I recently came across a documentary from Russian television on the history of Libya from the rise of Gaddafi to his assassination.
It was a very well-produced and fair minded piece, exploring both pro and anti Gaddafi sentiments from Libyans and from those outside of Libya.
However what was most striking in comparison to agenda driven documentaries from Western media outlets was the lack of censorship. In particular, the producers showed the unedited assassination of Gaddafi for all.
Indeed, the horrifying reality of Gaddafi’s assassination is something which it is very important for the world to see.
Two profound issues are at stake here: First of all, the sugar coating of war crimes and tragedy by the Western media in order to make the war agenda appear soft and detached from the realities of pain and suffering; and secondly, a paradoxical fear and obsession with death which represents just one of many post-modern neuroses of the West.
The Western powers are, to put it frankly, international death merchants. From the war crimes reined down on Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Ukraine, Syria and many other conflicts, to the export of war or the tools of war (think the American and European arms Saudi Arabia is using in the little mentioned war crime against Yemen), war in the West is now big business, with devastating and irrevocable consequences.
Yet the images on CNN and the BBC never show actual death. They only portray the peripheral accoutrements of bloodshed.
Western media will show the planes buzzing; they’ll show stock footage of the ‘evil dictator’ of the day waving his arms; they’ll show a bomb being dropped on a hazy target only for the footage to be abruptly cut off upon explosion; and yes they’ll show ‘brave’ reporters running about in tin hats far from the threat or reality of any actual danger.
But the footage they will not show is that of US soldiers in an aircraft gunship firing upon journalists in Iraq; they will not show a baying mob executing a pleading, blood-soaked Gaddafi; they will not show the decapitation of Saddam Hussain in a makeshift, barbaric hanging; they will not show the beheadings of Palestinian children by ‘moderate rebels’ in Syria; and nor will they show the burning alive of a Jordanian pilot in a cage by ISIS.
However they should show these images.
These images constitute facts and furthermore the penultimate facts in the prolonged crises that the west has created.
It is easy to say ‘war is hell’; it is easy to say ‘respect the sovereignty of Syria’; but it is much simpler to show the images of what years of working to destabilise peaceful and prosperous countries has accomplished.
Whenever a Russian veteran of the Great Patriotic War speaks, one ought to listen. Their words are formed by individual experiences. However most nonetheless follow a certain pattern. There is a theme which conveys the horrors of war, the pride of patriotism in a dark hour and the willingness never to inflict such things on future generations.
The experiences of the 1940s have made Russia a country hesitant to go to war. No Russian family was unaffected by the struggles of the Great Patriotic War.
This is why the horror of all wars, including recent wars, must be shown without censorship. It serves as a warning to future generations about the truly awful nature of war.
Concepts and ideas about war may seem harmless if war exists in the minds of a wider Western public merely as a concept. So long as war is merely a concept or an abstraction it cannot stir the collective horror of the Western public.
The dangerous and hypocritical attitude with which the Western powers approach war is best summarised in a single line from the film Apocalypse Now. In the film Colonel Kurtz states, “We train young men to drop fire on people, but their commanders won’t allow them to write ‘fuck’ on their airplanes because it’s obscene”!
Indeed, the true obscenity of war is the death and chaos which it rains down on its victims, whether they be civilian, military or indeed a nation’s political leadership.
These obscenities cannot be ignored; they must be confronted, which they cannot be if they are censored.
At the same time, many Western companies have made millions by making people irrationally frightened of death: youth elixirs, plastic surgeries, the shunning of the elderly from the media, are all features of the wider Western culture designed to give a false sense of immortality.
This is of course silly. All living organisms die and this is a natural part of the life cycle. What is unnatural is getting killed in a missile attack; what is unnatural is being beheaded; what is unnatural is being shot at from an aircraft gunship.
That is why these most unnatural deaths must be shown to audiences worldwide in order for people to stand up against the governments who act as global merchants of unnatural death.
The priorities of the West once again show a lack of moral courage and a detachment from the more profound elements of reality.
By portraying the ageing process as something evil rather than as something perfectly natural, whilst simultaneously whitewashing the blatant murder of otherwise healthy and contented people, the West has cast itself into the wilderness of collective neurosis, and away from what one might call the sane branches of the human community.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.