No. 88 STORM Janus 2011
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DVD REVIEW: Waltz with Bashir (in Hebrew) 115 mins 2008.
By ARTE France, Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg, Channel 8, Israeli Film Fund. Producers Serge Laloy, Yael Nahlieli, Gerhard Meixner & Roman Paul. Written produced & directed by Ari Folman. [Some may object to listening to Hebrew for 115 minutes but this film will dispel any myths about the IDF being a ‘super army’. You will see they’re akin to the US Army in Iraq & just as prone to cowardice, failure and ‘friendly fire’. RE].
Interview by David Stratton of ABC TV (Australia) At the Movies show with director Ari Folman:
“the film is entirely autobiographical. I did it as therapy for my time in Lebanon in 1982. I really did have total memory loss about that period. Then one day an old army buddy, Boaz Rein-Buskila, came to tell me of nightmares he’d had every night for the past 30 months. He asked: ‘do you also have nightmares from that time?’ ‘No‘, I said. That made me wonder. That was in winter 2006. Then, that night, for the first time in 20 years I had a brief ’flashback’ to the War. I began to question veteran of Lebanon they also had either partial memory loss or nightmares. But why?
That was the genesis for this film. The next day I went to see a psychiatrist friend, Ori Sivan. I asked: why would Boaz‘s memory trigger mine?” He answered: “memory is fascinating. We tried this experiment. A group of people are shown 10 various childhood images. Nine photos were really from their childhood but one was fake. Their portrait had been placed into a fairground they had never visited. 80% recognised themselves in the photo and said ‘yes I remember that!’ The other 20% were not sure.
When asked a second time they also ‘remembered‘. They would say ‘what a wonderful day at the park with my parents!’ They remembered a completely fabricated experience. How could this occur? Memory is dynamic; its alive. If some details are missing memory fills the holes with things that never happened”.[Like those who claim they saw gas chambers in Dachau, Bergen-Belsen & Madianek KLs? If this is a recognised psychiatric disorder why are holohoax lies taken as ‘evidence’? RE].
Ari visited fellow vet Carmi Cna’an in Holland where he has been living for the 20 years since Lebanon. Ari asked:
“How you become so rich? Everyone at school thought you’d become a nuclear physicist!” “No, I made money selling falafels to health-conscious Dutchwomen. In three years I’d made my fortune“.[Another case of memory filling in factual gaps. RE].
"Carmi was in Ari’s unit but has memories Ari does not. Carmi remembers them being landed in secret on a beach in Lebanon and shooting up the first Mercedes they saw drive past, killing a whole family. A war crime but Camri puts it down to “pure fear & anxiety. We began shooting like lunatics”. “At what?” “I don’t know! At everything. After two years training, the fear, the uncontrollable fear. We destroyed them & we didn’t even know where we were”.By checking their dates it turns out both Ari & Carmi were in West Beirut, posted in oversite positions around the Sabra & Shatila Palestinian refugee camps while Christian Phalangist militia carried out the massacre of 800 men, women and children. Yet neither has any memory of it. A blank. But on the return trip to Amsterdam airport, while in the taxi, Ari has a ’flashback’. He is driving a M113 armoured personnel carrier in Lebanon and has been ordered to “take the units dead and wounded and dump them at the big lights”.
Unsure, they load up and drive off. The entire crew fires the vehicles heavy weapons, in all directions, as they travel like frightened children. The ’big lights’ turn out to be a heli-pad where dozens of IDF dead are being assembled for a chopper flight back home. Only now does Ari remember the stench of blood and guts inside the APC.
Fellow vet Ronny Dayag was a tank crewman. He recalls the 1982 invasion as 'a joyride’ till his tank commander got killed by a sniper. Soon after his and the following tank were destroyed in an ambush. All crew from both were then machine-gunned. Only he escaped. The rest of thank column simply fled in retreat, leaving him behind.
[Neither IDF nor PLO took prisoners. A race war knows no mercy. RE].
Ari’s other friend Shmuel Frenkel remembers everything. Now a martial arts expert, he enjoyed the war. Boasts of killing children, civilians, anyone. Ari asks: “ was I there, too?” Frenkel: “since training school you’ve always been at my side”. So how could he forget this? Asks Professor Zahava Solomon, post traumatic street expert. She: “it occurs when a person is in a situation but feels outside of it”. Ari admits he remembers every ’furlough’ from the war but nothing about the war itself.
