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The Tillman Story
#1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-NbZqt8W...r_embedded

After having seen countless fictional and documentary movies about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan since 9/11—some good (The Men who Stare at Goats, The Ground Truth) and some not good at all (Redacted, No End in Sight)—there is one that soars above all the rest: a documentary called The Tillman Story that incorporates the kind of investigative journalism associated with the genre as well as the searing drama that fiction delivers.
I suppose that most people are familiar with the bare bones narrative of Pat Tillman, a professional football player earning millions who enlisted in the army along with his younger brother in the months following 9/11. On April 22, 2004, when he was on patrol in Afghanistan, he was killed by “friendly fire”, a euphemism that the film eschews in favor of the more accurate fratricide. But this was not the story that the Pentagon released to the media. They said that he died in combat even though they knew the truth. He became a convenient propaganda tool for a “war on terror” that was starting to unravel.
While Pat Tillman was obviously gung-ho when he joined, he had pretty much become disillusioned with the war long before he was killed. We learn that when he was in Iraq, just over a year before he was killed in Afghanistan, he was part of a squad providing tactical support for the “rescue” of Jessica Lynch from a Baghdad hospital supposedly swarming with insurgents, where she was being treated for wounds suffered during combat with the same enemy. Little did he suspect that he would be exploited by the propaganda machine himself one day. The Pentagon reported that she emptied her gun during a terrible firefight when in reality her M-16 had jammed before she took a single shot. Furthermore, when she was in the hospital, she was in no danger since there were no insurgents there at all. The high command in Baghdad staged a film shoot of her being “rescued” from a non-existent enemy.
Tillman not only took all this in with apparent disgust. He had also made up his mind that the occupation of Iraq was unjust. He was reading Chomsky around this time and thinking things through. Whatever he was, he was not the gung-ho yahoo that Chuck Norris and Sylvester Stallone played in their movies.
Finding out about the real Pat Tillman is, as the title of the movie implies, one of its creator’s main aims. Through interviews with his family and the men who fought alongside him, we discover that he was an exceedingly complex and interesting figure. To begin with, he was an outspoken atheist as were apparently the members of his family.
During one of the most poignant moments of the film that brought tears to my eyes, his younger brother Richard tells the attendees at Pat’s memorial meeting to forget about his brother being with god because he didn’t believe that bullshit. He was dead and in the ground—that was all.
By this time, the family had already begun their fight to get out the word on how he died. The army did everything it could to make their task more difficult. For example, they supplied an over 3000-page file on his death which amounted to a case of information overload. Someone without a military background would be hard put to make sense of a lot of the technical detail and the jargon, especially when many of the names and places were blacked out for “security” purposes. But unless the Tillmans could get in touch with the people who were named in the files, they would be at a loss.
Fortunately, Stan Goff who had served in the Army Rangers just like Pat Tillman was able to assist them. He knew the army bureaucracy inside and out and helped them develop a coherent narrative out of the massive file. Stan is interviewed throughout the film and is a key element of its success on political and artistic terms. Some day an enterprising film maker will do something on Stan Goff himself, who joined the military with the same kind of enthusiasm as Pat Tillman but became an opponent of militarism and imperialism through his exposure to Third World realities, especially when on a detail in Haiti. Stan is a latter day Smedley Butler, the highly decorated Marine general who said in 1933:
I spent thirty-three years and four months in active military service as a member of this country’s most agile military force, the Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from Second Lieutenant to Major-General. And during that period, I spent most of my time being a high class muscle-man for Big Business, for Wall Street and for the Bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism.
Nobody knows if Pat Tillman would have become an open opponent of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, although there is plenty of evidence that he might have. He comes across as someone who would not budge an inch on his principles, moving him at one point to give up millions as a professional football player to become a grunt in Afghanistan. One can easily see him defying the military-football-Fox News consensus and giving speeches laced with quotes from Noam Chomsky.
But the intention of the film makers is not to speculate on what would have become of him, but to tell the story of a certain kind of American who believes in the sort of things you are taught in a high school civics class. As such, he will remind you very much of another victim of senseless wars, Ron Kovic, the paraplegic Vietnam veteran and author of Born on the Fourth of July.
The Tillman Story and Born on the Fourth of July are similar tales in many ways. They describe epic struggles to challenge the mythology of the war-making machinery. Ron Kovic survived long enough to take part in some of the most momentous antiwar demonstrations, while Pat Tillman’s family conducted a struggle against lies and deceit in their own way. Their tale is not so much one of repudiating war, but repudiating the cynical and degraded propaganda machine that makes such wars possible.
In the climax of the film, we see the Tillmans at a Congressional hearing with a bunch of generals and Donald Rumsfeld secreting a snail’s trail of evasions and “I can’t recall’s”. All in all, you will be reminded of the testimony of Goldman Sachs executives and BP’s Tony Hayward. The movie is a stunning reminder that during the awful and dangerous times of capitalism in its dotage, the rulers will be forced to lie and lie and lie once again. In such circumstances, the truth will be a stick of dynamite against a dying system. The Tillman Story will be an especially explosive part of this arsenal for change.
The film opens on a limited distribution basis on August 20th. It is not to be missed.
http://louisproyect.wordpress.com/2010/0...man-story/
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
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#2
Quote:But the intention of the film makers is not to speculate on what would have become of him, but to tell the story of a certain kind of American who believes in the sort of things you are taught in a high school civics class. As such, he will remind you very much of another victim of senseless wars, Ron Kovic, the paraplegic Vietnam veteran and author of Born on the Fourth of July.

