Category: War

The People’s Tribunal on the Iraq War – Live Stream Dec. 1 & 2

Code Pink:

The People’s Tribunal on the Iraq War: After 14 years of costly war based on lies, it’s time for truth and accountability. The People’s Tribunal on the Iraq War will unify the global anti-war/peace movements with other justice movements by uplifting testimonies of the costs of this war—and war itself. The Tribunal will bring the lies that created the war on Iraq into public awareness, while demanding Obama act on them. It will build and inspire the anti-war movement that we will need after the inauguration of the next administration in 2017. It will be a tool that all groups can use to build, inspire, and enliven their organizations and communities. Testifiers Day One and Two.

Visit Code Pink’s Iraq Tribunal website at IraqTribunal.org

STOP The War Supplemental Bill

STOP The War Supplemental Bill Sign the Roots Action petition. President Obama waited until after the election to ask Congress for $11.6 billion extra — outside the huge existing military budget — for wars. This massive pile of money, equivalent…

Faces of the Enemy

The documentary, Faces of the Enemy, was first broadcast on PBS in May of 1987.

Says California Newsreel:

As relevant today as when it was first released, Faces of the Enemy follows social psychologist Sam Keen as he unmasks how individuals and nations dehumanize their enemies to justify the inhumanity of war.

  • Continue reading the California Newsreel piece about Faces of the Enemy below the video.

NYT review:

TV Reviews: ‘Faces of the Enemy,’ a Documentary

California Newsreel:

As relevant today as when it was first released, Faces of the Enemy follows social psychologist Sam Keen as he unmasks how individuals and nations dehumanize their enemies to justify the inhumanity of war.

Using archival news footage, public service announcements, and editorial cartoons, Keen unveils the same frightening pattern in conflict after conflict – World War II, the Vietnam War, the Cold War, Islamic and Christian Fundamentalism – and prefigures the current War on Terrorism. First we identify ourselves as victims. Then we blame, demonize and finally dehumanize our adversaries, rationalizing our murder of other human beings.

Faces of the Enemy contends that before a drop of blood is spilled we must ‘think each other to death.’ It is a story replayed on the nightly news, in Islamic Fundamentalists’ characterization of the West as the ‘Great Satan’ and our own stereotyping of Muslims as terrorists. In a revealing examination of the images and iconography of war Keen interviews the nation’s leading editorial cartoonists. They discuss how they use an almost universal language of stereotypes and prejudices to tap into readers’ most visceral emotions.

In a chilling example of the psychological roots of enmity, we meet David Rice, an unemployed welder now an inmate on Death Row. Influenced by far-right propaganda, Rice decided communism was responsible for his personal problems. He bludgeoned to death a family of four whom he (mistakenly) thought were communists. He remains without remorse regarding them as ‘collateral damage’ in a war against the Evil Empire. The Christian Fundamentalist leaders who inspired Rice are only too happy to explain that they are in a holy war against communists and any non-believers.

By contrast, William Broyles, a Viet Nam veteran and author, returned after the war to personalize the individuals who had been his enemies’ to humanize the abstractions. He explains how racist terms and images can be used to turn human beings into monsters. These epithets and images extend the circumstances of war into terrible brutality. But he also explains how we can move beyond these dehumanizing thoughts and seek out the humanity of others.

Psychologists Robert Lifton and Steven Kull explain how war and artificial enemies provide people with the moral and mental certainties they crave, giving them a sense of purpose in a sometimes-ambiguous world. Mythologist Joseph Campbell, providing a note of hope, suggests that underneath the mask of the enemy we ultimately recognize ourselves. This, Campbell further contends, may be the origin of compassion, brotherhood and altruism, in other words the inverse of war.

California Newsreel is proud to re-release this important film for the first time on DVD with special commentary by Bill Jersey and Sam Keen. Particularly relevant is a complimentary supplement (available only on DVD to those purchasing an institutional version), illuminating complexities in the media and military worlds of today’s conflicts in the Middle East. Also available on videocassette, this is a film whose urgent message needs to be heard now more than ever.

California Newsreel Faces of the Enemy site

Sam Keen’s Web Site
Bill Jersey’s Filmography
Films by Jeffrey Friedman

 

“What a man is Sam Keen! His documentary is uncannily timely, reminding
us that enemy making is taking place on both sides of the al-Qaeda –
Bush conflict. It is particularly striking how similar the situation is
to that of the VietNam war, or even WWII.”

  • Daniel Ellsberg The Pentagon Papers