Tag Archives | Zero Dark Thirty

Official Leaks: “These Senior People Do Whatever They Want”

When asked whether he would have supported working with the producers of Zero Dark Thirty, Department of Defense’s Director of Entertainment Media said he would not have recommended working with screenwriter Mark Boal and director Katherine Bigelow, because he was not happy with the way their movie Hurt Locker had presented the military. But he was not given a choice. “These senior people do whatever they want,” the Director told DOD’s Inspector General, according to a draft of the IG’s report on the leaks of classified information to Boal and Bigelow.

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The Project on Government Oversight released the draft this week.

The Director’s comments are all the more telling given how much more centrally this draft of the report — as compared to another POGO obtained and released — point to the role of then CIA Director Leon Panetta and his Chief of Staff, Jeremy Bash, in leading the government to cooperate on the movie.

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Cheers for Torture Scenes? ‘Zero Dark Thirty’

WIRED.COM‘s Spencer Ackerman offers a justification for the inclusion of torture scenes in Zero Dark Thirty, a Katherine Bigelow-helmed film about the hunt for Osama Bin Laden:

“It’s a movie, not a documentary,” screenwriter Mark Boal told The New Yorker. “We’re trying to make the point that waterboarding and other harsh tactics were part of the C.I.A. program.” That quote has electrified the internet as a statement of intent to gussy up the importance of torture. But the fact is torture was part of the CIA’s post-9/11 agenda: dispassionate journalists like Mark Bowden presents it as such in his excellent recent book.

Zero Dark Thirty does not present torture as a silver bullet that led to bin Laden; it presents torture as the ignorant alternative to that silver bullet. Were a documentarian making the film, there would surely be less torture in the movie: CNN’s Peter Bergen considered an early cut of those scenes overwrought in their gruesomeness and reminds that senators who have investigated the CIA torture program reject the idea that torture led to bin Laden.

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Vote Looming, National Geographic to Exhibit Dubious, Politicized bin Laden Raid Narrative

The trailer for an upcoming film on the U.S. raid that killed Osama bin Laden inaccurately represents tactics and techniques, thereby overstating pre-operational uncertainty regarding the terrorist leader's hideout presence. While producing "Seal Team Six: The Raid on Osama bin Laden," which National Geographic plans to air in the 48 hours before Election Day, Kathryn Bigelow consulted with senior White House, Defense Department and Central Intelligence Agency officials.
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Kathryn Bigelow’s ‘Zero Dark Thirty': Another Entry in the Long Tradition of Wartime Propaganda

Here's the official trailer for Zero Dark Thirty (Hilariously kitschy tagline: And Justice for All), Kathryn Bigelow's movie about the United State's  hunt for Osama bin Laden.  The script was written by Mark Boal, with whom Bigelow collaborated on 2008's The Hurt Locker. Both Bigelow and Boal insist that their film is apolitical, but already questions are arising about if two received secret documents on the bin Laden raid from the Obama administration.  They've had no comment, beyond a few muted responses along the usual "We have to protect our sources."
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