Synopsis by Hal Erickson
For this National Geographic TV special, FBI director Robert Mueller gave the filmmakers unprecedented access to the inner working of the law-enforcement bureau. Though the focus is of course on the anti-terrorism war of the early 21st century, this laudatory campaign is placed in context with the FBI's checkered history. No mere "spin job," the documentary is unsparing in its criticism of some of the bureau's unsavory covert activities under the aegis of long-time director J. Edgar Hoover, and also underlines the eccentricities of later director Louie Freeh (among them the man's near-phobic hostility toward computer technology). As part of Mueller's efforts to reestablish national confidence in the Bureau, the film gives ample time to the efficiency of the FBI's latter-day modus operandi, including behind-the-scenes sequences involving a White House security briefing, a large-scale Congressional Hearing, and the painstaking measures taken to select new FBI agents. Narrated by actor Dennis Haysbert, The FBI was first aired on PBS.
behind-the-scenes, counterterrorism, covert-operation, FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation), law-enforcement, national-security, top-secret, White-House