63: Iraq War CultureUp one level
Iraq War Culture, April 2003
- Introduction: Iraq War Culture
The US political landscape of the Iraq War is characterized by massive cutbacks in social expenditures, together with tax structures that underwrite capital accumulation by a narrow alliance of social allies.
- Collective Suicide?
Boaventura de Sousa Santos
A new, cosmopolitan humanism can be built above and beyond Western illuminist abstractions, a humanism of real people based on the concrete resistance to the actual human suffering imposed by the real axis of evil: neoliberalism plus war.
- When the Enemy Is Me
I cannot say it is easy to be a pro-peace American living in New Zealand right now. Then again, I cannot say that it is easy to be anyone with any beliefs living anywhere on the planet right now.
- Defending the Homeland War: A View from Croatia
As some Croats block the roads to protest the judging of their soldiers in Gospic and as some Croats accept the verdict as a necessary step in bringing their country into line with modern states, few, if any, can find it acceptable that the Americans do not have to submit to international scrutiny.
- A Tale of Two (or Three) Marches
In both its spontaneity and root cause, this walk in the empty streets hearkened back to another unplanned migration uptown -- the long silent trek of thousands and thousands of New Yorkers heading away from lower Manhattan on 9/11/01.
- Freedom of Speech...Just Watch What You Say
Niaz Kasravi, A. Rafik Mohamed
Free speech gets turned completely on its head, from something that most Americans believe to be a protection of their right to criticize government and otherwise act freely in the United States, to how it actually plays itself out in contemporary politics, with the vast majority of American voices remaining marginalized and by silencing in the interest of corporate free speech those few voices of dissent that slip through the cracks.
- Saying Something: Academia's Normalization of Crisis
Michelle Renee Matisons
For those who teach on the college level, the war on terrorism provides a challenge to the very principles of academic freedom. There are many diverse free speech related problems that, in many ways, depend on individual campus cultures.
- The Empire's War on Iraq
Max Fraad-Wolff, Rick Wolff
Pax Americana's push forward is, at best, an immensely costly and extremely risky venture in empire-building. The brutal war on Iraq risks a cascading series of destabilizing and violent repercussions.
- Making Starship Troopers
Debra Benita Shaw
In Starship Troopers, elements of frontier mythology are structured into 'a systematized technology of power in order to reproduce and reinscribe the mythos of expansionist culture, both in the fictional spaces of film and text and, concomitantly, in America-at-large which looks to the cultural machine of Hollywood to rehabilitate its cultural ethos'.
- The 'Reality' Video Game of War: Loose Reflections on the Invasion of Hope
I stand in a dumbfounded and overwhelmed state of awe at how the "shock and awe" campaign was announced and hyped with its military-esque sound track, catchy sound-bites, and a general feeling of "hurry back from the break to witness the largest, most exciting bombing campaign ever."
- The War Show
The War Show, it's clear, is all about winning. "Truth on the battlefield" is overrated.
- Social Death and War: US Media Representations of Sacrifice in the Iraq War
The manner in which the Iraq war has been presented by the news is the use of cinematographic techniques to reduce the horror of war to a consumable and entertaining phenomenon. The focus of CNN, MSNBC, ABC or Fox News is on the real and graphic animation of US military technology, the three-dimensional imagery of the battlefields.
- War as a Sporting Event
Watching a simulated war was satisfying, because it gave us a strong sense of American superiority, and that made it easy to support the action. It's always easier, after all, to support a winning team. That's why the Yankees and Braves fill their stadiums year after year.
- "War! Blog! Good Gawd, Y'all! What Are They Good For?"
- Part of the reason war blogs are having such an impact right now is precisely because they are being noticed by the mainstream news media. Some critics of modern journalism will argue that the mainstream has proven itself irrelevant, with the proof lying in those very blogs that are the topic of this discussion.
- Operation Iraqi Freedom: Misdirection in Action
Jo Rittenhouse, Elisabeth Hurst
The mainstream media connect almost every piece of news that we do get to see to the war in Iraq. Even apparently unrelated events, or only partially related events, are told against a backdrop of events in the Persian Gulf. The stories that don't fit this paradigm fade into the background.
- Reflections Toward Visibility
The state of exception is the reduction of humanity to the life that can be killed but not sacrificed. The person stripped of citizenship, held at undisclosed locations, possibly subject to torture, unable to make any claim whatever to human rights (inasmuch as those rights are predicated on the power of a nation-state to recognize them) can be killed or disappeared but nothing more.
- Riddles of Disarmament: Saddam and the Washington Sniper
The mythic relationship that both "terrorists" share with American society is powerful. Saddam was armed as an anti-fundamentalist deterrent with Washington cash reserves, with his technologies for mass destruction a predictable by-product. The main Washington sniper comes from a landscape mushroomed with militia and dilettante gun specialists.
- Marines versus Fedayeen: Interpretive Naming and Constructing the 'Other'
Throughout history the enemy, figured as the ultimate 'other', have been named in derogatory terms, especially in narratives of propaganda. However, contemporary discourses of history and news reporting have positioned themselves as neutral and impartial, transparent lenses through which events and the enemy can be viewed objectively without distortion.
- Collateral Damage
Art-war imagery by issue artist Melissa Usher.
- Affective Tactics: Intensifying a Politics of Perception
tobias c. van Veen
The problematic of affect raises the question of the relation between art and politics that has concerned the Left throughout its history. Is a politicized art not a step toward social realism?