Shock and Awe (2017) Script

Continuing today's hearing on future VA funding... the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs... is called back to order.

We'll hear from our next witness.

Will you please stand and raise your right hand?

My apologies.

Please raise your right hand.

Do you swear that the testimony you're about to give... this committee will be the truth, the whole truth... and nothing but the truth, so help you God?

I do.

Please state your name.

Private First Class Adam Green, United States Army, retired.

Mr. Green, I understand you've prepared a statement?

I have, sir.

You may enter it into the record at this time.

Mr. Chairman, members of the Committee...

I want to thank you for the opportunity... to speak with you today.

I served in the military f...

I'm sorry, if I could just...

Sure, go ahead.

Thank you, sir.

I've always liked numbers.

Whenever I have a hard time wrapping my head around... something, I find that numbers make things clearer for me.

They help me understand decisions that are made... and the impacts of those decisions.

So, if it's all right...

I'd like the start with the number 1.4 million.

That's the number of men and women... who are currently serving in our military.

555... that's how many days passed before we invaded one country... after having been attacked by another.

19... is how old I was when I enlisted.

Three is the number of hours that passed from the time...

I arrived in Iraq to the time our transport... was destroyed by an I.E.D.

And then there's six.

That's the number of inches the piece of shrapnel was... that severed my spinal cord.

The only problems with numbers is they can be impersonal.

A decision you made had a life-changing impact on me... and a lot of soldiers like me.

Now, I'm not a military expert.

I don't know a whole lot about geopolitical affairs.

I'm just an ordinary American.

And I understand that you've asked me here... because you all have some questions for me, but if it's all right, I'd like to ask all of you a question.

How the hell did this happen?

My fellow citizens, at this hour...

American and coalition forces are in the early stages... of military operations to disarm Iraq, to free... its people and to defend the world from grave danger.

The start of the campaign called Shock and Awe.

Shock and Awe.

Shock and Awe. Shock and Awe, indeed.

Air raid sirens are going off in Baghdad...

The massive military operation... to topple Saddam Hussein is now in effect.

Firing 600 Cruise missiles... and every type of war plane in the American arsenal.

A fearsome display of American military might.

The scale of this attack... is considerably higher than anything we've seen before.

We're taking out whole buildings... with these Cruise missiles.

U.S. war planes unleashed... to promise massive bombardment of Baghdad.

3,000 Tomahawk Cruise missiles... satellite-guided precision bombs, laser-guided bombs.

I think the citizens of Baghdad know... exactly what the Pentagon means by Shock and Awe.

Just over the Kuwait-Iraq border... we watched as columns of troops moved into the country.

They're well on their way to Baghdad.

They have met resistance.

We can't leave the television... every tank, every helicopter... is that my son?

Now Baghdad is within striking distance... just a few short miles away... as U.S. troops make their final push forward.

We want to slaughter them all... those invaders, their tombs will be here in Iraq.

If Saddam Hussein is alive, he is quote...

"Not in control of his military and of his government."

These are opening stages of what will be a broad... and concerted campaign.

Could be longer and more difficult than some predict.

And helping Iraqis achieve a united, stable... and free country will require our sustained commitment.

And you can know that our forces will be coming home... as soon as their work is done.

Keep moving! Keep moving! Let's go!

Where are they taking us? Shut up. Head down.

Keep your mouth shut or I'll blow your fucking head off.

All right, all right. Are you a soldier?

Journalist. Who do you work for?

Knight Ridder. Never heard of it.

You should read more.

What is your name?

Jonathan Landay.

Goodbye, Jonathan Landay.

Exercise complete.

What you have just engaged in is called The Gray Man Exercise.

And what you have just witnessed... is a colossal failure of that exercise.

If a journalist is captured... terrorists may keep you alive... in hopes of getting information or exchanging you for a ransom.

But if you give them a reason to kill you, they will.

The purpose of this exercise is to teach you... how to avoid drawing the attention of your captors.

Hence the name, Gray Man.

Can you untie me?

This could save your life one day, you understand?

I do, I've been in 11 war zones, I've been shot at...

I've been held captive, I take this very seriously.

But if you don't untie me right now, I may lose my job.

And I'm fairly certain that none of this training... is going to be very useful... when I'm mopping the floor at Staples.

Both of the twin towers... the World Trade Center in New York's lower Manhattan... have been struck by planes this morning within 20 minutes.

First, it was the North Tower that was struck... with a gaping hole left in two sides of that building.

Good God.

20 minutes later, the second building... the second tower in that World Trade Center complex...

I think we should keep Elizabeth in school.

Yeah, no, I think that's a good idea.

Why freak her out, huh?

And I'll call Ali and Jennifer as soon as the phones open up.

I love you. I love you.


We should tell you that... we have gotten calls from people... who live and work around the Pentagon who have told us... that they have seen something... that they have described as an explosion.

This is information we have not been able to confirm.

Get up.

Sorry, Dad.

Monday Night Football went long.

Let's clean this place up.

Trade Center here in New York... have been hit by airplanes.

In Washington, there is a large fire at the Pentagon.

The Pentagon has been evacuated.

And there is, you can see, perhaps, the second tower... the front tower, the top portion of which is collapsing.

Good Lord.

Lot of people going to need a drink tonight.

Soldiers drink free.

There are no words.

All federal office buildings now... all federal office buildings in Washington, D.C. are being evacuated as we speak to you now.

We are in the middle of an extraordinary catastrophe.

The most important things to tell you if you just joined... in is that what has all the makings of an extraordinarily.. well-planned terrorist attack on both Washington and New York has taken place this morning.

The Trade Centers here in New York... the two World Trade Center towers have collapsed... after being hit by planes.

Yeah, this is John Walcott from Knight Ridder.

Is he there?

Yeah, okay, well, tell him I'll try him back later.

Thank you.

I just spoke with my wife.

She and the kids are afraid to leave the house.

What are they doing over there?

They're watching the White House.

To see if it gets hit?


Oh, Jesus. All right, go home to your family.

And tell your colleagues that maybe they want to stay away... from the windows, okay?

Thanks, John. Yeah.

Okay. All right. Okay.

Their working thesis is that this is overseas terrorism... not domestic.

Attention will quickly turn to the bin Laden group... because it has long tentacles.

There are very few others that could have pulled this off.

Are we sending somebody to New York?

Ken Moore at Suvu was already up there covering Wall Street.

What's going on over at State?

Powell's in Peru.

They're working on getting him home as soon as possible.

All right, what we need to do is track the President.

Track his top people and find out... who's responsible for all this.

We need as many sources at as many agencies... to go on the record and tell us all what we know has to be true.

Al Qaeda! Al Qaeda! It's Al Qaeda.

It's definitely Al Qaeda.

What the hell are you wearing?

Well, the wifey wanted to evacuate... but she locked the cat and the keys in the cars.

So, I biked in.

We need to know how they pulled this off.