Just an interesting sideline.In reading the thick as a brick "Home To War" by author Gerald Nicosia about the history of the Vietnam veterans movement.Nicosia states that Ron Kovic had eventually commited suicide in France.I believed that until just a few years ago when I again heard of Kovic participating in anti war rallies(A great book,but obviously with some errors).Ron Kovic is an amazing character of incredible strength and fortitude.Of course,Kovic is friendly with Oliver Stone who directed "Born on the Fourth of July".I'll just post up his Wiki page below,you'll see what I mean.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ron_Kovic


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"You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
Buckminster Fuller
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#3
As Bud Fensterwald taught us, every intel op has at least two objectives.

The Tilman hit's objectives:

1. Silence a powerful anti-war voice that was about to spill some very big beans.

2. Falsify EVERYTHING about the Target and his murder to create a martyr for the very cause the Target wanted to destroy.

Die Fahne hoch! Die Reihen fest geschlossen!
SA marschiert mit ruhig, festem Schritt.
Kam'raden, die Rotfront und Reaktion erschossen,
Marschier'n im Geist in unser'n Reihen mit.

Die Straße frei den braunen Batallionen.
Die Straße frei dem Sturmabteilungsmann!
Es schau'n aufs Hakenkreuz voll Hoffnung schon Millionen.
Der Tag für Freiheit und für Brot bricht an!

Zum letzten Mal wird schon Appell geblasen!
Zum Kampfe steh'n wir alle schon bereit!
Bald flattern Hitlerfahnen über alle Straßen.
Die Knechtschaft dauert nur mehr kurze Zeit!

Die Fahne hoch! Die Reihen fest geschlossen!
SA marschiert mit ruhig-festem Schritt.
Kameraden, die Rotfront und Reaktion erschossen,
Marschieren im Geist in unseren Reihen mit.
Reply
#4
Quote:Die Fahne hoch! Die Reihen fest geschlossen!
SA marschiert mit ruhig, festem Schritt.
Kam'raden, die Rotfront und Reaktion erschossen,
Marschier'n im Geist in unser'n Reihen mit.

Die Straße frei den braunen Batallionen.
Die Straße frei dem Sturmabteilungsmann!
Es schau'n aufs Hakenkreuz voll Hoffnung schon Millionen.
Der Tag für Freiheit und für Brot bricht an!

