Politico: King on Osama movie: ‘I hit a nerve’
Politico – by Jennifer Epstein
Rep. Peter King begs to differ with White House press secretary Jay Carney’s jab that it’s “ridiculous” for the congressman to suggest the Obama administration could be endangering national security by cooperating with filmmakers working on a movie about Osama bin Laden.
“Obviously, I hit a sensitive nerve,” the House Homeland Security Committee chairman told POLITICO on Thursday morning. “What he said was nonsense — there has been so much classified information released over the last 90 days” since bin Laden was killed in a raid on his Pakistan compound.
On Wednesday, the New York Republican released a letter to the inspectors general of the Defense Department and the Central Intelligence Agency voicing concern about the administration’s work with Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal, the director and screenwriter who produced the Academy Award-winning “The Hurt Locker.”
At his daily press briefing on Wednesday, Carney said that King’s “claims are ridiculous.”
“We do not discuss classified information,” he said, “and 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 than a movie.”
But King shot back on Thursday, saying, “It’s ridiculous for [Carney] not to realize how much sensitive information there has been disclosed … he doesn’t know how the enemy analyzes this inside out, how Al Qaeda or the Taliban might use something.”
Most of the information about the raid that the White House has given to reporters and others “has been focused on the president’s role” in it, Carney said, and the most specific information released by the White House about the raid itself “I read to you from this podium.”
King said he wants to see the Defense and CIA inspector generals “lay out exactly what the ground rules are, what the parameters are, who’s meeting with whom” to ensure that classified information about the bin Laden raid stays that way.
“It shouldn’t have been out there that SEAL Team 6 did this, and there have been so many details out there” in press accounts, King said. “And now we find out they are cooperating with a movie — what are we doing?”
King spoke to POLITICO soon after finishing an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” in which the Long Islander was asked about his views on likely presidential candidate Gov. Rick Perry (R-Texas) and whether Congress should come back into session, but not about his widely publicized call for a probe into the White House’s cooperation with the Osama film.
“I assumed I was going to talk about the movie,” King said, “but with Scarborough, it can go in a different direction.”