Anybody needs to go home to their family... feel free to do so.

Just came from the family.

Let's get to work.

It's Walcott.

Today, our fellow citizens, our way of life... our very freedom, came under attack in a series... of deliberate and deadly terrorist acts.

Adam, hand me the Jameson, please.

Yes, sir. Here you go.

Thank you, son.

It's on the house, gentlemen.


Dad's saying we're staying open as late as they want.

They must be scared.

They're Rangers. They're boys.

Our military is powerful and it's prepared.

The search is underway for those... who are behind these evil acts.

I've directed the full resources of our intelligence.. and law enforcement communities to find those responsible... and to bring them to justice.

It's been 33 hours since the terrible... and unprecedented attack on the United States.

There is, as we've said, an enormous search and rescue... operation, and enormous and intense criminal investigation.

And we're just beginning to understand... the extents of the catastrophe.

I feel like I haven't slept in a month.

It's going to be a bunch of zombies running this town.

What do you know about the preliminary plans... to go after bin Laden?

I don't have anything to give you on that yet.

Ok, well, how long before we're on the ground in Afghanistan... and how long do they project we'll be there?

Look, I'm trying to get answers to the same questions you are.

What I can say is, most of the talk this morning... hasn't been about Afghanistan.

Well, what's it been about?


I got it from a source at State who got it from the Pentagon.

In connection with the attacks?

Crackpot theories from people who don't know... what the hell they're talking about.

It was Rumsfeld.


Yeah, apparently, there's a lot of people over at Defense... that think this had to be State-sponsored.

I mean, not just Rumsfeld, there's also that smug... son of a bitch at the Defense Policy Board... the Prince of Darkness?

Richard Perle. Right. Perle.

And that neo-con over at the Project... for the New American whatever the fuck...

New American Century, Bill Kristol.

That giant butthole, Bill Kristol.

And he's got to be creaming his little jammies over this.

Yeah, these think-tank boys... have been trying to push out Saddam Hussein since '97.

They have this crazy theory that if they can just stick... a Western-style of democracy in the Middle East... it's going to magically proliferate... and wind up protecting Israel.

You got to give them credit for creative thinking.

It's Ivory Tower crap.

I mean, in what world do they think that Osama bin Laden... and Saddam Hussein hatched this thing up together?

Let's find out if these dickweeds... are serious about Iraq, okay?

Look, I'm not saying there's a link to Iraq... and neither is my boss.

This is just something we're hearing.

From whom?

Who told me or where is it coming from?

Take your pick.

Someone at the Pentagon.

In the Vice President's office?

It's just theories.

Are there any Senators talking to anyone... saying anything different?

I know Powell's objected... to going into anywhere other than Afghanistan.

Go away.

One question and I'm gone.

I'm not talking to you on the record.

Anonymous source, intelligence community.

You can't use my name.

Never have, never will.

Or my agency.

Pinky swear.

One question.

Are you looking into an Iraqi connection?

Who's the you in that question?

Are we in the United States?

There are some people.

Are we in my agency?

Not that I'm aware of.

Am I, personally?

No way.

Okay, the second part to the question.


Thank you.

So, no one you work with at the Library of Congress has ever... found a link between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda?

No one I work with would expect to find a link.

So, as far as you know... there's nothing substantial to tie Iraq to bin Laden?

There's nothing even circumstantial.

To lump together a secular leader like Saddam... with an Islamic extremist like bin Laden is simply... to have no understanding of the Muslim world.

It's a bit timid.

No one's actually come out and said anything publicly yet.

Maybe it's just backroom speculation.

Pretty dangerous speculation.

Can't we hit it harder than this?

The attacks were just 10 days ago.

Everyone's trying to play catch-up.

Got to press our reliables.

I'll reach out to The Italian Lady.

You think you can get Loose Nukes to go on the record?

I'm lucky to get her on deep background.

Well, double down on the Charm Offensive.

Buongiorno, this is Warren Strobel.

I was looking to get your advice on a critical scheduling matter.

If you could contact me at your earliest possible convenience...

I would greatly appreciate it. Thank you.


Yeah, hi, it's Jonathan.

I don't have anything for you.

No, I know, I know, but I'm doing a story... on the administration's seeming interest in Iraq.

Jonathan, we're not going to talk about this.

No, I know, I know I'm not talking about this... because it's off the record, but can you give me some indication?

Bye, Jonathan.

What'd she say?

She sends her love.

Across the nation... flags have been flying off the shelves.

A wave of patriotism has been spreading across America.

At times like this, it's what we do in America.

We the People pull together.

They had a discussion in school today... about why America is so great, right?

Yeah, and what'd you say?

It's a free country.

That's a great answer.

That's Mama's boy.

May I be done now?

Not until I get a big hug.

Okay, after your mom gets a hug.

Oh, whoa!

Proud of you, munchie.

Love you.

They're really pushing this nationalism thing at school.

What do you expect?

Of course, there's going to be patriotism now.

Oh, you want to call it patriotism?


It smells a lot like nationalism to me.

That's how it started in Yugoslavia before the war.

Tore my country apart.

You want some help?

No, I'm okay, thank you.

Okay, have a good night.

Good night.

How real is the Iraqi conversation?

There's an argument taking place.

Yeah? Who's winning it?

I couldn't say.

Look, my boss is gonna send me to Afghanistan, and all I want.. to know is should he be buying a roundtrip ticket... or is Afghanistan just a layover on the way to Baghdad?

I can't tell you anything.

I believe major acts of terrorism... against the U.S. are state-sponsored.

So, we asked ourselves, "Who could have been behind... the most massive terrorist assault in human history...

"which state?"

I think Iraq is the state that most immediately comes to mind.

This is an idea which in... is gaining increased credibility.

Knight Ridder, it's Strobel.

Jim Woolsey is going to Europe... to try to find a link between Saddam... and the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.

Is he freelancing?

He was sent on an official government jet.

Jesus, who sent him?

The deputy defense secretary.

Can you meet for coffee?

I'll be in touch.

Hi, this is Warren Strobel with Knight Ridder.

I'm working on a story... about former CIA director James Woolsey traveling to Europe.

Do you know anything about that?

I didn't have anything to do with that.

But you're aware that such a trip has taken place?

I can't be your only source on this.

All right, stay in touch.

Hey, John.

Woolsey was sent to Europe to look for evidence... linking Saddam to the World Trade Center bombing in '93.

Wouldn't be a fool's errand if they didn't send a fool.

This came from The Italian Lady?

And a diplomat who can confirm... the trip was arranged by Wolfowitz.

What the hell is going on over at Defense?

Question is, are they trying to figure out... if there's any truth to their theory... or are they already convinced their theory is true?

You're sure about this Woolsey trip?

Positive. You have a third source?

Yeah. Who?

Jim Woolsey.

Hey, it's Walcott, you up for a field trip?

I figured you'd be calling...

