Watching it again in the current "Bush-hate" climate is illuminating; out of all the exposes of Bush's purported crimes, I haven't seen one that comes anywhere near the credibility and comprehensiveness of Rules of Engagement. Even for a sceptical home viewer such as myself, the docco demolished any belief I may have had in the ATF's and FBI's version of events. For me, there were no "on the other hand", "hang on a minute" or "what about..." type moments that liberally pepper the output of Michael Moore, Naomi Klein and those of their ilk. The federal agencies at Waco, monitored and controlled by Washington, at best routinely lied to the American people about the situation there after unnecessarily allowing it to develop to the point whereby 86 people - many of them children - died horrifically. At worst, these agencies provoked and inflamed the confrontation, burnt the building and shot those escaping from a wing that the news cameras couldn't monitor.
This movie makes me baulk at the current hysterical climate Bush's opponents have created. I remember thinking when watching this movie - why aren't the liberals up in arms about this travesty? Why aren't they burning Bush effigies all over the place for this? Oh yes, Bush wasn't in power then. Just goes to show how even a sceptic like myself has become conditioned to form judgement at the slightest whiff of non-event. When something truly horrendous occurs, I'm reminded of how trivial many of Bush's alleged misdemeanours are, and how wildly oversensitive his opponents have become. Waco clearly showed that partisan interests were involved; during the Senate hearings investigating the fiasco, the Dems were broadly defending the Feds whilst the Republicans were busting balls. Imagine if a Waco-type event was exposed during Bush's watch (by Waco-type event I mean one where both sides of grassroots politics concede that federal outfits exhibited blatant and undeniable ham-fistedness, callousness and brutality) - Bush'd burn for it, and rightfully so. Why didn't Clinton?