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Watching the Same Movie About American War for 75 Years


#1

Watching the Same Movie About American War for 75 Years

Peter Van Buren

In the age of the all-volunteer military and an endless stream of war zone losses and ties, it can be hard to keep Homeland enthusiasm up for perpetual war. After all, you don't get a 9/11 every year to refresh those images of the barbarians at the airport departure gates. In the meantime, Americans are clearly finding it difficult to remain emotionally roiled up about our confusing wars in Syria and Iraq, the sputtering one in Afghanistan, and various raids, drone attacks, and minor conflicts elsewhere.


#2

At first I thought "Platoon" was realistic.

I guess that, compared to anything which had come before, it was. But the final scene with Elias (religious reference there) led me to conclude that the film was more of a romance than realism, and also that it was a Christian allegory.

"Full Metal Jacket" seemed more realistic to me than "Platoon". I thought that it didn't romanticize war quite as much as "Platoon", but gave a better impression of war's nastiness and horror. That's just how I saw it.

But I don't think either movie is really anti-war.

As for the movies that have come out since 2001 seem to be almost all war propaganda. Of course, all of them (or so I suspect) assume that "the terrorists" or "al Qaeda" or Osama bn Laden were responsible for Sept. 11, even though they could not have been and were not.

The first premise of most or maybe all the post-9/11 films is wrong, and therefore the movies are wrong, and a waste of my time, is the way I see it. All those movies are, in my opinion, just propaganda.

A big question, to me, is why, in film-making and TV show making, are violence and war so prominent, far more than in real life?

Why do Americans love stories about killing and murder, torture and mutilation, above all other themes?
It's like a fetish.
What is wrong with these people?


#3

Bread and Circuses are a good plan, though these days we are cutting out the bread. Movies about murder or war get the adrenalin going. They distract us, if only for a short time, from our real lives. The movie and tv propaganda have been going on for a long time, so we are already on board with the propaganda theme before we see it. This country has a long history of violence in coming to a new land and taking it away from the natives by murder and deceit. Not much later, we started importing slaves to do the heavy work and make life here possible. Of course, they had to be controlled by violence. The story just goes on and on through the violence against union organizing and Jim Crow and the growth of US prison population to the present.

Our whole culture is permeated with the false stories of why America is the greatest country, the exception to all other countries. It is true that the Founders had ideals which were much better than the elites of Britain and the European countries of their time. Our Constitution is a huge advance in government for the world, for those countries adopting a similar one.

It does not excuse our murderous behavior at home and around the world. The propaganda now is to keep us paying taxes relatively cheerfully for our military adventures in order to control the whole world, if we can, even though our own lives have gotten more and more difficult since the 70s with manufacturing sent overseas and no raises keeping up with the cost of living, except for our elite. We need the hype of these movies and tv shows, so we won't think about our reality or especially about the possible better reality, if we rise up and demand it.


#4

Thank you for linking war with porn and beginning THAT discussion.

As for this idea of the narrative following the same script, I think you'd need to dig back deeper into time. There's reason to believe that beliefs become strongly encoded and like stored computer files, get passed down genetically to the next generation. Neuro-science can now match specific behaviors to specific brainwaves, and that means if the brainwaves can be controlled through images and triggering stimuli, the behavior can be sprung into action and that way, tapped. Think aggression and how it supplies the ready manpower for wars... current along with those planned.

Much of the Bible, or how it's been used by church-state elites for centuries has laid the foundation for the good-evil, good religion/bad religion, holy war crusades jihad mentality. And with so much "religiosity" at play in the USA, it's very easy to fit the war between good evil "players" narrative right onto the religious good-evil frame. In fact, it fits like a glove; and I think this helps to explain why so many can be deceived by such diabolical motives streaming in from high places.

The use of modern media as a sensory delivery tool of propaganda is the only thing really new here. Like I said, spin back the wheels of time further to arrive at the root of the problem: where the ideology was born.


#5

Your final statement subliminally relays that it's citizens that make violence and war prominent. Essentially it's arguing that citizens just love that stuff and that's why it's produced. As if it's mostly about ticket sales not maintaining WAR as product.

First of all, it's a good bet that most who go to these films are right wing types and/or Christian conservatives.

Second, it would not be called propaganda if the impulses that breed war were naturally in place. The basis of propaganda is manipulating people.

You're trying to say that people ARE violent and they WANT war. This is another take on the favored forum talking point that always takes what is engineered by small elite groupings and tries to say that the decisions made by this ilk somehow represent the conscious will of the governed.

THAT is a great deception. It differs only by degree from lines like "Voters are responsible" in a system that is first fully vetted, and then controlled from start to finish by Big Capital and its enablers in Big Media.