I just didn't think it would be this soon.

How real is the chatter about Iraq?


And it's diverting our attention from the people who attacked us.

How soon before Iraq becomes the focus?

We need to blow something up.

Not enough targets in Afghanistan.

What about bin Laden?

You take out bin Laden... interest in the war goes right down the shitter.

A joint offensive in its sixth day in Tora Bora... bin Laden's suspected hideout... but still no signs of the world's most wanted man.

U.S. B-52s pounding Al Qaeda positions from the air... while anti-Taliban tanks... and troops meet strong resistance... cave to cave, from Al Qaeda fighters.

With yet more conflicting reports... on bin Laden's whereabouts.

What you got there... is that your State of the Union piece for tomorrow?

Yup. You got a lunch today?

Not with you.

I got a one-on-one with Looney Tunes over at State.

There's a dry hole.

Yeah, well, I figured if I just let him ramble on... he'll accidentally stumble into something newsworthy.

Yeah, well, give my best.

I will. Hot off the presses, Beryl.

Did you use punctuation this time?

I even threw in a few semicolons just for you.

I bet you're the pride of the University of Missouri.

Terrorists who once occupied Afghanistan... now occupy cells at Guantanamo Bay.

And terrorist leaders who urged followers to sacrifice... their lives are running' for their own.

Now, the administration's top priority apart from our own... security is to ensure freedom for other countries... looking to embrace democracy as a way of life.

Now, we... excuse me... we understand that we can't... be the policemen to the world... but we feel we have a responsibility to...

Yeah, John Walcott.



John, can you hear me?

Yeah, yeah, I can hear you.

I got a call from one of our boys downrange today... asking me what the fuck's going on.

Are you still in Afghanistan?

Yeah, I'm in Afghanistan... but nobody knows what the mission is anymore.

How do you bomb a country back into the Stone Age... that's already in the middle of the goddamn Stone Age?

Our second goal is to prevent regimes that sponsor terror... from threatening America, or our friends and allies... with weapons of mass destruction.

We believe that Afghanistan is ripe for freedom.

Now, this is a country that has been struggling to free... itself from the repressive grip of the Taliban for years.

We've got bin Laden on the run and they're diverting my assets.

We may never get him in our crosshairs again.

Whoa, whoa, wait, they're diverting your assets to where?

Some of these regimes have been pretty quiet since...

September the 11th, but we know their true nature.

You know, it's a country in desperate need of the kind... of stability that comes with the rule of law.

North Korea, Iran, Iraq... states like these... and their terrorist allies constitute an axis of evil... arming to threaten the peace of the world.

You'll have to excuse me...

Warren, but I have to prepare a briefing for Secretary Powell.


Anything else you need from me?

No, no, thank you.

I think you've given me more than enough to chew on.


And you feel confident that Afghanistan... will accept a Western-style democracy?

Oh, absolutely.

Just as confident as we are about Iraq.

Sounds like the debate on Iraq is getting serious.

Oh, no, no, no, that debate is over.

Saddam's got to go, the only question is how.

Good talking to you, Warren.

Yeah, you, too, sir.

The president is going to invade Iraq.

You got this from Looney Tunes?

Yeah, and confirmed by a diplomat who says he met... with Bush, and a foreign leader recently who came away with...

"The feeling that a decision has been made to strike Iraq."

Do you think we can get enough to run the story?

Unfortunately, I do.

So much for the ceasefire.

Yeah, well, really nice of us... to temporarily stop shooting at them, though.

♪ I've been bound up and wound up ♪

♪ Could barely get a sound up ♪

♪ Been cheated mistreated ♪

♪ Don't even want to think of it ♪ What are you up to, Smucker?

You know, I tried to chat with your translator today.

Yeah, how'd that go?

Well, for a guy who gets paid to talk for a living... he was unusually quiet.

He only talks to me.

Really? And what'd he tell you?

Dollar, I'll let you read all about it.

Let me see it. bin Laden's gone, isn't he?

They missed him, didn't they?

He was here and they fucking missed him!

A senior U.S. military official... tells NBC News "Despite the crushing defeat...

"of Al Qaeda forces at Tora Bora...

"it's believed now that Osama bin Laden has slipped...

"across the border into Pakistan, seeking refuge...

"in a lawless no man's land...

"ruled by renegade tribal warlords."

Oh, it's official... this is the saddest event I've ever attended.

I'm going back to my apartment, drink a bottle of wine... and put my head in the oven.

Okay, but before you do that...

I really want you to meet the guy I was telling you about.

Oh! He just walked in!

Forget the wine, I'll kill myself now.

No, not him... him. I'll introduce you.

Pam, please don't.

Warren! Hey! Oh, hi.

Glad you could make it, come on over.

Warren, this is a good friend of mine, Lisa Mayr.

Lisa, this is Warren Strobel, he's a journalist... and I'm gonna get another drink.

Hi, uh, Lisa?

Yeah. Yeah, nice to meet you.

Hi. Uh...

Did you ever make it into your apartment?

Uh, oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, no, no, no, I'm sorry.

Yeah, I made it in okay. Good. Good.

So, you're a journalist?

Yeah, yeah, for Knight Ridder.

Oh, is that a magazine or a newspaper?

It's actually a consortium of 31 newspapers, actually.

Well, my stories go out to all of our newspapers... and each one has the option to publish or not.

Oh, okay. I've always wondered how that worked.


Hey, I got married when I was 22.

And we're only recently separated, so...

This is a little awkward for me.

It's okay.

I'm a little out of practice.

Why don't you start by asking me a question?

Sure, yeah.

Are you a Republican or a Democrat?

Try again.

Yeah, of course, she wants you to call her.

She gave you her card.

No, maybe she's just trying to gin up business.

At a singles mixer on Valentine's Day?

What? So, call her? I should call her?

What? No, no, no, actually, let her dangle.

There's nothing a woman in her 30s likes more... than a guy who takes his time.

I'm fine, Arthur, I'm fine.

It's just that I'm getting a little tired... of picking up your paper every morning... and seeing that you're not running our stories.

I mean, last time I looked...

The Philadelphia Inquirer was a Knight Ridder paper, right?

The point is, there's no point in being a Knight Ridder paper.. if you're not going to run Knight Ridder stories.

John, we've been through this already.

Your stories don't fit... in with what we're doing over here right now.

Don't fit? Don't fit with what? The truth?

What's the matter, Arthur... the truth doesn't sell papers anymore?

And today, for the first time... the administration provided... details for what it has always insisted was a connection... between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda.

How strong is that case?

Iraqi president Saddam Hussein says... he does not have any illegal weapons of mass destruction... and accused the United States of using weapons... as a pretext to start a war.

Mr. Galloway, how closely did the movie conform to your book?

The movie was about 80% accurate and 20% bullshit... which I guess by Hollywood standards is an accomplishment.

What inspired you to write the book?

Being shot at by the North Vietnamese army.

