal tyrant, but he did not kill MILLIONS of his subjects. Tens of thousands, yes, perhaps even hundreds of thousands. But MILLIONS? No.
Perhaps the distinction is lost on you, and in terms of whether it makes Hussein a MORE or LESS evil brute, it is insignificant. However, it is crucial that WE make sure we are scrupulous when discussing the evil deeds of others, or, in general, when discussing anything which requires careful deliberation prior to acting. Hyperbole merely destroys the perspective which is necessary to determine just what actions ARE appropriate, and WHEN such actions must be carried out.
You say you don't care whether Hussein had WMD or whether he was linked to 9/11, both of which were falsehoods promulgated by the Bush administration. The importance of whether our President tells the truth or not, especially in such urgent matters of state as waging war, should be obvious to anyone, and that you don't see it implies you lack a capacity to appreciate the damage done by such lies.
Nontheless, I'll give it a shot: our country is based on the premise that we are self-governing; we elect persons to office to represent us and to act FOR us in passing laws and managing affairs of state for the general welfare. In order to act in our own interest, we must know who we're actually electing, and we must know what they intend to do, based on who they tell us they are. When they're in office, we must trust they're telling us the truth so we may express our educated approval or disapproval of their decisions BEFORE they're enacted. To go to war based on lies is to deny the people the right to have their will acted upon. Once a president or other public official is caught lying, we can never know when they will lie in future, or even if they'll EVER tell us the truth. How can we govern ourselves when those who represent us tell us lies and act according to reasons of their own? We can't.
Moreover, how can we engage in diplomatic relations with other nations if they cannot trust that we're acting truthfully and in good faith? Again, we can't.
As with anyone who lies, the lie poisons one's ability ever to interact with that person again, as one can never trust that one will not be fooled or taken advantage of, or know whether the other party is acting for our best interests or for his own agenda.
All that said, UNCOVERED is excellent, and reveals this administration's terrible propensity to prevaricate to suit its own purposes. They could have gone to the UN and to Congress and tried to make a humanitarian case for removing Hussein: his brutality to his own people. This being a representative Republic, we the people could have decided to support the war or not based on factual reasons for going. But the Bushies feared the people would not consider such reasons sufficient to wage war over, and they subverted democracy by lying to us in order that we would not stop their war of choice, a war they have carried out NOT because of any of the reasons they told us, but for geopolitical and ideological reasons of their own.
If this film were shown to every voter before November, we can be certain Bush would have no chance of regaining office. He may not in any case, but with the illumination provided by this film, it would be, as George Tenet said, " a SLAM DUNK!"
From a 2000 Bush Voter
David Vee | Wisconsin, USA | 08/08/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The video begins by listing an impressive group of military, intelligence and government officials who made contributions to the film, immediately casting aside fears that this is another work of an opinionated film-maker with an ax to grind with the Bush Administration.
The most impressive aspect of the film is how the claims used by the Bush Administration to sell the war to Congress and the American public are debunked one by one, using facts, expert testimony and news clips.
The profound conclusion is that we were sold a bogus bill of goods by the Bush Administration - this wasn't about the war on terror, weapons of mass destruction or democracy. This was about fulfilling the neo-conservative doctrine of pre-emptive war and exercising U.S. influence over the oil-rich Middle East.
Before I put much stock in the credibility of ANY piece of journalism, I make a point of seeking out published rebuttals to the work. Much to my amazement, I found only ad hominem attacks and the tired old "Liberal Propaganda" charge, but very few, if any real criticisms. Just like the critics on this board, NOBODY has given a credible defense to the accusations presented here.
I challenge the supporters of President Bush (as I once was) to view this film. If all you can say in response is along the lines of "Stupid Liberal", maybe you should be examining your own political loyalties. "
Impeachment is always an option
!Edwin C. Pauzer | New York City | 04/18/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD reveals the marketing campaign of the Bush administration's goal to go to war with Iraq. They had no reason to until 9/11. But first they had to convince the American people. In other words, they had to lie.
First lie: Iraq had weapons of mass destruction (WMD). In a very broad sense WMD's mean chemical and nuclear weapons. But chemical weapons are tactical or battlefied weapons that kill hundreds or even thousands. They also degrade rapidly usually within a matter of months. Then, you see a clip of G.W. telling his audience that Saddam has several hundred tons of chemical agents. There's a clip of Condi Rice saying that the aluminum tubes could only beused to fuel rockets even though our energy department, the UN, and Ambassador Wilson claimed they could not. Next, there's Cheney claiming that Iraq has reconstituted nuclear weapons.
Repeatedly we are shown clip after clip of Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Rice and Powell claiming that Iraq has WMD capability, claiming that they couldn't wait for the smoking gun to come in the form of a mushroom cloud. This is the nuclear side of DVD which is a strategic application, and will kill millions. When asked if Rumsfeld knew definitely where Iraq was keeping their WMD's, he replied, "In Tikrit and Baghdad. Somewhere north, south, east or west of there." That really narrows it down.
Second lie: There is a connection between al Quada and Saddam Hussein. This administration wanted us to believe that Saddam would give traceable nuclear material to bin Laden so he could use it against the US. We were supposed to believe that an ultra-control freak, madman and virtual pagan would ally himself with religious fanatic with whom he might have to share power and popularity. Sure! Saddam did support terrorism, which amounted to giving $25,000 to the families of suicide bombers in Israel. There were no terrorist training camps under his control. Period.
Third lie: Attempting to paint anyone who disagreed with the administration's policy was a traitor. [...]
It is clear from this superb DVD that this administration was "data mining" i.e. defining their theory and then looking for any evidence to suppport it, rather than the other way around. Analysts at the CIA who wanted to get ahead began to write their intelligence estimates to suit what they knew the administration wanted. Analysts who said there was no connection were ignored. Vice President Cheney made an unprecedented 29 visits to the CIA between 9/11 and start of hostilities. Did he ever ask, "Are you certain that Iraq was not involved?" What would an analyst conclude from that? And why did Rumsfeld suggest hitting Iraq one day after 9/11?
There were no aluminum tubes, yellow cake, WMD's, nuclear or chemical. We went to war on a lie alienating our allies, and giving our enemies a reason.
Some important questions emerge from this DVD:
As the weapons inspector Hans Blix stated: "How could anyone [the Bush administration] be 100% sure of the existence of WMD's with a zero percent knowledge of where they are?" Now the neocons claim that these missiles were moved to Syria, but they don't know exactly where. Now, how do you know for sure that something is in one place if you don't know where that place is?
If the Israelis knew that Iraq had all these WMD's from chemical to nuclear weapons, wouldn't they have bombed them? Would they have waited for us? The Mossad, perhaps the finest intelligence service in the world, has spies all over the place. They guided Israeli bombs to an Iraqi reactor in 1981. Does anyone believe the Israelis would have sat on their hands?
Finally, why did President Bush take us to war when he knew:
o the aluminum tubes were not for missiles or fuel?
o Scud rockets didn't even have the range to get to Europe?
o Ambassador Wilson told him that Iraq was not getting enriched uranimum from Niger?
o the letter from Niger that claimed the uranium deal was being made, was actually a fake?
o the weapons inspectors stated Iraq had no such WMD capability?
o If this president took us to war knowing that their evidence was a lie or even suspect, isn't that an impeachable offense?
Richard Nixon was charged with impeachment for violating his constitutional oath, failing to ensure that our laws were faithfully executed, making false and misleading statements, misuse of the CIA, withholding information from Congress, and deceiving the people of the United States with false and misleading statements.