Zum letzten Mal wird schon Appell geblasen!
Zum Kampfe steh'n wir alle schon bereit!
Bald flattern Hitlerfahnen über alle Straßen.
Die Knechtschaft dauert nur mehr kurze Zeit!

Die Fahne hoch! Die Reihen fest geschlossen!
SA marschiert mit ruhig-festem Schritt.
Kameraden, die Rotfront und Reaktion erschossen,
Marschieren im Geist in unseren Reihen mit.

OK,we need a translation here! :beerglass:
"You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
Buckminster Fuller
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#5
Magda Hassan Wrote:...Stan is a latter day Smedley Butler, the highly decorated Marine general who said in 1933:
I spent thirty-three years and four months in active military service as a member of this country’s most agile military force, the Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from Second Lieutenant to Major-General. And during that period, I spent most of my time being a high class muscle-man for Big Business, for Wall Street and for the Bankers. In short, I was a racketeer, a gangster for capitalism.
...
In the climax of the film, we see the Tillmans at a Congressional hearing with a bunch of generals and Donald Rumsfeld secreting a snail’s trail of evasions and “I can’t recall’s”. All in all, you will be reminded of the testimony of Goldman Sachs executives and BP’s Tony Hayward. The movie is a stunning reminder that during the awful and dangerous times of capitalism in its dotage, the rulers will be forced to lie and lie and lie once again. In such circumstances, the truth will be a stick of dynamite against a dying system. The Tillman Story will be an especially explosive part of this arsenal for change.
...

If the Tillman documentary is as good as this reviewer then it's really something special. I hope Pat Tillman, along with Kevin Tillman and their family, finally have a worthy forum.
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#6
Keith Millea Wrote:
Quote:Die Fahne hoch! Die Reihen fest geschlossen!
SA marschiert mit ruhig, festem Schritt.
Kam'raden, die Rotfront und Reaktion erschossen,
Marschier'n im Geist in unser'n Reihen mit.

Die Straße frei den braunen Batallionen.
Die Straße frei dem Sturmabteilungsmann!
Es schau'n aufs Hakenkreuz voll Hoffnung schon Millionen.
Der Tag für Freiheit und für Brot bricht an!

Zum letzten Mal wird schon Appell geblasen!
Zum Kampfe steh'n wir alle schon bereit!
Bald flattern Hitlerfahnen über alle Straßen.
Die Knechtschaft dauert nur mehr kurze Zeit!

Die Fahne hoch! Die Reihen fest geschlossen!
SA marschiert mit ruhig-festem Schritt.
Kameraden, die Rotfront und Reaktion erschossen,
Marschieren im Geist in unseren Reihen mit.
OK,we need a translation here! :beerglass:
Here you go Keith!
The flag high! The ranks tightly closed! SA march with calm, firm steps. Comrades shot by the Red Front and reactionaries March in spirit in our ranks. Clear the streets for the brown battalions, Clear the streets for the stormtroopers! Already millions look with hope to the swastika The day of freedom and bread is dawning! Roll call has sounded for the last time We are all already prepared for the fight! Soon Hitler's flag will fly over all streets. Our servitude will soon end! The flag high! The ranks tightly closed! SA marches with a calm, firm pace. Comrades shot by the Red Front and reactionaries March in spirit in our ranks.
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.
Reply
#7
Thanks Magda! Confused:
"You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
Buckminster Fuller
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#8
Not perfect but near enough

With flags flying and their lines tightly closed
The SA marches with quiet solid steps
The red front and any reaction having been quelled
The spirit of our friends march with us

Make way for the brown battalions
Make way for the attack troops
Under the flag millions are watching
Hoping for freedom and no more hunger

The roll call trumpets will be blown for the last time
We are all standing firm and ready to fight
Soon the flags of Hitler will be flying above our streets
And serfdom will be abolished
Reply
#9
Snap

two replies. I think stormtrooper is definitely a better translation :rock:
Reply
#10
Actually, I think your translation is altogether better
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