What was the biggest difference between experiencing... the Battle of Ia Drang in person versus watching it in a theater?

The popcorn in Ia Drang was saltier.

Last question.

Can you draw any comparisons between Vietnam... and what's happening today in Afghanistan?

It's very different, but I think it is appropriate... that before we start dropping bombs, we think long and hard... about the greatest lesson we got from Vietnam.

Which is?

When the government fucks up, the soldiers pay the price.

To what do I owe this unexpected visit?

Well, I was hoping I'd get an autograph... from the world's most famous war correspondent.

I hate this part. Reporters are not supposed to be the story.

Reporters are not supposed to be awarded the Bronze Star, either.

How do you like the job at State?

I love working for General Powell... and I hate working for Uncle Sam.

You miss reporting?

After 42 years, I thought...

I should take some time away from it.

So, I went to work at the State Department on September 10th... and the next day the biggest story of my life broke.

I'd say there's a little bit of a tug.

We're working on something important, that's why I'm here.

To make me envious?

To make you an offer.

If he gets weapons of mass destruction, Jerry.

What does that mean for the world?

What does that mean for the Middle East?

Can you turn it down? I'm trying to watch the news.

Stop calling it that.

Hey, son.

Adam, what's the matter?

I met with a recruiter.

A lot of people are gonna die, Jerry.

You know once you sign up... there's no changing your mind, right?

I know.

What do you know? You're just a kid.

Whose country was attacked.

Adam, I know you want to do what you think is right... but war is not a video game.

You have no idea what you're getting into.

I know exactly what I'm getting into.


Show me where Afghanistan is on this map.

Show me.

They're gonna send you halfway around the world to fight... people you didn't even know existed a year ago.

If you know what you're getting into... show me where Afghanistan is on this map.

Did anyone ever shove a map in Dad's face... and ask him to find Vietnam?

We now know that Saddam has resumed... his efforts to acquire nuclear weapons.

Among other sources, we've gotten this from firsthand... testimony from defectors.

Many of us are convinced that Saddam Hussein... will acquire nuclear weapons fairly soon.

Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein... now has weapons of mass destruction.

They're dialing up the rhetoric on Iraq.

Let's see if we can nail them down, okay?

Twenty bucks, whoever gets the best quote.

No, no, no, you're such a child.

You're such a pussy.

I'm not taking your money.

You get all bent out of shape when you lose.

I don't care. I'm just the same when I win or lose.

I'm not... it's not a bet, all right, fine.

Warren Strobel for Senator Biden, please.

Son of a bitch.

Biden told Bush, "There's a reason your father didn't go...

"to Baghdad. He knew he would have to stay...

"for at least five years."

I got Michael O'Hanlon at Brookings saying...

"You definitely cannot count on it being a cakewalk."

We gotta hit it harder than that.

All right, well, hang on. I got an official at the U.N... that says, "There's widespread concern...

"that this will destabilize the whole Middle East."

Let me see what you have.

Well, wait, I got... I got...

Just give it to me, give, give, give.


All right.

Let's see here... all right.

You guys are smart.

You know what's unfolding here.

Our readers need to know what we've learned.

"In the best case scenario, U.S. troops could be stuck in Iraq...

"for years trying to teach the inner workings of democracy...

"to a nation that has never known it. In the worst case...

"scenario, an invasion could cause Iraq's fractious ethnic...

"groups to break off into their own mini-states...

"trapping American combat forces in the middle...

"of a bloody civil war for decades."

Boss man's got balls.



Were those for me?

No. Yes.

But I thought it might be a little, I don't know... a little too soon to be giving each other gifts.

It would've been all right.


Well, I think they landed on my car... so if you want to grab them on the way to dinner... maybe we can do that?

Great. Great.

Okay, so what was the most embarrassing thing... you did to prepare for tonight?

All right.

I will admit, that to prepare for tonight...

I did kind of a cram session on Iraq... and the history of the Muslim world.



Now I know that 1400 years ago, after the death of Muhammad...

Muslims fought over who was to be his rightful heir... and that caused a split into two factions... the Sunnis and the Shiites.

And they've been at war ever since.

Then, at the end of World War I, the British and the French... arbitrarily divided the Arab world into countries... putting the Sunni majority in charge.

But the country that became Iraq is made up of only 20% Sunni.

So, Saddam Hussein, a Sunni, with an iron fist rules... the majority Shiite population... and the 20% Kurdish population in northern Iraq.

But if Saddam Hussein were removed, it could possibly... reignite that 1400-year-old sectarian war.

Now, after reading your stories...

I know that Iran is the top sponsor of terror, not Iraq.

That a man named Ahmed Chalabi seems to be a con artist... who wants to replace Saddam Hussein.

That the neo-cons in the Bush Administration... are pushing for an invasion.

And you are quickly becoming my favorite writer.


Um... I guess it's my turn.

Give it to me.

Okay, I will admit that...

This is a little embarrassing.

I asked my ex-wife to watch my two sons tonight.

Why is that embarrassing?

Because a babysitter would expect me home... at the end of the evening and...

Should we get the check?

Tell your boss we're gonna run it whether he comments or not!

Actually yes, it is a matter of life and death!

We're talking about going to fucking war!


I'm guessing that was a no comment?

What are you grinning about?

What? I'm not grinning.

You're grinning. I'm not grinning.

I'm not... What have you got over there?

Relax! Don't worry about it.

Oh my God, she could do my taxes.

All right, relax.

Strobel, Knight Ridder. Of course.


All right, I'll be right there.

Let's go, this could be something.

So, how does this work?

Do you ask me questions or do I just start talking?

Why don't you just begin... and we'll ask the questions when we have them.

If it's off the record, I have to say so, right?

Do you want it to be off the record?

I want people to know what I know, but not who I am.

It'll be background.

You'll be referred to as a U.S. official.

So, whatever you feel comfortable telling us.

I believe your prediction about what could and will happen... if we go to war is spot on.

And we're a lot closer than you think.

How close?

A secret war planning group with a parallel intelligence... operation has been set up to bypass... the rest of the intelligence community.

How do you know this?

They meet in the building where I work.

And which building is that?

The one with the five sides.

But you're not a part of that unit?


So, how do you know about this?

My desk is across the hall.

What office do you work for?

Near East South Asia division, but you can't disclose that.

You're an analyst?

Yes... but you can't disclose that, either.

I'm speaking to you because I'm an American citizen... and I don't like what these people are doing.

Half a dozen men, most of whom have never served... in the military are making decisions... based on shoddy intelligence, and those decisions... will impact our men and women in uniform.

And as someone who has worn that uniform, I can't remain silent.

You said shoddy intelligence. What do you mean by that?

They've designed a process that doesn't conform... to any basic tenet of intelligence gathering.

In what way?

A decision is made, then the intelligence... is sought to support that decision.

How do you know this?

They have no interest in Arabic speakers.

