Are Navy SEALs Racist
Big debate about a role model for US war films: Was the American Sniper a racist?
Washington - New vortex around America's deadliest sniper Chris Kyle († 38). New dispute between one of the largest TV stations in the USA and the country's military.
More than 20 former US generals and admirals have asked the long-established television station NBC to apologize publicly to the Navy Seal, which officially killed 160 "enemies" in Iraq between 2004 and 2009 (plus 75 unconfirmed "kills").
Reason: Middle East correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin described the Texas rodeo cowboy as a racist in an interview on January 29 on the “Morning Joe” show on MSNBC (NBC's counterpart to CNN).
"Some people here have told me things that point to Kyle's racist tendencies towards Iraqis and Muslims when he went on his, you know, killer excursions in Iraq," Mohyeldin said in front of an audience of millions about the man, who voluntarily went to war four times after the attack on September 11, 2001 and whose story in Clint Eastwood's film "American Sniper" has been conquering the cinemas for weeks.
The outrage was enormous. Many Americans interpreted the comment as follows: Chris Kyle's motive was not patriotism and preventing new terrorist attacks. Rather, he saw the war as a kind of opportunity to kill Muslims.
But that's not all: The host of the show, Joe Scarborough, compared the war hero, who is called "The Legend" by the Navy Seals, with Santa Claus. "When Ayman comes back from Iraq, he'll probably kick Santa Claus in the butt too."
Military writes letter of anger to NBC's parent company
Republicans, veterans, and active Navy Seals found this far from comical. And so, 60 military officers (including influential generals and admirals) wrote a letter to NBC's powerful parent company, Comcast (largest media company in the world). "Mohyeldin's statements are an inexcusable slap in the face of Chris Kyle's widow and all those who serve our country and risk their lives for our freedom," the letter reads.
And further: "Chris Kyle is a hero. Shareholders, advertisers and viewers have the right to know whether NBC News allows its reporters to insult our troops like this? "
For the TV station, it is the second conflict with the US military in a few days. Brian Williams (55), one of the most famous faces on US television, caused a scandal. The news presenter had repeatedly claimed after a tour of Iraq as an "embedded" reporter that he had sat in a helicopter in 2003 that had been shot down.
But on January 29, the day Kyle was labeled a racist, several soldiers inside the helicopter revealed, “Williams is lying. He was in a completely different helicopter and was never in danger. ”Instead of telling a true story about the troops, he would have preferred to focus on himself.
The moderator with the John Wayne voice and the original American face has now been suspended for six months. Meanwhile, the country is debating whether he will ever be credible again. A difficult situation for the station founded in 1946. Williams face belongs to NBC like Coca Cola belongs to America.
Feature film divides USA
“American Sniper (directed by Clint Eastwood, starring: Bradley Cooper and Siena Miller) continues to polarize America. For some it is a successful portrayal of the trauma that so many US troops suffered in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. For the others, it's a superficial propaganda film. For some, Chris Kyle is a hero who has saved the lives of countless comrades. For others, he's a trigger-happy "redneck" who fired at people from hiding without any scruples (director Michael Moore).
Todd Green, professor of religion at Luther College in Iowa, wrote about the six Academy Award nominee film: “Almost all Iraqi men, women and children are portrayed as bloodthirsty and bitter. We see Muslims as Kyle seemed to see them: as wild demons who do not deserve our pity and who have no humanity. "
The religion expert also attacked director Clint Eastwood: “He did not portray Kyle impartially. Rather, he wants the audience to admire his courage and willingness to make sacrifices for his country. But the film gives us little opportunity to see the human side of the Iraqis. So Eastwood is not neutral, but tells us: The American Sniper was a hero, not a racist. But was that really him? "
The Seals who ran through the streets of Baghdad while "The Legend" watched over them from their hiding place did not ask this question. They were glad he was there.
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