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American War Cinema and Media since Vietnam: Politics, by Patricia Keeton

By Patricia Keeton

No different cinematic style extra sharply illustrates the contradictions of yank society - notions approximately social classification, politics, and socio-economic ideology - than the warfare movie. This e-book examines the most recent cycle of battle movies to bare how they mediate and negotiate the complexities of struggle, type, and a military-political project principally long past undesirable.

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What should have been a good war revisited becomes in each movie a conflicted, dark, and tortured event that plays havoc with the protagonists. If a moral exists it may be this: any war of discretion, especially wars that are so obviously asymmetrical, militarily one-sided in the extreme, cannot realistically be sanitized or made to look heroic. To the credit of these films, their directors and writers, no major studio war about the Persian Gulf War made it look more appealing than it actually was.

Put the guns into our hands and we will use them. Give us the slogans and we will turn them into realities. Sing the battle hymns and we will take them up where you left off. Not one not ten not ten thousand not a million not ten millions not a hundred millions but a billion two billions of us all the people of the world we will have the slogans and we will have the hymns and we will have the guns and we will use them and we will live. . You plan the wars you masters of men plan the wars and point the way and we will point the gun (241–243).

However, as a result of the loss of the Vietnam War and its accompanying “Vietnam Syndrome,” US leaders were limited to short-term tactical wars— brief land assaults supported with aerial bombing—to pursue a long-range agenda. This agenda is contained in the National Security Strategy Statement (NSSS) released by the Bush administration on September 20, 2002. The articulation of a new imperial timetable originated in the Project for the New American Century (PNAC), a neoconservative think tank established in 1972 by William Kristol and Robert Kagan, consisting of the most influential of the Bush coterie: Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, James Woolsey (CIA director from 1993 to 1995 under Clinton), Paul Wolfowitz (deputy secretary of defense and later president of the World Bank), Richard Perle (assistant secretary of defense under Reagan), Jeb Bush, Richard Armitage (deputy secretary of state under Bush, 2001 to 2005), Senator John McCain, and some Republican-Reagan-era hawks.

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