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  Sunday  August 18  2002    11: 37 AM

War Agasint Some Terrorists

Be Very Afraid - Bush Productions is Preparing to Go Into Action

But the important thing, as my dad used to tell me, was to remember that the cinema did not really imitate reality. Newly converted Christian centurions did not go so blithely to their deaths nor did love reign supreme on the Titanic. The fighter pilots of Pearl Harbor did not perform so heroically, nor did wicked Roman emperors die so young. From John Wayne's The Green Berets, war films have lied to us about life and death. After the crimes against humanity in New York and Washington last September, I suppose it was inevitable that the Pentagon and the CIA would call on Hollywood for ideas yes, the movie boys actually did go to Washington to do a little synergy with the local princes of darkness. But when Vice-President Cheney and Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld turned up together for the premier of Black Hawk Dawn, I began to get worried.

After all, if the Bush administration is so keen on war, it better work out the difference between Hollywood and the real thing. Yet what we've been getting is a movie version of reality, a work of fiction to justify the prospect of "war without end". It started, of course, with all the drivel about "crusades" and "war against terror" and "war against evil", the now famous "they hate us because we are a democracy", the "axis of evil" and most recently it would be outlandishly funny if this trash hadn't come from the Rand Corporation the "kernel of evil". The latter, by the way, is supposed to be Saudi Arabia, but it might just as well have been Iran, Iraq, Syria or anywhere west of the Pecos. Along with this tosh, history is being falsified. Even a crime movie supplies a motive for the crime but after 11 September, Bush Productions would allow no motives to be discussed. The identity and religion of the perpetrators was permissible information: they were Arabs, Muslims. But the moment any of us suggested glancing towards the area from which these Arabs came an area rich in injustice, oppression, occupation and UN-sanctioned child death we were, as I've described before in this column, subjected to a campaign of calumny. [read more]