During a eight minute interview, Tuesday's CBS This Morning helped left-wing radical Oliver Stone promote his latest project - a revisionist documentary and book on World War II and the beginning of the Cold War that credits the Soviet Union for winning World War II and indicting the United States for its supposed "history of aggression."
Anchor Charlie Rose omitted a key part of the New York Times critique of Stone's project when he noted that the liberal newspaper "called your series 'a ten-part indictment of the United States that doesn't pretend to be even-handed'." Reviewer Alessandra Stanley had also charged that the documentary "sounds almost like a parody, a sendup of that filmmaker's love of bombast and right-wing conspiracy." The leftist director flatly denied he wasn't being even-handed. [audio clips available here; video below the jump]
OLIVER STONE: No, I don't think so. They said a few other things that I don't agree with, but coming from the establishment press...I'm not surprised. You know, we've done a very – not only untold, but un-boring history of the United States. There's a reason high school students... across the country...do not study history and do not know history. It's because they've cut out all the good parts."
When co-anchor Gayle King followed up by asking the "the origin myths of World War II," Stone dropped his pro-Soviet claim about the end of the conflict:
STONE: ...We acknowledge the Soviet contribution - the major contribution that they made. They actually won World War II on land, and they beat the German military machine, which is not something you learn ordinarily in school. We go from there to the dropping of the atomic bomb - which was militarily and morally, obviously, unnecessary - and we go from there to the origins of the Cold War. So, in these first three chapters...we cover the whole beginnings of this American national security and global security state that we have.
The left-wing filmmaker blasted the past sixty years of American foreign policy, including that of ideological fellow traveler President Obama. As you might expect, Rose and O'Donnell rushed to the President's defense:
STONE: ....I think what's lacking in our foreign policy, and in our policy in general, is that we have an American exceptionalism. We consider ourselves - as Obama recently said again - the indispensable nation, and as long as we have that attitude, we do not have the ability, the empathy, or the compassion to see the world as a global – as a globe of which we are a partner. And we are operating on the edge of a very dangerous precipice, where we continue to contain and to find – and to find enemies, and find a reason to bloat our military budgets, which is enormous, as you know right now.
CHARLIE ROSE: The President also said that other nations feel that way about their country - that they're exceptional and indispensable.
STONE: That's not true. No country that I've been to in my life has ever felt they were the indispensable nation for the world, and could dictate to others what to do with their lives or police their countries-
NORAH O'DONNELL: China?
STONE: No. They have one foreign base. We have 800-plus bases. China has – never has – no – has not a history of aggression. The United States does, and we deal with this in the book.
To her credit, O'Donnell played hardball with Stone when he attacked Americans' high respect for the military in the middle of ripping former CIA Director David Petraeus:
STONE: So, when he appears in...Congress with - I don't know if you saw the rogue medals the first time he appeared....He seemed to woo the congressmen. They were falling at his feet. The military worship in this country has reached unhealthy proportions. The second time he appeared - I don't know if you saw it - but it was about this much....And the third time I saw him, it was about falling off his jacket, you know? General Marshall, by example, in World War II, one of our great leaders, rarely wore his medals in public-
O'DONNELL: But why should we not honor those who fought and died for this country? At the end of the day, it's civilian leadership that sends them to war.
STONE: I am all for honoring people who serve. I mean, I did serve, and I – I'm a veteran myself. But I don't believe in false worship and hero worship and the kind of hysteria that we've seen. Petraeus has not a record of success in Iraq. More people – people died as a result of the surge - Americans and more Iraqis - and in Afghanistan, he's begun a policy that's essentially backfired, because the drone attacks are creating more enemies for America in the future
Near the end of the interview, Rose tried to get him to admit to his far left ideology. He didn't give a direct answer, but again went out of his way to attack U.S. foreign policy:
ROSE: Define your own political philosophy, as we talk about your own view of America....
STONE: My political philosophy is live and let live as much as you can. We cannot be global policemen. We have to be regional partners with every country in the world, like – whether it's Venezuela, Brazil - into South America; whether it's China, Russia, Turkey – respect regional powers; join the – join the world community-
ROSE: So, therefore, the United States should not listen to arguments, on the part of anybody – no international organizations should listen to any arguments about going into Syria - or supporting the rebels in Syria, in your judgment, because that-
STONE: Well, in the Syrian story – you know, we're going into another world completely, but first of all, we've got to get our intelligence correct. We don't know exactly what's happened in Syria, and I don't think we should fight a war on that basis - or in Libya.
And, as to international organizations, it would be a good idea for us to join one. We did not – we are really an outlier. We are the only nation that has resisted the United Nations....demilitarization of space.