Israelis come in without passes... without even being entered into a security log.

And for years the government has been funding a group... of exiled dissidents called the Iraqi National Congress.

Led by Ahmad Chalabi, we know.

Who they want to install as the new leader of Iraq.

Yeah, we've been trying to get a meeting with him.

Do you know who set up this operation?

Donald Rumsfeld.

Is there any evidence to indicate that Iraq... has attempted to or is willing to supply terrorists... with weapons of mass destruction?

The reports that say that something hasn't happened... are always interesting to me because as we know... there are known knowns, there are things we know we know.

We also know there are known unknowns.

That is to say, we know there are some things we do not know.

But there are also unknown unknowns.

The one's we don't know we don't know.

We're working on a theory that the administration... has already decided to go to war... and is now focused on how to justify it.

It's not a theory.

We've also been told by a number of individuals that...

Rumsfeld's the one spearheading this intelligence gathering.

I wouldn't exactly call it intelligence gathering.

It's more like intelligence cherry picking.

And if they don't find any cherries... they just grab a piece of shit... and they paint it red, and they stick it in a Shirley Temple.

You seem irritated.

I'm out there looking for weapons that might not exist... to justify a war that might not be wise.

And have you found any evidence of WMD?

No, sir.

But Saddam is looking to acquire nukes, right?

Yeah, and I'm trying to fuck Jennifer Lopez, but I have... a sinking feeling that neither of those things is gonna happen.

So, we won't use your identity, but can we get a quote?


Have you found anything to support the administration's... theory that Saddam is close to or has acquired nuclear weapons?

We've searched every cave... and looked up every camel's ass in Iraq.

So, here's your quote, "no fucking way."

Might have to clean that up a bit.

Quite colorful, though.

Uh, honey, I think someone... is stealing our New York Times.

I canceled it.

Why would you do that?

It's propaganda.

I need that for my work.

It's packaging press releases from the White House... the State Department, and the Pentagon.

Sorry, that's not a real newspaper.

How was your day?

Warren and I met with some gentleman... from the intelligence community who confirmed that... there's no real evidence to support... the administration's claim on WMD.

What have I been telling you?

Well, unfortunately, I can't use your gut as a reliable source.

You know, this is what they do. They lie.

Yeah, and we try to hold them accountable.

I hope I'm wrong. I really, really do.

But the Bush Administration, they don't care about the truth.

They don't even respond to your articles.

If they want a war, they're gonna get one.

And there's nothing that you or the first amendment... is gonna do to stop them.

Extra, extra, read all about it.

"Over the past 14 months, Iraq has tried to buy thousands...

"of specially design aluminum tubes, which American...

"officials believe were intended as components...

"of centrifuges to enrich uranium."

Well, one thing's for sure.

What's that?

We can't both be right.

Who're you calling?

Loose Nukes.

If she wouldn't talk to you about going into Iraq... what makes you think she's gonna go on the record on WMD?

Charm Offensive. Watch and learn, son.


It's Joe Galloway. Wow.

Man even walks like he has a Bronze Star.


Oh, hi, yeah, it's Landay.

Hello, Jonathan.

Hi. Crazy weather we're having, huh?

You're calling me to chat about the weather?

No, no, yeah. Actually, I wanted to ask you about WMD.

It'll be deep, deep background.

Goodbye, Jonathan.

No wait, don't hang up.

That Charm Offensive... that's formidable.

Listen, we need you here.

You've developed sources over the years that have access... that Landay and Strobel just can't get.

I'll make it easy on you.

I'll give you a column... and your name doesn't have to appear on anything else.

Whatever else you want to write on the side, you can... and of course, there won't be any glory, but...

Glory's for young men.

Let me percolate on it.

Let me turn to the issue of Iraq.

You have said that it poses... a mortal threat to the United States.

How? Define "mortal threat."

Well, this'll take some time, but it's important for us... as I mentioned earlier... to remember that the world has changed, that prior to...

I'd forgotten the world had changed.

So did I. I'm so happy he mentioned that.

What, specifically, has he obtained that you believe... would enhance his nuclear development program?

Well, in the nuclear weapons arena... you've got specifically aluminum tubes.

There's a story in The New York Times this morning... this is and I want to attribute to The Times.

I don't want to talk about, obviously... specific intelligence sources, but it's now public that... in fact he has been seeking to acquire, and we have been... able to intercept and prevent him from acquiring... through this particular channel... the kinds of tubes that are necessary... to build a centrifuge.

And the centrifuge is required to take low-grade uranium... and enhance it into highly enriched uranium... which is what you have to have in order to build a bomb.

Lucky for him, someone leaked that to The Times.

Avoids the pesky nuisance of being arrested... for revealing classified information.

One can only wonder how Judy Miller and Michael Gordon... got that information.

Does it bother you, bug you... that you have not captured Osama bin Laden in over a year?

I'd like to see him on television in handcuffs... if I can put it into those terms.

I think all of us would.

But I don't lay awake at night concerned about that.

There's one school of thought that says he's already dead.

We haven't heard anything of him in many months.

What do you think?

I don't know, I really don't know.

I can argue it round or flat.

I didn't know we were still debating the shape of the earth.

I've got sources on both sides.

But the U.S. military would be enormously effective... in this circumstance.

And I don't think it would be that tough a fight.

That is, I don't think there's any question... that we would prevail and we would achieve our objective.



We are right, aren't we?

Everybody, listen up.

We're not NBC.

We're not ABC. We're not CBS.

We're not FOX. We're not CNN.

We're not The New York Times.

We're not The Washington Post.

We are Knight Ridder.

We have readers who live in towns with military bases.

Fort Benning, Fort Bragg, Fort Jackson... and over 40 other military bases throughout this country.

If every other news organization wants to be stenographers... for the Bush administration, let them.

We don't write for people who send other people's kids to war.

We write for people whose kids get sent to war.

So, when the government says something... you only have one question to ask.

Is it true?

I'm through percolating.

Let's get to work.

Administration officials spanned out on the Sunday talk shows... to make the case for an invasion of Iraq.

Who else is involved in The Office of Special Planning?

Wolfowitz, Feith, couple others.

Instead of listening to people who have spent their careers... evaluating threats, they're streaming questionable intel... from unreliable sources and taking it... directly to the White House.

George Tenet, Director of Central Intelligence... told Senators, he could not rule out cooperation... between Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda.

I've seen the specs on those aluminum tubes.

They're too small to be used for enriching uranium.

What does that mean?

They can't be used for a nuclear bomb.

The President of the United States... said we're not going to permit nations to develop... weapons of mass destruction... as they're gonna supply those weapons to a network... of terrorism that could attack the United States.

Cheney is trying to shut out Powell.

Where'd you get this stuff?

Old friend.

We're starting to see a consensus from within... the administration for the removal of Saddam Hussein.

The administration has pointed... to a secret meeting in Prague between Iraqi intelligence... and 9/11 hijacker, Mohamed Atta.

