Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak for me
The title line above comes from a poem by Martin Niemöller published in a book (They Thought They Were Free) by Milton Mayer in 1955. In the full text it concisely deals with the slow creep rise of a fascist power (in this case the Nazis). If we have learned anything from history, it’s that we learn nothing from history, and to our detriment repeat our failings. Well, maybe not us as individuals acting nefariously, but the ever increasing Neanderthal behemoth that is contemporary government has ALOT of skeletons in its finely made walnut closet.
In the somewhat excellent Oliver Stone TV series ‘The Untold History of the United States’ that was broadcast this year, it gave great credence to the birth of an American ideology to become The economic super power global empire after World War II, and forever more. With the establishment of a number of financial bodies over many years which ultimately served to benefit the self serving corporate interests of the USA, this dominance would be methodical, glacier like, and crushing anything in it’s path.
A natural evolutional tributary of this financial crusade is the G8 (The Group of 8), a body set up by the richest countries in the world, where annual meetings are set up to discuss, well nobody truly knows. But the ever increasing siphoning of public funds into private offshore pockets, shows that it’s not the growth of our standard of living that is being served by our ‘elected’ representatives. And it’s certainly not mainstream media that is going to keep tabs their machinations.
Thankfully there is a growing awareness of the disservice such bodies are having on societies all around the world. And once again it’s the medium of film that’s stepping up to the parapet in the fight back for the general betterment of society. The latest edition of this positive resistance comes in the form of Daniele Vicari’s ‘Diaz: Don’t Clean Up This Blood’, a dramatization of an orchestrated brutal, barbarous event by Italian police and subsequent cover up (planting of false evidence) by the authorities at the G8 Summit that was held in Genoa in 2001.
Told through various tangents that slowly weave together to give the much bigger blood stained picture, it shows the tactics employed around the world by Governments to suppress dissenting views. In fact that is one of the most unnerving things about the movie. What is portrayed, is happening now in many countries, including the UK, where this week there were arrests of protestors for the act of planning to protest.
The crux of the movie, is the vicious attack on protestors who were using a school as a hostel during the Summit. In deliberate acts of incitement/provocation by the police (including allegations of police employing fascist thugs to start riots) which ultimately fulfilled their degenerate desire for suppression. Such oppressive tendencies are reprehensibly supported by the rather disturbing knowledge that Italian law doesn’t recognise torture as a crime.
There was a broad spectrum of people from around the world coming and working together for the protest, which is astutely represented by multiple languages being used in the dialogue, a global insurgence against a carbon copy government force.
It’s a harrowing story I didn’t know anything about, but instantly recognise similarities to other events. I was fortunate to see the film on the big screen, which really adds to it’s potency. There were also speakers after the screening who where active contributors to the film such as Hamish Campbell, his original video footage of the 300 Italian Police storming of the school is used. Hearing his account, and of others who were in the audience, as visceral as the movie is, I didn’t think it was enough. I’m no fan of ‘torture porn’ horror movies by any stretch, but until you’ve experienced the raw brutality at work in such accounts, it’s easy to dismiss. To defeat such horror, you have to stare directly into it’s eyes. That involves knowing what is going on. In that context, this a somewhat important contribution to our awareness, these people are speaking to us, trying to warn us, but are we listening?
Diaz: Don’t Clean Up This Blood is out this week on DVD/Blu Ray.