Ed Driscoll

Michael Moore Backpedals

Speaking of Jimmy Carter, Michael Moore, who shared a box seat with Carter at the convention on Monday, is now backpedaling on a key premise of Fahrenheit 9/11:

Left-wing filmmaker Michael Moore on Tuesday appeared to back off his earlier allegation regarding President Bush’s involvement in the flights of Saudi Arabian citizens out of the U.S. in the days following the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

CNSNews.com asked Moore on Tuesday if he still believed that President Bush was directly involved in approving the flights of Saudi Arabian citizens out of the U.S., given Richard Clarke’s admission that he alone authorized the flights. Clarke is a former White House counter-terrorism official and a Bush critic.

“What I said in the film (Fahrenheit 9/11) was that the White House authorized it. Richard Clarke worked for the president, he was part of the White House and he took the word of the FBI,” Moore told CNSNews.com, following his fiery speech to a “Take Back America” event, organized by the Campaign for America’s Future.

But Moore’s response on Tuesday differed from his earlier allegations that Bush took time out of his day on Sept. 11, 2001 to contemplate what he could “do to help the bin Ladens.”

Moore told Pacifica radio last October, “So here is Bush trying to deal with everything on Sept. 11, 12, 13th, you know. You remember, everybody remembers, the total state of chaos and people, just everyone, all of us, discombobulated by the whole thing, and he had the time to be thinking — what can I do to help the bin Ladens right now?”

But in May, Clarke admitted that he alone approved the exit of bin Laden’s relatives — contradicting one of the central premises of Moore’s film.

The decision to approve the flights, Clarke admitted, had been his own. The request “didn’t get any higher than me,” he told The Hill newspaper.

“On 9/11, 9/12 and 9/13, many things didn’t get any higher than me. I decided it in consultation with the FBI,” Clarke said of the flight carrying bin Laden’s relatives.

Does this mean that Moore will now sue himself?

Shortly after F9/11 debuted, Brent Bozell wrote:

For the Left, this film is a test to separate the wheat from the chaff, the honorable from the dishonorable, the serious from the unserious. In the Clinton years, conservatives needed to step away from the unsubstantiated videos that talked in conspiratorial tones about all of Clinton