Skip to comments.Terrorism, Hollywood-style: Debbie Schlussel whacks Tinsel Town for distorting war
Posted on 12/10/2001 11:44:57 PM PST by JohnHuang2
Get Hollywood out of the "War Against Terrorism."
Recently, high-ranking White House officials, like Karl Rove, and top entertainment execs met to enlist Hollywood's help in efforts to eradicate terrorism and Osama bin Laden.
But, apparently, the real Hollywood decision makers were either there as double agents for terrorists or else fell asleep at the meetings. Their latest output is harmful propaganda in favor of Arab terrorists, not the U.S.
Take David E. Kelley, producer of ABC's "The Practice," and FOX's "Ally McBeal" and "Boston Public." Sunday night's episode of "The Practice" was pure fiction, designed to cast doubt on federal law enforcement's round-up of suspected terrorists. Character Bill Habib is an Arab and 20-year U.S. citizen who is arrested, imprisoned for no reason. He wants to remain imprisoned because he's so loyal to America, he says. His wife and lawyer believe federal authorities have beaten him because he's so patriotic. Hollywood writers can't imagine patriotism without coercion.
Before that, a highly-rated episode of "The West Wing" featured an innocent Arab Muslim White House employee wrongfully profiled as a terrorist. He's such a loyal American, is the message we are inculcated with. We should feel bad for him.
That's Hollywood's rendition of what's happening right now. Now, here's a reality check.
In real life, most suspicious Arabs and Muslims aren't even investigated. A recent plan by Attorney General John Ashcroft to send federal agents to question Arab non-citizens on temporary visas was changed under Arab pressure to an obsequious letter begging them to come to an interview and volunteer information on terrorists. It netted the expected result almost zero compliance. Useless.
Most Arabs and Muslims rounded up and imprisoned recently even if not allied with the Sept. 11 attackers have violated U.S. law in a serious way that indicates they should not be here. Some are here illegally, overstaying visas for years. Others, like Mazen Al-Najjar, a mid-level Islamic Jihad terrorist imprisoned in Florida, got here through paid sham marriages. They should have left long ago, but are reaping rewards of U.S. citizenship they don't have. Some are imprisoned on charges of carrying multiple phony IDs and passports. Terrorists never do that, right? Not on "The Practice," anyway.
Worse, many others are not only non-citizens, but have illegally registered to vote, a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison. The penalty's serious because it's a common practice by terrorists who are not U.S. citizens. Thanks to lenient Clinton voter-registration laws, they easily get and use voter ID cards (coupled with driver's licenses) as acceptable proof of U.S. citizenship in countries like Canada and Caribbean island nations from which they plan their terrorist operations, not subject to the tougher scrutiny of U.S. law enforcement intelligence. A few Arabs and Muslims are in prison because they reported phony hate crimes against themselves, fabricating evidence.
In real life, many Arabs and Muslims with far worse violations and evidence against them are roaming free. Unlike other criminals, they're handled with kid-gloves. According to USA Today, a recent Syracuse University study showed that in the last five years 68 percent of 10,000 terrorism crimes recommended for prosecution by the FBI and federal law enforcement were never tried, the charges were dropped by prosecutors and suspects were let go. That's more than double the 32 percent of other types of crimes referred by the FBI that went unprosecuted. Funny, I didn't see that episode of "The Practice."
One such unprosecuted terrorist is Al Najjar's brother-in-law, Dr. Sami Al-Arian, Islamic Jihad's head honcho in the U.S., who doubles as a University of South Florida professor. He's on indefinite paid leave, courtesy of taxpayers, despite overwhelming evidence he laundered money for terrorists, including the 1993 World Trade Center bombers, and knowingly brought terrorists into the U.S. by lying on visa forms. But you won't see an episode of "The Practice" or "The West Wing" about Al-Arian. That wouldn't be politically correct.
In the rare instance when Hollywood has produced even a hint of the truth that some Arabs and Muslims can be and, in fact, are terrorists self-anointed Arab Muslim civil-rights groups protest it as hate speech. When the 1998 movie, "The Siege," had the gall to portray Arab Muslims as terrorists who blow up buildings and buses of people in N.Y. (and also portrayed patriotic Arab-American FBI agents), these groups like the Council for American-Islamic Relations and the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee protested, claiming this never happens in real-life. Ditto for "The Rules of Engagement." When Arnold Schwarzenegger filmed a movie involving Arab Muslim terrorists, CAIR protested, and the villains were changed to Hispanic narco-terrorists. CAIR didn't protest the Hispanic stereotype.
Contrary to "The Practice's" portrayal, there's absolutely no evidence that any imprisoned Arabs have been beaten, or that even a hair on their heads has been touched. That's why many, like Zaccarias Moussaoui who wanted to learn how to steer planes but not how to take-off or land, continue their silence despite the intense federal investigation. In contrast, in Arab countries about which we've seen absolutely no portrayals on "The Practice" or "The West Wing" Moussaoui would've been tortured and made to talk long ago. Then, he'd be killed in one of many grotesque ways.
As for "The West Wing" episode, it was based on a real White House official, sort of. Unlike on "The West Wing," it appears that the real-life White House employee, a Muslim, is the son of a San Diego-based Muslim cleric who used his mosque to raise money for bin Laden's deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri and his terrorist operations. Not only are White House Muslims not profiled as terrorists, real Arab Muslim terrorists like Al-Arian are invited as guests of President Bush. Where's that "West Wing" episode?
You won't see that show, either. In fact, despite White House-Hollywood confabs, every recent fictional television show about the war on terrorism focuses not on our moral high ground, but on our wickedness vs. innocent, wrongfully profiled Arabs and Muslims. What's next Regis hosting the "Who Wants to Be A Millionaire" wrongly-profiled Arab-American edition?
With entertainment like that, who needs the Arab terrorists' propaganda? Hollywood has never been in touch with reality. Even with terrorism, some things never change.
There has been so much of an outcry about picking on the Muslims that they are untouchable even today after Sept 11...
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.