Bush administration is pressing the United Nations...

Security Council for a resolution... to put pressure on Iraq.

President Bush will address the United Nations today... in hopes of putting together a multi-national coalition... to disarm Saddam Hussein.

The White House is lobbying Congress to authorize... the use of force in Iraq.

The minute these guys get their hands on anything... remotely resembling evidence... they leak it to The New York Times.

Now, I understand the position you're in... but please don't hang up on me.


Okay, the vice president of the United States... went to the V.F.W. and said that Saddam Hussein... is on the threshold of developing a nuclear weapon.

Then he goes on national television... and says the same thing.

Your question?

Ask the question.

What I want to know is, is Dick Cheney ignoring... good intelligence that contradicts his assumptions... or is he just getting bad intelligence?

The vice president is lying.

Thank you, thank you so much.

What? What, what, what? What'd she say?

He's lying.

He's lying. Cheney is lying.

Cheney's lying! Cheney's lying!

He's lying! John! He's lying!


Where the hell is he?

Here we go. Here we go.

He's lying. He's lying.

Cheney's lying.

Where did this come from?

Loose Nukes.


Now, we know what's being talk about, we got to get inside... those meetings and find out if there's a dissenting opinion.

I may have a guy.

Anybody we know?

The Usual Suspect.

You didn't want to do this in a parking garage?

If there was one that served Pad Thai, I would.

How's civilian life?

My retirement lasted about four hours.

You're with Knight Ridder?

I don't even have a desk yet. How the hell do you know that?

I have my ways.

You been following what we're doing over there?

Yes, I have.


You two may be singlehandedly saving... the Fourth Estate from extinction.

Mainstream media hasn't picked up a thing we been running.

Should be all the confirmation you need... that you're onto something.

What can I do for you?

We need some help with the higher ups.

How high?

High as you can get us.

You've been around a long time, Joe.

I doubt there's anything there that'll surprise you.

I was married one time to a woman who thought...

New Hampshire was the capital of Massachusetts.

There's always something you don't see coming.

What do you want to know?

Everything the administration doesn't want us to know.

You and I are going to be eating a lot of Pad Thai.

What kind of time frame are we looking at?

Next month, Congress is scheduled to vote... on whether or not to give the president... the authorization to go to war.

Are the votes there?

The administration thinks so.

Mr. President, 38 years ago, I, Robert C. Byrd... voted on the Tonkin Gulf Resolution.

The resolution that authorized the president to use military... force to repel armed attacks... and to prevent further communist aggression in Southeast Asia.

A joint resolution to authorize the use of United States... armed forces against Iraq should be brought to a close.

The clerk will call the roll.

Mr. Biden, aye.

Mrs. Clinton, aye.

It was this resolution that provided the basis... for American involvement in the war in Vietnam.

Mr. Kerry, aye.

Mr. Lieberman, aye.

Mr. Lott, aye.

It was this resolution... that lead to the deaths of 58,000 Americans.

Mr. McCain, aye.

Mr. McConnell, aye.

After all that carnage, we began to learn that in voting... for the Tonkin Gulf resolution... we were basing our votes on bad information.

And history is repeating itself.

Mr. Santorum, aye.

I urge senators to go down on the Capital Mall... and look at the Vietnam Memorial.

Nearly every day, you will find someone at that wall... weeping for a loved one.

Mr. Sessions, aye.

I will always remember the words of Senator Wayne Morse.

Mr. Specter, aye.

He stated, "The resolution will pass and senators...

"who vote for it will live to regret it."

We got K-10, we got Dixie, we don't need another source.

You know we got this.

Look, when you're accusing the secretary of defense... of running a shadow intelligence unit... out of the Pentagon, it's nice to have a little insurance.

That's all I'm saying.

All right, let's share it with the rest of the class.

You want to tell them?

Earlier today, I was summoned to the Pentagon.

By whom?

Rumsfeld, Ol' Limp Dick sent a message saying...

"All your sources are retired generals."

And I said, "All due respect, sir...

"80% of my sources are active military."

"Some of them are working in this building...

"and some of them are actually working on your staff."

"And hell, one or two of them might even be in this room."

Did you actually have sources in the room?

No, but it was fun watching him sweat like whores in church.

How close are we to getting something we can run with on the Office of Special Plans?

Well, we already got...

No, we're just gonna check with a couple more sources.

What's wrong with the sources you have?

Well, we just want to be certain.

You know, you sit on a story like this, the dam bursts.

Let's just move on this, okay, boys?

When are you gonna be finished?

Just a few more minutes, baby.

I can't sleep with the computer light on.

Actually, I'm done.

So, what are you working on?

Rumsfeld has a secret Intel group that's going... around the CIA to manufacture a case for war.

What the fuck, Jonathan?


Have you been talking about this on the phone?

Yeah, of course.

So, what?

They will hear you. Vlatka.

You're writing about infighting between spy agencies.


They're spy agencies, Jonathan.

They listen to your calls, they read your emails.

They probably bugged this house.

You're being paranoid.

You're being naive.

This isn't Yugoslavia, this is America.

America has changed.

War is big business for them.

You get in their way, they're gonna kill you.

Honey, you are being ridiculous. All right? Come on.

Don't you get it?

You know what these people are capable of?

You have a family!

Vlatka. Vlatka!

Oh, somebody's struggling. What's the matter?

Oh, Vlatka kept me up all night.

All right!

No, not that like that. It was conspiracy theories.

About what?

Oh... she thinks the government is monitoring us.

I mean, it's ridiculous.

Check your email.

John, you got to see this.

Oh, hold on a second.

Arthur, I really don't want to have this conversation again.

He hung up. What is it?

What do we do?

You're such a wuss. You're a wuss.

You're a much bigger wuss.

Shut up, will you stop it, you're being a child.

You're being a... Shut up!

Today's UN Security Council resolution... can be boiled down to four words, the clock is ticking.

Iraq's only alternative to full compliance, President Bush... made clear today, is of military confrontation.

The full disarmament of weapons of mass destruction... by Iraq will occur.

The only question for the Iraqi regime is to decide how.

Son of a bitch.

They beat us.

But they missed the whole point of why the unit was set up.

It doesn't matter, they got the scoop.

With what?

There's nothing about cherry picking intelligence.

There's nothing about bypassing other agencies.

We can still run ours.

John, no one's gonna pay attention... to a second story explaining all that.

We had it.

Goddamn it, Walcott's gonna be pissed.

Maybe he hadn't seen it yet.

How is it possible he hasn't talked to us all day?

He's giving us the silent treatment.

Oh, shit, here he comes.

Oh, Jesus.

You had the story.

Don't ever forget how it feels to get beat.

The only information Congress is getting... is coming directly from the administration.

Iraq is a huge country about the size of France... if they want to hide their weapons of mass destruction... they're going to be able to do so.