Carmi suddenly recalls: “we were together in the ‘slaughterhouse’, a junkyard where captured PLO were brought to be tortured, dissected then executed. People were wandering around with body parts in jars. It was like being on an LSD trip!” Eventually Ari recovers his memory of the twin camp massacres - but lays the blame on the Christians when the world knows they were simply obeying IDF orders. His friend Dror Harazi, a tank gunner also in on over-site at Sabra camp, admits “the Christian soldiers wore Israeli uniforms". [Where’d they get these from? Steal them?! RE]
Popular TV reporter Ron Ben-Yishai claims it was his personal intervention that stopped the 'Christian massacre’. How?
“I was asked by a colonel friend at the airport that day: ’did you know they’re massacring Palestinians in the camps’? That night Micha Friedman took me to dinner in Beirut’s Baabda district with members of 211 Brigade. They said the same thing. So at 11.30 pm I ‘phoned [Israeli Defence Minister] Arik Sharon. He showed no reaction. At 5.30am the next morning I took my entire TV crew with me to the camps. But as I arrived so did Brigadier Amos. I watched as lines of women & children were being marched off to their death - you know like that photo from the Warsaw ghetto? Just then I heard Brigadier Amos shout an order through his loud-hailer: ’the shooting is to stop’. That’s how it all ended“.[Why didn't Ron’s TV crew take any photos of these 'lines of women & children’. Story is false. RE].
Ari [and his psychiatrist] conclude: “the Christians carried out the massacre that went on all night. My unit fired illumination rounds [flares] so they could work on into the night. Was I personally firing flares? What difference does it make?” His psych admits: “you were unwillingly cast into the role of a Nazi”.
[Typical Chosen response whenever they are called to account for their evil deeds. 1. Blame someone else. 2. Deny personal responsibility. 3. When 1 & 2 fail say: “well, so what?”]
Despite self-serving factual flaws this war film gets 4 1/2 stars out of five as the best War film of 2008. Compared to patriotic rubbish like Hurt Locker, Jarhead, Stop Loss & other Hollywood propaganda about Iraq this is real. Has the best ‘fog of war’ since Kubrick’s Full Metal Jacket and its print inspiration, Michael Herr’s Despatches.
DVD REVIEW: Patty Hearst: the Kidnapping of an American Princess (1988) (140 minutes).
Executive producer Marvin Rosenblatt(J); director Paul Schrader(J) for Atlantic Entertainment. Stars Natasha Richardson. Based on book Every Secret Thing by Patricia Campbell Hearst & Alvin Moscow from Avon Books.
THE KIDNAPPING: On April 1 1974 newspaper heiress Patricia Campbell (‘Patty’) Hearst was kidnapped by a small urban terrorist group, the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA). Patty was held in a small closet, blindfolded and in total darkness for 56 days & nights where she was raped & psychologically tortured by the entire gang. Finally she ‘cracked’ and was ‘turned’. How? Since 1974 there had been observed the Stockholm Syndrome where captives slowly begin to identify with their captors. Patty was an extreme case going so far as to aid the gang in the bank robberies with which they funded their activities.
She was rescued by an FBI raid on an SLA safe-house, 18 September 1975 after being a hostage for 19 months. There was no public celebrations at her escape. Instead, in inimitable US-style, Patty was put on trial for crimes committed whilst a hostage. She was subsequently convicted of ‘armed robbery’ & ‘use of a firearm in a felony’ & was only freed after a Presidential pardon granted February 1st 1979.
THE TIMES: How to explain such this strange treatment of a victim? To gauge the sentiments of the times here’s an insert of the film’s dialogue from the pre-trial discussion. Her lawyer says to the prosecutor:
‘how’s she gonna get a fair trial? In the 1960’s every parent sent their nice normal kid of to college and bingo! It was like the kid got kidnapped by the counter-culture, turned into a commie and says ‘f--k you!’ to society and his parents, lives in a commune and has free sex with negroes and homosexuals”. “So?”
“So they think Patty did the same thing“. “Didn’t she?”
WHO WERE THE SLA? They were by a Negro petty felon, Donald De Freeze also known as Field Marshal Cinque. Cinque was sole black in the SLA’s all-white ‘combat unit’; remainder were five white females and two white men. The females included Jewish lesbians Zoya, Gelina & Gabi. Fahizah. The men were ‘Cujo’ (William Wolfe); ‘Teko’ (Bill Harris) his wife ‘Yolanda’ (Emily Harris). The Harris’ later got eight years for kidnapping, robbery & auto theft. After release from prison Bill found work with a legal firm. Only Asian SLA member was Japanese-American Wendy Yoshimura who described SLA’s unusual structure, with a black leading an all-white group, as ‘wanting a black master to assuage your honky, white guilt’.
