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Touch A Sore Spot, President Clinton?

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Bill Clinton erupts when Chris Wallace makes the gentlest of inquiries about the new book The Looming Tower. 

Watch the whole thing, and bookmark Bill’s admission that the 9/11 Commission Report was a “political document.”  It was, of course, but only in the sense that it bent over to attempt to keep the Clinton Adminstration from suffering too much scrutiny.

But books like Lawrence Wright’s cannot be manipulated, and so Clinton launches into a furious counterattack on Wallace, Fox and ABC, the Bush Administration and right wing critics and media. This fascinating bit of theater –part paranoia, part panic– distills Clinton’s argument to: “Who you going to believe, Dick Clarke and his memoir, or everybody and everything else?”

Bill Clinton’s record vis-a-vis Osama cannot withstand even two minutes of sharp questions-and-answers.  He’s obliged to tightly control every encounter with the press, denounce every serious work of history, obfuscate by pointing to meeting after meeting or to non-sequitors like the fact that no one knew at the time that Osama was connected to Mogadishu (but when, Mr. Clinton, did you become aware of his connection), legal tap dancing –the FBI and CIA wouldn’t let me do it– and the worst of all, chest thumping about how he’d be waging the war if he was still president.

Whatever Clinton hoped to accomplish with this childish filibuster and tantrum, it guaranteed the opposite:  No such fury is required when the facts are on your side.  You don’t have to control every encounter and explode with anger and accusations when asked if you would like to comment on a new book.

Here’s just one relevant excerpt from my interview with Lawrence Wright on Friday:

LW: You know, it’s actually


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