They're not going to rethink their positions... unless they are provided with independent intel.

No one who's supported the authorization for war... in Congress, in Iraq, not the president...

I am sure would go to war just because he wants to go to war.

Rumsfeld's been trying to sell this idea that an Iraqi... intelligence officer offered bin Laden safe haven in '99.


Well, if that offer actually had happened... bin Laden would have told Saddam to go fuck himself.

What do you make of the statement made... by the Iraqi government that Iraq has no weapons... of mass destruction and is not developing?

They're lying.


Your daughter is lovely.

Well, I wish I could take credit.

She gets it from her mother.

Dad, can I get you anything?

Oh, no, thanks, sweetie. Mr. Strobel?

I'm fine. All right.

Just real casual.

Tom and I were just talking about your latest article.

Oh, yeah?

Seems like you don't trust politicians.

Well, that's a pretty solid rule of journalism.

Even when they're talking about war?

Especially when they're talking about war.

You really believe there's no WMD?

Our names are on the article.

They don't say that there's no WMD.

They just said that the administration... hasn't offered any proof of WMD.

And you don't think they'll find any?

No, I don't.

You don't know that.

No, we don't.

But before we send our kids to their possible deaths... don't you think the administration... has an obligation to provide proof of their rationale?

What if that proof comes in the form of a mushroom cloud?

Okay, you've been watching Fox News again?

Rice, Cheney, and President Bush have all said the same thing.

Oh, well, then it must be true.

You kids are too young to remember... how close we came to nuclear war in '62.

Hell, Warren, you were born the very day...

President Kennedy ordered the blockade against Cuba.

The most powerful enemy we knew was gonna put nuclear weapons...

90 miles off our coast.

The president had to demonstrate strength.

And the next day, Kennedy sent Adlai Stevenson to the U.N... to offer proof that the missiles existed.

It's not just Fox News.

It's the Washington Post. It's The New York Times.

Hell, proof is coming from every major media outlet... in the country, except yours.


Uh, I think I forgot the hamburger buns, excuse me.

I'm going to grab a beer.

Jesus, Dad.

Are you okay, bro?


Are we good reporters?


I mean, are we doing anything... other than practicing good journalism?

No, we're doing exactly what we're supposed...

Then, why the fuck are we the only ones... running these fucking stories?!

He just wanted you to see all sides to him... before you take it to the next level.

Almost three months ago, the United Nations...

Security Council gave Saddam Hussein... his final chance to disarm.

Our intelligence officials estimate... that Saddam Hussein had the materials to produce...

What's the point of having U.N. weapons inspections... if Bush and Cheney are just going to ignore the results?

Well, when you're creating your own reality... it's pretty easy to ignore the facts.

And so what? Due diligence is too inconvenient... for the mainstream media at this point?

When news is a profit center...

Access becomes currency.


I'm proud of you, John.


For not wavering.

It's got to be tough.

It's not that tough.

I know who their sources are and I know who our sources are.

"Iraqi Dissidents Reassured in a Talk with Bush...

"About the Post-Hussein Era."

By Judith Miller.

She'd quote a carnival fortune teller... if he was willing to say Iraq had WMD.

We gotta dig into the declassified... national intelligence estimate... and find out if there are any gems in there.

Yeah, I'd love to see... what they redacted from the classified version.

Oh, what's going on with Chalabi?

We're on it.

I'm gonna keep an eye on my old boss.

I got a feeling. Yeah...

Colin may be the last person standing between peace and war.


Goddamn it!


Angela, did the mayor set a date... for the fundraiser yet?

Hey, Arthur, I was totally wrong.

Your head isn't literally up your ass.

It's always a pleasure to see you, John... but would you please wait outside?

You know, it's bad enough you're ignoring all our work... but the fact that you're running these bullshit...

Judy Miller pieces is unconscionable.

Not in here, John. Okay, please?

Let's take it in my office. Excuse me.


Look, as painful as this might seem...

I don't answer to you, John.

Yes, as evidenced by the fact that you still have a job.

You know what, my responsibility is to my readers.

They're citizens who are patriots... they're citizens who support our troops.

And how do you do that, Arthur?

By going down on The New York Times?

I don't have time for this.

No, you don't have time.

You don't have time.

You know, one day, The New York Times... is going to apologize to its readers.

And when that day comes, are you gonna write your own apology?

Or are you just going to run theirs?

Have a nice day, John.

It is beginning to look more and more as though... war with Iraq is inevitable.

The Showdown with Iraq and the countdown to a speech... by Secretary of State Colin Powell... that could move the world closer to war.

There's not much left for the soldiers to do but wait... for orders to attack, Ryan Chillcoat reports...

That's so frustrating.

I don't know that I could do what you do.

You know, I once got it in my head... that I should hike the Appalachian Trail.

Thought that it would just be a good challenge for myself.

Then I look at it on a map and it's like 2200 miles.

I realized...

That it would take a lifetime?


Or we could walk it together.

I'm gonna hold you to that.

Worldwide resistance is mounting... against America's military intervention into Iraq.

From US cities to Europe and the Middle East... demonstrators have taken to the streets in opposition... to the United States' threat to invade Iraq.

Mr. Strobel, Mr. Landay, how do you do?

Hello. I'm Entifadh Qanbar.

Hi. Now, please, follow me.

Who's this dude?

Guy who used to deliver pizzas. I'm not kidding.

Minister Chalabi, Mr. Jonathan Landay... and Warren Strobel from Knight Ridder News.

Gentlemen, welcome.

Hey. Thank you for finally agreeing to meet with us.

I've been very busy.

Talking to our competitors.

I speak with whomever wishes to speak with me.

After all, I have nothing to hide... which is more than I can say for Saddam.

Okay, well, since you brought him up...

I thought we might talk about what... you know about his weapons and how he might be hiding them.

He has WMD and he's hiding them, that I know.

Right, and you know that how?

I know everything that's happening in my country.

Even though Iraq hasn't been your country for over a decade?

I may be an exile, but I'm still an Iraqi.

Well, I think the point my colleague is trying to make... is how would you, an enemy of Saddam, in exile... have access to such valuable information?

I maintain close relationships... with dissident intelligence sources.

Is there a way we can verify that?


See, that's kind of a problem for us... because we can't write a story...

I want what America wants, a free and democratic Iraq.

With you as its leader?

If the people of Iraq wish for me to return, yes.

I want the opportunity to help rebuild my country... the way Mandela did in South Africa.

But Mandela didn't ask the U.S. to invade his country.

He wasn't fighting terrorists.

With all due respect, that's where the red flags... start to go up for us.

Are you implying that I've created a false narrative... for my own pursuits?

Is there another reason why you'd create a false narrative?

I don't lie!

Saddam Hussein has mobile chemical... and biological weapons labs.

He has a nuclear program. He has ties to terrorists.

And if you don't believe me, just ask the many other... defectors and hear what they say.

