*edit, July 2, 2015 – I just re-read this and the final part of my online response, after the quote from Peter Maass, I must say, looks unfamiliar to me. I don’t recall writing it. Because the enclosing characters for my quoted online response (which included my quote of Peter) were screwed up, I thought that maybe I had quoted someone but missed indicating that, so that who I quoted is also missing. If so, I don’t know who it may have been. I used my browser’s edit feature on the linked-to Democracy Now segment featuring David Cay Johnston, but that didn’t pan out. I’ll leave the post as I found it – with the exception of the messed up enclosing characters – in case it’s what I wrote. But I have my doubts. Who knows?
An excerpt from the above linked-to article by Michelle Tauber follows:
Chris Kyle didn’t waver on the battlefield. As he saw it, he had one job to do – protect his fellow troops – and he did so with unflinching focus.
But back home following his four tours of Iraq, the Navy SEAL – whose 2012 autobiography, American Sniper, is the basis for director Clint Eastwood’s Oscar-nominated film of the same name starring Bradley Cooper – struggled with the after-effects of war. And he shared his struggles with others going through the same thing…
Before his death in 2013, Kyle – who was fatally shot on a Texas gun range at age 38 while trying to help a veteran allegedly suffering from PTSD – believed passionately in raising awareness for veterans’ causes. Now, with the massive box-office success of American Sniper, his mission is reaching more people than ever.
I didn’t see the movie and don’t want to. But I might if it’s the only way to know for sure that what Peter Maass says is true and what Michelle Tauber, in her article written well after the movie opened, says is false. How can Eastwood’s and Cooper’s movie, which Cooper defended as being not about politics (and not something that would generate discussion of important issues therefore), be what Tauber is claiming it is if its producers left out details like those surrounding Kyle’s death? If you, dear reader, have seen the movie and have some thoughts on it, Please share them with me and my other readers.
My online response to the above linked-to article follows:
Well, Zergnet reveals itself. That’s where I found the link to this article, which doesn’t interest me because I don’t bow to any flag on demand. All states are godless.
Sniper, like just about all such movies, is merely a recruitment tool. Duh! You (to whom it applies) could know that if you cared to. The subject is looked at in detail in Tricia Jenkins’s book, “The CIA In Hollywood.” The 1% uses all manner of tools, including the state’s instruments of repression, to protect itself. And it calls that national security, laughably. (Bertrande Aristide, who I’m not a fan of, and others certainly know, from experience, what national armies and police forces are all about. They are about keeping the domestic population in it’s place for one thing. See pages 31, 69, 70 of Peter Hallward’s “Damming The Flood.”) Don’t you just get so sick of hearing ‘our’ this and ‘we’ that? The Right is something else. While conducting the most vicious class warfare, it then turns on anyone who points that out and even charges them with engaging in class warfare, as recently happened in connection with Obama’s State Of The Union address (http://bitly.com/1Cbtq1T).
While the divide between the rich and poor is so wide Hubble might not see from one side to the other, Detroit citizens are free to hope that they can somehow acquire water now that the privatizers (neoliberal capitalism in action) are telling them to pay up even if they can’t (http://bit.ly/1yLBntm), while police are increasingly militarized so that the mic can keep making money making weapons (http://bit.ly/1owUJ1i) and the political class, which serves the corporate class (including the mic), plans no changes to the ‘austerity for the majority and prosperity for the minority’ approach which means squeezed people, which means angry reactions, as anticipated, and the heavy handed police response. The investment opportunities are certainly there though. (And Canada follows the US since our border is mostly just a sentiment. See Murray Dobbin’s article titled “This Is The Security State Steve Built” at http://bit.ly/1Jqo5nt )
American Sniper is clearly nothing more than another recruitment tool and it won’t be the last and that’s because it works. That Sniper is nothing more is clear from the fact that it’s producers had to make an effort to ‘not’ look at some pretty darn relevant and important (discussion generating) facts in deciding what to include and exclude, as Peter Maass notes. From his article titled “How Clint Eastwood Ignores History In ‘American Sniper'”:
The problem is that the film makes no attempt to tell us anything beyond Kyle’s limited comprehension of what was happening. More than a decade after America invaded and occupied Iraq, and long after we realized the war’s false pretense and its horrific toll, we deserve better…
While it is about a certain type of bravery, the film itself is not brave. One of the things it does well is highlight Kyle’s post-traumatic stress disorder. But there is no mention of the problems returning soldiers often encounter when they try to get treatment at military hospitals–even though the disturbed veteran who killed Kyle in real life, at a Texas shooting range in 2013, had been denied the care he desperately needed. Why ignore an issue of national importance that is also the reason Kyle is no longer with us?
The conclusion that the world’s dominant economic model — a globalized form of neoliberal capitalism, largely based on international trade and fueled by extracting and consuming natural resources — is the driving force behind planetary destruction will not come as a shock, but the model’s detailed description of how this has worked since the middle of the 20th century makes a more substantial case than many previous attempts.