Pulling The Hollywood Leeches Off Your Brain In The Disinfo Jungle, More on Herzog, Dieter, and Leni

As we are preparing to present our next media deconstruction and analysis event (XLT ^s. MDC at Station 40 2morrow night – read below) the experience of seeing Herzog’s Rescue Dawn remains a fresh and open wound on the psyche. And we just don’t have the time to fully flesh out all the dizzying falseness this film foments, but fortunately John Pilger has investigated the Vietnam delusions so thoroughly, it was a perfect coincidence to hear him on Democracy Now this morning. This was a special KPFA fundraiser that is not in their daily archives, but anyway you can catch the brilliant speech they played, which he gave in Chicago in June. Re-posted Here.


Pilger has both a new book and a new film out, War on Democracy, which perhaps we can play an excerpt or a trailer from in our program tomorrow.

Reading from his own site both about Vietnam and Hollywood, he further unveils what is so far Off with, lets call them the Hollywood Leni’s, after Leni Riefenstahl, the infamous propaganda artiste who became a Third Reich star and who until her death remained in a perfectly demented artworld bubble of self-served denial and oblivion as to what exactly she had, with pride and primed ego, participated.

In a more current light, Pilger writes about the nearly laughable accounts ( if it were not so nauseating) of Hollywood consistently portraying Vietnam as a purely American tragedy, America as the victim, ( Deer Hunter, Platoon, Rambo, etc etc. ) without ever examining the horrors of its native inhabitants, millions of whom were murdered, and the survivors who still live under one of the empire’s bleakest shadows.

Reading his account of Vietnam today (1995), for example exploring the life of Thien Thi Tao, who spent most of her youth in torture prisons of South Vietnamese secret police, a terror organization, who you guessed it, were trained and run by the CIA, your fury will be fueled to think that while having watched Rescue Dawn your sympathies were expertly manipulated to feel the horror of one Little Dieter who willingly and ambitiously took up the profession to napalm civilian villages in Indochina. But all those problematic perspectives will be so smoothly ignored. Rather Herzog begins his film with some crock of shit preface, that Dieter and many other pilots did not know what they were getting into as the war was just beginning. But his mission into Laos was 1966, 2 years after the Gulf of Tonkin, 2 years into an insidious bombing campaign. Well surely there’s both clueless military people and misled military people, but even if one believes an educated navy pilot hasn’t even a glimpse of understanding what it means to drop napalm on villages, the true name for the job in Laos is WAR CRIME. But in Herzog’s version we are led to thinking Little Dieter remained innocent, that he was only trying to fulfill his dreams of flying. And not only will it so lightly skip over this inescapable moral reflection, he will deflect our entire focus to the misery of the invaders.

There’s so much more here in this contorted tale that just keeps unravelling the complexities of Hollywood and it’s function in the Military Entertainment Complex:

Is Herzog “suffering” from some sort of Stockholm Syndrome in Beverly Hills?

Would actor Christian Bale eat a bowl full of maggots for a story about homelessness in Los Angeles?

The NPR radio interview with Herzog, National Pentagon Radio ( as Norman Solomon coined it) meets the new Art Frankenstein recruit !!?

Ah, so many questions remain…

to be cont.

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