They will all tell you the same thing.

Don't they all get their information from you?

If you were wondering why it took so long for me... to meet with you, it's this smug attitude.

You have no intention of reporting anything I've said.

Do you want us to just be your cheerleaders?

All right, I think we should go.

Thank you for your time.

Now I see why no one reads anything you write.

I am an advocate for the removal of a vicious dictator... for a free Iraq, an Iraq that will one day be a close ally... to your country, to Israel, and to all of the Western world.

And exactly how will this happen after Saddam Hussein is gone?

All right, come on, Landay.

No, no, no, he says the world will be better off... but he doesn't say how.

How would the removal of Saddam Hussein... not plunge Iraq into a bloody civil war?

Tell us something that makes sense... anything that makes sense, and we'll write that story today.

You can't!

Because you have no idea what happens next.

And neither does anyone else. John. John!

I would rather go back and write for my high school paper... than to be used by you... to sell the American public your bullshit.

All right.

By the way, it's Knight Ridder.

Secretary of State Colin Powell will make the case... against Iraq in a nationally televised address... to the UN Security Council.

Looks like they're bringing in the closer.

Mr. Secretary, are you confident... you will make your case, sir?

You'll see.

What the hell game have we've been playing?

All we did is piss into the wind.

We did our jobs.

I should never have become a reporter.

Damn that Woodward and Bernstein.

They took down a president whose biggest crime... was trying to cover up some dirty political tricks.

This president's about to do the worst thing any president... could do and he'll probably get re-elected.

To the democratic experiment.

Thank you, Mr. President.

My colleagues, every statement I make today... is backed up by sources, solid sources.

The gravity of this moment is matched by the gravity... of the threat that Iraq's weapons of mass destruction... pose to the world.

It was a set up, the whole damn thing was a set up.

Tenet sent Powell a stack of files this high... that supported the invasion.

Saddam Hussein is determined... to get his hands on a nuclear bomb.

Cheney sent Scooter Libby... to push three main arguments in those files.

One: Saddam's human rights abuses... which everybody knew about.

Two: his links to al Qaeda, which Powell... of course, threw right in the trash.

And the third focused on Iraq's WMD.

Leaving Saddam Hussein in possession of weapons... of mass destruction for a few more months or years... is not an option, not in a post-September 11th world.

Over a four-day period, Powell made every single CIA officer... defend every so-called piece of evidence in those files.

He threw out 80% of them.

At the end of the four days...

Powell looked Tenet right in the eye and said...

"George, can we stand by every word of this?"

And Tenet said, "Everything in there is gold, I promise you."

To which Powell replied, "Well, that's good, George.

"I'm glad you feel that way, 'cause you're going to be...

"sitting right behind me when I present this to the world."

We must not fail in our duty and our responsibility... to the citizens of the countries... that are represented by this body.

Colin took one for the team.

Always the good soldier.

Has the Iraqi regime fully... and unconditionally disarmed?

The only acceptable outcome is the one already defined... by a unanimous vote of the Security Council.

Total disarmament.

Great Britain, Spain and the United States have introduced.. a new resolution stating that Iraq has failed to meet... the requirements of Resolution 1441.

This is a fact, it cannot be denied.

And what harm would it do to give...

Saddam a final ultimatum?

A two or three day deadline to disarm or face force?

September the 11th changed the strategic thinking... at least as far as I was concerned... for how to protect our country.

My job is to protect the American people.

Used to be that we could think that you could contain... a person like Saddam Hussein... that oceans would protect us from his type of terror.

September the 11th should say to the American people...


You need to pack your bags.


In the hands of a terrorist organization... could be deployed here at home.

King, John King. This is a scripted...

Thank you, Mr. President.

Sir, how would you answer your critics who say that they...

They think this is somehow personal?

As Senator Kennedy put it tonight... he said your fixation with Saddam Hussein... is making the world a more dangerous place.

And as you prepare the American people for the possibility... of military conflict, could you share with us... any of the scenarios your advisors have shared... with you about worst-case scenarios?

You make sure the... this country knows what's going on out there.

Yeah? I will.

I swore to protect and defend the Constitution.

He has weapons of mass destruction... and he has used weapons of mass destruction.

He has trained and financed... al Qaeda-type organizations before.

I take the threat seriously, and I'll deal with the threat.

I hope it can be done peacefully.

They hate what we stand for.

We love freedom, and we're not changing.

Mr. President, millions of Americans can... recall a time when leaders from both parties set this country.. on a mission of regime change in Vietnam.

50,000 Americans died.

The regime is still there in Hanoi and it hasn't harmed... or threatened a single American in 30 years... since the war ended.

What can you say tonight, sir, to the sons and daughters... of the Americans who served in Vietnam to assure them that... you will not lead this country down a similar path in Iraq?

That's a great question.

No doubt, there's risks with any military operation.

I know that.

It's a good thing he can draw on all that experience he got... while not serving in the National Guard.

But it's very clear what we intend to do.

And our mission won't change.

It could last, you know, six days, six weeks...

I doubt six months.

There's a lot of money to pay for this... that doesn't have to be U.S. taxpayer money.

We're dealing with a country that can really finance... its own reconstruction, and relatively soon.

There will always be some uncertainty... about how quickly he can acquire nuclear weapons... but we don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.

Do you think the America people... are prepared for a long, costly, and bloody battle... with significant American casualties?

I don't think it's likely to unfold that way, Tim... because I really do believe we will be greeted as liberators.

Six weeks after the war had begun, the President... is set to deliver a very carefully worded speech... on a carrier in the Pacific.

My fellow Americans, major combat operations... in Iraq have ended.

In the battle of Iraq, the United States... and our allies have prevailed.

I want to go down there.

They were the first to die.

Were you there?

Thank you.

Thank you, son.

Jonathan, how did it feel, therefore... to be the lone holdouts in this pursuit of truth and fact?

It was very lonely and what made it actually one... of the ironies is... that every time we would write something... the White House would say nothing, because we realized... after a while that that would have been the best... advertising for our stories we could have possibly asked for.

There's a problem with journalism... in Washington, which is access.

And The New York Times and others had access to the top... officials who were spinning this line.

We talked to those people, as well... but most of our reporting, Christiane... was with intelligence, military... and diplomatic mid-level...

Lower level? Lower level.

The types journalists don't normally talk to or go after.

Can I just give a little credit, also, to the man... who was our boss at the time, John Walcott.

Higher levels of civilization... must depend even more heavily... on a conscientious respect for the importance of honesty... and clarity in reporting the facts and out of stubborn... concern for accuracy in determining what the facts are.

We need to find some way to cover the world so that... we know what's happening out there... that we know the truth about it... so we can avoid mistakes... mistakes like Iraq.

The intelligence was what it was.

You know, people like me couldn't make it up.

The intelligence wasn't what it was... and not everybody got it wrong.

Almost everybody did, except for Knight Ridder.