Injured reservist surprised
to be shown in Moore film

By WND Staff

An Army reservist who lost parts of both arms in the war in Iraq was surprised to discover he appears in Michael Moore’s anti-Bush film “Fahrenheit 9/11.”

Peter Damon, now recuperating at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C. from an October incident, is shown in the controversial film in a hospital speaking to an off-camera interviewer, The Enterprise newspaper of Brockton, Mass., reports.

His wife, Jennifer Damon, said neither she nor her husband were aware the footage, from NBC Nightly News, would be used in the film.

“He’s in there,” she told the paper. “I saw it and I told him that he should probably go see it too.”

Damon was working on a Blackhawk helicopter in Balad, Iraq, Oct. 21 when a tire exploded. He appears in the clip with his injured arms in bandages, speaking for about half a minute after a voice-over by Moore introduces that part of the film.

Released June 25, “Fahrenheit 9/11” so far has earned $80.1 million. In its scathing denunciation of President Bush, the film shows graphic footage of bodies of U.S. soldiers in Iraq being burned.

John Gonsalves, founder of Homes For Our Troops, a group working to build the Damons a home, said he learned from a neighbor of Peter’s appearance in the film.

“I was shocked. I would have expected if Peter was in the movie that someone would have at least talked to him about it, which I thought was kind of unfair,” Gonsalves told The Enterprise. “I think for Michael Moore to portray Peter in there without any knowledge is terrible.”

The Brockton paper said it received no response by press time from the film’s New York City publicity firm, Ken Sunshine Consultants Inc.

NBC News says it’s the practice of all news organizations to license its footage and, as a general rule, NBC does not obtain releases from people who appear on their news programs.

But it would be the responsibility of Moore to get permission.

“When we do license footage ? as in this instance ? NBC includes a provision that it is the responsibility of the licensee, not NBC, to obtain all required consents and releases necessary to use the footage,” wrote spokeswoman Barbara Levin

Jennifer Damon told The Enterprise only her husband could comment on the consent issue. The paper said it could not be determined by press time whether Peter Damon signed any release form with NBC.