SLA members were sexually active with each other regularly performing homosexual and group sex acts & with their captive Hearst. Cinque, a self-styled ‘Prophet’, had his pick of both men & women. None were allowed to refuse as this would be seen as both ‘racist‘ & ‘un-comradely’. The SLA could be seen more as a personality cult than a guerrilla group. Compare David Koresh’s Branch Davidian cult in Waco, TX and the Jim Jones People’s Temple cult in San Francisco. In all three cases sexual & racial pluralism lead to eventual implosion & death.
US URBAN TERRORISTS: The short-lived SLA had none of the cohesion of its much larger Ultra-Leftist rival, the Weathermen which operating at around the same time. Both groups, like similar European cells, had their origins among Upper middle-class white youths radicalised by campus struggles against the Vietnam War, 1962-75. US youth were radicalised by Nixon’s crackdown on Uni protests culminating in 1970 with the Kent State massacre by National Guardsmen. A majority of middle class parents agreed with the State: it had a legitimate right to defend itself from internal foes whilst engaged in a external war.
University Leftists took the opposite view. They saw any attempt to halt their increasing violence support for the North Vietnamese & Viet Cong as ’oppression’. They declared ’war’ on Nixon and in fact their own parents. Whereas many Weatherman still have not been caught or convicted the higher profile SLA, with its unusual racial mix, was a direct challenge to white dominance and was smashed. Another unique feature of the SLA was the predominance of youth women, many of them Jews.
END OF THE SLA: Zoya, Fahizah, Gelina, Gabi, Cinque & Cujo all died in 1975 during a police assault on their ‘safe-house’, 84th Street, Los Angeles. When they refused police demands to surrender officers ’accidentally’ set fire to the house using tear gas much as later occurred in 1993 to the Branch Davidians Compound, in Waco, TX. Steve Weeds wrote his book My Search For Patty Hearst without ever having talked to her. Hearst’s trial lawyer F. Lee Bailey wrote an unpublished manuscript dealing with her case. Wendy Yoshimura was convicted on weapons charges & served a short prison term. None of the later SLA have ever been convicted of anything.
DVD REVIEW: The Valley of Elah (2008) (116 minutes)
Writer, producer, director Paul Haggis for Warner Independent Films. Stars Tommy Lee Jones, Susan Sarandon, Charlize Theron and Josh Brolin. Cast alone should have been a warning, but I’d read nothing but rave reviews of this film. However, JB is son of Barbra Streisand, one of the leading Hollywood Leftists as is SS. Now apparently also CT. CT earlier embraced Nelson Mandela, calling him ‘father’. Woman’s magazines carried stories of her ‘racist’ Afrikaaner father who allegedly tried to murder her and her mother before killing himself. But, on the basis of universal praise, I rented it.
TLJ plays to ‘type’. His usual stereotypical hard bitten cop, this time a retired US Military Policeman. His first son was killed in Iraq War I. His second has just survived a tour in Iraq War II when he is found butchered and burnt only four days after returning to the US. TLJ investigates after police, both civil & military, show no interest. They write it off as ‘drug-related violence’. TLJ finds instead it was his son’s own comrades who did him in. In the process he exposes a unit, and an Army, where pathological behaviour is the norm. This is the final conclusion of this long, slow and very dull film: the unjustified Iraq Wars waged by Bush I & II has mutated the once honourable USA into a place where evil triumphs. As a result the amoral Army that fought these wars is now unable to distinguish right from wrong.
HOLLYWOOD AS HEROES? A good point - that an immoral society cannot expect to fight moral wars or have a moral army - but coming from the Hollywood Left it is unbelievable. Ever heard of Roe vs Wade, 1973? Who was it that degraded the human embryo to just ‘pregnancy tissue’? Then they act surprised that after 37 years of inhumane, illogical laws their society is imploding. Hello! These are the same ‘educated idiots’ who boast of ’woman’s right to choose’ - but only as long as the choice is MURDER. Every new evil is applauded by the Hollywood Left, from unmarried mothers, to teen pregnancies to ‘gay marriage‘.
s why so many, and not just Islamist militants, shout: ’GOD damn America’. Where did it all begin? Scripture says: “the fool says in his heart: ’there is no GOD’ ” (Psalm 14 v 1). The result? “They are corrupt, do abominable things & none do good“ (ibid). Iis why the godless Left cannot correctly analyse its own dilemma: they deny First Principles. Like the captain of Titanic in denial they may still argue ’what killed America?’ 100 years from now. What killed America? Rampant atheism & resultant moral ambiguity. Like soldiers without bullets Americans have been morally disarmed.
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