Either posters who post variations of this theme don't recognize how programmed THEY are, or they are intentionally posting opinions that protect power. Maintaining the illusion that the masses are the deciding factor is The Big Lie.

If power were equitably shared, elections fair, media honest, and a glaring chasm not so apparent between the 1% and just about everyone else, and it's that 1% calling the shots... such a narrative would have merit.


#6

..." though these days we are cutting out the bread."

Who is the WE cutting off the bread? Certainly not the citizens hungry for that bread.

"The movie and tv propaganda have been going on for a long time, so we are already on board with the propaganda theme before we see it."

Who is the all-inclusive WE on-board with propaganda before they see it?

These generalizations speak of all citizens under one mistaken brushstroke. Coincidentally, the brushstroke supports the status-quo-favoring Talking Point that citizens are all conditioned to violence.

Our culture is permeated with false stories... one of which is this idea that all citizens go along with war and fall for propaganda.

If a nation's elections SYSTEM is controlled by two corporately-run bodies, and courts are also part of this Power Structure with media playing the role of sycophant to Power, how can citizens who oppose war and corporate rape of ecosystems stop this bloody juggernaut?

Many attempts of all sorts are underway. That's why blanketing over the varied forms of protest to suggest one uniform citizenry in compliance with Wars of Aggression (engineered on the part of the Deep State) helps to keep the illusion(s) in place.

Good propaganda uses kernels of truth to weave a narrative supportive of the status quo preferred by the MIC/big banks and our corporate overseers.

They do their utmost to keep protests, alternative narratives, and even Truth and its imperiled tellers, off the radar, too.


#7

Veterans For Peace is trying to do something about this . .


#8

“So here’s a question: if the core propaganda messages the U.S. government promoted during World War II are nearly identical to those pushed out today about the Islamic State, and if Hollywood’s war films, themselves a particularly high-class form of propaganda, have promoted the same false images of Americans in conflict from 1941 to the present day, what does that tell us?”

It tells me that the people I live with, the nation I was born in, most leadership of all nations are stuck and have been for over a century. We all are intellectually and emotionally stuck. The foundations for our collective thinking is ancient and archaic which no longer are useful but we have held on to them. They prevent us from moving on from gathering collectively to identify problems and solve them leaving the platitudinous scriptures behind.

We are stuck because we back our answer to everything with 68% of last year’s income and our answer is war. War on drugs, war on poverty, war, war, war. Want democracy we will bring you war. Stuck, stuck stuck. So let us not have any problems until we get unstuck. We have already had one civil war.


#9

My comment about bread and circuses was a bit satirical. The “we” is our government, whether we agree with or voted for those Republican legislators or not.

Your objection: “Who is the all-inclusive WE ‘on-board with propaganda before they see it?’ These generalizations speak of all citizens under one mistaken brushstroke. Coincidentally, the brushstroke supports the status-quo-favoring Talking Point that citizens are all conditioned to violence.”

I did not say nor do I support that “all citizens are conditioned to violence.” Most people who watch tv or go to movies, except those who refuse to watch show or movies they consider violent, are used to seeing it, inured to it, desensitized to it. This is even more true to those playing the very violent and sexist video/online games. Being used to seeing violence does not equate to committing violence, studies have shown, except to the most mentally and emotionally vulnerable.

I don’t see how your post, below, which also generalizes to the whole population, differs from mine in generalizing, yet you objected to mine:
“As for this idea of the narrative following the same script, I think you'd need to dig back deeper into time. There's reason to believe that beliefs become strongly encoded and like stored computer files, get passed down genetically to the next generation. Neuro-science can now match specific behaviors to specific brainwaves, and that means if the brainwaves can be controlled through images and triggering stimuli, the behavior can be sprung into action and that way, tapped. Think aggression and how it supplies the ready manpower for wars... current along with those planned.”

The balance of your post is not in reply to mine, as I did not say anything about the current “SYSTEM” nor anything about “protests.” Where I have previously posted on CR about elections systems, it has been to excoriate the coast-to-coast ballot counting fraud. As to protests, the last line of my post was to encourage people to demand change.

A lot of criticism due to misinterpretation here, sister. I was surprised given our previous communication and the fact that we are almost always in complete agreement.


#10

Peter Van Buren. Telling it. thanks.


#11

You'd think so. That's a bit like thinking that only leftists smoke dope, though.

An addiction is an addiction. Male escapist fantasies ( of any sort ) occur accross the political spectrum, and media makers inject the meme so as to snare anyone. i wish I could say there was no violence in any of my favorite films, but Apocalypse Now and Matewan both have a fair amount of violence.

It does not make either story less compelling or less relevant.