Indeed. As The Washington Post’s review noted of the movie, produced and co-written by reporter Jeremy Scahill of the Nation: “The narrative begins in an Afghan village near the city of Gardez, with Scahill investigating a 2010 raid by U.S. forces that left several civilians, including two pregnant women, dead. Although the U.S. military initially denied involvement, it eventually admitted to its role and apologized for the deaths with the gift of a sheep to the villagers, who refer to the bearded commandos who stormed their home as “American Taliban.” The film doesn’t change gears after that.
Psaki said she would check out the report.
Lee followed up Wednesday, noting that, of course, “one could argue that it is laudable that the embassy would want to, you know, promote divergent views of things.”
“Well, as always, context is important,” Psaki said, adding that the department’s public diplomacy and outreach programs worldwide “promote independent films, promote Hollywood films. That’s something we’re doing here.” The Canberra film festival “has dozens of movies, including 16 U.S. films,” and the department is “providing some funding for that,” she said, and the embassy is offering “a range of tickets for . . . more than a half-dozen movies.”
“We believe in freedom of speech,” she said. “We’re not judging or advocating or endorsing any of the movies, but we are just simply encouraging people to participate in the film festival.”
Besides, it’s not as if they are giving away small American flags for people to burn after the movie.
Fredo’s fabulous new life
Loop Favorite and former attorney general Alberto “Fredo” Gonzales is on a roll these days. When last we checked in on him a couple years ago, there was good news. Gonzales had had a tough time signing on with a law firm because of his controversial Bush administration actions, things like that race to George Washington University Hospital to get an ailing attorney general, John Ashcroft, to approve a highly questionable domestic surveillance program; the controversial firing of some U.S. attorneys; his approval of “enhanced interrogation techniques.” But he landed a job at a Nashville law firm, Waller Lansden. It wasn’t a partnership, only an “of counsel” gig, but it was a start.
The new firm describes him thusly on its Web site: “Whether a client has discovered an issue that requires strategic crisis management assistance, or has received a subpoena or search warrant from a government agency, Judge Gonzales is uniquely prepared to deliver sound guidance and representation.”