Old war New war

Doctored still of Stirling Hayden from a Korean war flick with Javelin missiles from the news streams

I watch old movies. Now and then old war movies. This to escape, for a while, the war news that isn’t a movie. Its sort of real, surreal anyway. The news I mean. But the movies are too. The thing about the movies is that they are propaganda. The war was just, the USA wore the white hat, stood for freedom, etc. But objectively the country acted for perceived self interest. As I type this screed I have the fifty inch screen set as window on Kyiv and I watch for flashes in the sky. Its night their. They are eight hours ahead of us here in the eastern USA. The propaganda movies about wars of the past are so different than watching one unfold in front of you. That is something new. But the values cast in these two different views of war stand in such contrast. The raw history and the sculpted heroic history. The one where the outcome is known at the beginning. Then there is the other, where not knowing gives that pit of the stomach top of the rollercoaster feeling. I am sure one of these Tom Clancy types wrote the script for this. I’m just an extra in the production. The cameras are everywhere. I play victim #3459588847498495847 and there are no lines to learn….we just improvise to the end. That will be when God almighty raises his hand and says, “cut”

The “truth” is seldom reality. Objective reality, the kind that is impossible for any human, always differs from any individual reality. And each of us has our take on what is truth and what is real.

The cultural history of the USA over the past half century has landed us where we stand today. A lot of individuals in the United States who were forming “their” reality in the late 60’s and early 70’s distrust everything the government says. Their own government. Another government, the one in Moscow for example, says the opposite of what Washington says….so, logically, its true. Binary is popular. It is either A or B, good or bad, right or wrong. But sadly, most of objective reality isn’t binary, even in simple human perception. Tucker Carlson isn’t a shill for Putin, he’s a shill for Fox Network and for himself. Did he ever say, “I would sell my soul to be a news “personality” I doubt it. These old parables are based on good and evil in binary terms too. No, Tucker and Fox saw a wind blowing in the country and set their sails to catch it. A famous Communist once said, “The capitalist will sell you the rope you hang him with” Fox doesn’t loose money promoting sympathy for Putin or his stooge Donald. Put Donald Trump on camera every night. That might be entertaining, seeing him try to read from a teleprompter. RT, Russia Today, the propaganda channel, now largely shut down, has a slogan…..”Question everything” sounds like Socrates doesn’t it. Nothing pro Russia there. No, its like acid…it dissolves structure. When you’ve been cleaned of your beliefs our newly re-installed stooge and his helpers will tell you what to believe.

Moral ambiguity. That is a bottomless pit for people. Anything short of angels and God and his/her staff will not be able to see the moral compass – it’s needle swings wildly when human societies try to steer by it. Morality is the justification for the Godly side killing the un Godly. Hollywood took the cause of moral clarity as their own in all the wars the USA has fought. Maybe that’s why seeing war as a raw feed on modern media is so weird.

My feeling is that being dominated by the Kremlin isn’t healthy for anybody…not the Ukrainians, not Europe, not even the Russian people themselves. But the Kremlin is in the same business Hollywood has been in. Creating propaganda to remove any ambiguity in the cause. They can go to the extreme and ban words, like war, or invasion. George Orwell didn’t invent the “memory hole” on his own. He was inspired by Russian Communism and its use of language to shape a reality. Victory to Ukraine!

Published by glensketch

Retired from electronics industry. Ex USN ex USAF ex expat in Ecuador.

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