Posts Tagged ‘History’

'While the Script is Somewhat Clichéd, We Are Not Movie Critics' - DOD Memo on The Heroes of Desert Storm

‘While the Script is Somewhat Clichéd, We Are Not Movie Critics’ – DOD Memo on The Heroes of Desert Storm

There aren't very many films about the first Gulf War, which is ironic because if ever there was a war for PR purposes, that was it.  While Jarhead and Three Kings were rejected by the Pentagon's Hollywood office, one film that did benefit from military support was The Heroes of ...
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ClandesTime 194 - Oliver Stone's JFK

ClandesTime 194 – Oliver Stone’s JFK

This week, I welcome to the show author and friend James Oddy to discuss the JFK assassination case and its treatment in the Oliver Stone movie JFK. We look at the psychological and political consequences of the assassination, as well as the political and cultural impact of the film. We ...
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Napalm, Ambushes and Russian Roulette: Why the Pentagon Rejected The Deer Hunter

Napalm, Ambushes and Russian Roulette: Why the Pentagon Rejected The Deer Hunter

The epic war drama The Deer Hunter won five Oscars, despite the central conceit and metaphor of the film being inaccurate.  This conceit - that the Viet Cong forced American prisoners of war to play Russian Roulette - is the main reason the film was rejected for DOD support, along ...
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ClandesTime 193 - An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Aukai Collins

ClandesTime 193 – An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Aukai Collins

In 1998 the CIA got an opportunity to infiltrate one of their spies into the Al Qaeda camps in Afghanistan, but turned it down. This week, I examine the autobiography of that spy – Aukai Collins, an American jihadi who became a deep cover agent for the FBI and CIA ...
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The US Navy Supported Captain Phillips - One of the Most Inaccurate Movies In Cinematic History

The US Navy Supported Captain Phillips – One of the Most Inaccurate Movies In Cinematic History

Captain Phillips tells the story of the 2009 hijacking of the Maersk Alabama - a US container ship - off the coast of Somalia, and the subsequent US Navy intervention that killed three of the pirates and arrested the fourth.  It is also one of the least historically accurate films ...
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Born on the 4th of July - Tom on Fortress on a Hill

Born on the 4th of July – Tom on Fortress on a Hill

In the second part of our discussion (following Combat Obscura), Henri, Keagan and I talked about the 1989 Oliver Stone classic Born on the 4th of July.  Based on the real life experiences of Ron Kovic, we charted the film's development in the late 70s and into the 80s, the ...
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ClandesTime 189 - An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Omar Nasiri

ClandesTime 189 – An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Omar Nasiri

Omar Nasiri was a Moroccan who spent 6 years spying on Al Qaeda for several European intelligence agencies. In this episode I review his autobiography Inside the Jihad, including the year he spent in Afghan training camps in the mid-1990s. Focusing on his relationships with French and British intelligence I ...
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'In The Navy' Songwriter Dead at 82

‘In The Navy’ Songwriter Dead at 82

Co-founder of the Village People and co-writer of 'YMCA', 'Macho Man' and 'In the Navy' Henri Belolo died last saturday at the age of 82.  Born in Casablanca, Belolo was a key member of perhaps the first openly gay disco outfit.  He also participated in one of the funniest co-sponsorship ...
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ClandesTime 188 - An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Mubin Shaikh

ClandesTime 188 – An Alternative History of Al Qaeda: Mubin Shaikh

The 2006 arrests of the Toronto 18 was a key moment in the post-9/11 war on terror. It helped internationalise the war effort and added Canada to the list of supposed terrorist targets. This week I examine the life and work of the main Canadian intelligence informant inside the Toronto ...
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ClandesTime 187 – When Entertainment Liaison Offices Go Bad

ClandesTime 187 – When Entertainment Liaison Offices Go Bad

The relationship between government liaison offices and the entertainment industry usually works well, resulting in added production value for the industry’s products and the furtherance of the government’s agendas. But sometimes things go wrong. This week we look at what happens when the relationship breaks down, using examples from the ...
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The Beirut Marine Barracks Bombing and Heartbreak Ridge

The Beirut Marine Barracks Bombing and Heartbreak Ridge

The US military's negotiations on the 1980s Clint Eastwood vehicle Heartbreak Ridge were protracted and complex, resulting in numerous changes before the movie could be approved for Pentagon support.  This included changing Clint Eastwood's character from a soldier to a marine after the US Army rejected the script, but then ...
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When the Producers of Downton Abbey Signed the Official Secrets Act

When the Producers of Downton Abbey Signed the Official Secrets Act

Just like other government departments the Foreign & Commonwealth Office requires film and TV producers to sign contracts with them to provide production assistance.  The agreement signed with the makers of Downton Abbey includes an interesting clause - they signed up to abide by the strictures of the Official Secrets ...
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