Our Glorious Torturers: Zero Dark Thirty’s Fabrications

Posted: December 11, 2012 in -
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Glenn Greenwald is again on the case. Bigelow’s PRO TORTURE agenda is exposed.

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“What this film does, then, is uncritically present as fact the highly self-serving, and factually false, claims by the CIA that its torture techniques were crucial in finding bin Laden. Put another way, it propagandizes the public to favorably view clear war crimes by the US government, based on pure falsehoods.”

“What makes this so remarkable is that, by most accounts, the film glorifies torture by claiming — falsely — that waterboarding and other forms of coercive interrogation tactics were crucial, even indispensable in finding bin Laden.”

Quoting the NY Times Frank Bruni:

“[I]t’s hard not to focus on them, because the first extended sequence in the movie shows a detainee being strung up by his wrists, sexually humiliated, deprived of sleep, made to feel as if he’s drowning and shoved into a box smaller than a coffin.

“The torture sequence immediately follows a bone-chilling, audio-only prologue of the voices of terrified Americans trapped in the towering inferno of the World Trade Center. It’s set up as payback.

“And by the movie’s account, it produces information vital to the pursuit of the world’s most wanted man. No waterboarding, no Bin Laden: that’s what “Zero Dark Thirty” appears to suggest.”

Greenwald:

“If Bigelow had merely depicted episodes that actually happened, then her defense that she is not judging and has no responsibility to do so would be more debatable. But the fact that she’s presenting lies as fact on an issue as vital as these war crimes, all while patting herself on the back for her “journalistic approach” to the topic, makes the behavior indefensible, even reprehensible. Is it really possible to say: this is a great film despite the fact that it glorifies torture using patent falsehoods?

More in The Guardian.

UPDATE:

Glenn Greenwald follows up with a complete analysis of the film’s depiction of torture and the reactions around the world:

Zero Dark Thirty and the utility and glory of torture

Jane Mayer, who wrote the book on the torture fiasco at CIA, has now reviewd the film:

“To begin with, despite Boal’s contentions, “Zero Dark Thirty” does not capture the complexity of the debate about America’s brutal detention program. It doesn’t include a single scene in which torture is questioned, even though the Bush years were racked by internal strife over just that issue—again, not just among human-rights and civil-liberties lawyers, but inside the F.B.I., the military, the Justice Department, and the C.I.A. itself, which eventually abandoned waterboarding because it feared, correctly, that the act constituted a war crime. None of this ethical drama seems to interest Bigelow.” More

 

Comments
  1. Editor says:

    Noam Chomsky on the killing of Osama bin Laden:

    “The question of due process actually did arise, since the US does have a constitution and it says that no person shall be deprived of their rights without due process of law – again, this goes back to 13th Century England – so the question arose, “What about due process?” The Obama Justice Department’s Attorney General, Eric Holder, explained that there was due process in these cases because they are discussed first at the Executive Branch. That’s not even a bad joke! The British kings from the 13th Century would have applauded. “Sure, if we talk about it, that’s due process.” And that, again, passed without controversy.

    In fact, we might ask the same question about the murder of Osama Bin Laden. Notice I use the term “murder”. When heavily armed elite troops capture a suspect, unarmed and defenseless, accompanied by his wives, and then shoot him, kill him, and dump his body into the ocean without an autopsy, that’s shear assassination. Also notice that I said “suspect”. The reason is because of another principle of law, that also goes back to the 13th Century – that a man is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Before that, he’s a suspect. In the case of Osama Bin Laden, the United States had never formally charged him with 9/11 and part of the reason was that they didn’t know that he was responsible. In fact, eight months after 9/11 and after the most intensive inquiry in history, the FBI explained that it suspected that the 9/11 plot was hatched in Afghanistan, (didn’t mention Bin Laden) and was implemented in the United Arab Emirates, Germany, and of course the United States. That’s eight months after the attack and there’s nothing substantive that they’ve learned since then that does more than increase the suspicion. My own assumption is that the suspicion is almost certainly correct, but there’s a big difference between having a very confident belief and showing someone to be guilty. And even if he’s guilty, he was supposed to be apprehended and brought before a court. That’s British and American law going back eight centuries. He’s not supposed to be murdered and have his body dumped without an autopsy, but support for this is very nearly universal. Actually, I wrote one of the few critical articles on it and my article was bitterly condemned by commentators across the spectrum, including the Left, because the assassination was so obviously just, since we suspected him of committing a crime against us. And that tells you something about the significant, I would say, “moral degeneration” running throughout the whole intellectual class. And yes, Obama has continued this and in some respects extended it, but it hardly comes as a surprise.”

    Interview of Noam Chomsky by ERIC BAILEY

  2. […] Our Glorious Torturers: Zero D… on The Political Film Blog […]

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