While riffling through the desktop pile of pirate videos this evening, I saw one I hadn't expected to find: a pre-release version of Charles Ferguson's No End in Sight, the very powerful documentary about the origins of catastrophe in Iraq. (No, this wasn't just another DVD I'd picked up for 87 cents at the local video store -- and I'll explain my Chinese video-store ethics some other time. It was an early copy Ferguson had sent me, because I'd discussed the project with him at its start. I thought I'd sent it back, but...)
My wife and I watched it again this evening, while eating dinner. Pretty soon it was hard to eat. Nothing in the film is "new" in a technical sense -- we all have heard that there was too little preparation for occupying Iraq, we all know that it was idiotic for Americans not to have stopped the scorched-earth looting of Baghdad, etc. But to see it all take place again, accompanied by the feckless comments of our national leaders.... It would be in Donald Rumsfeld's interest to use some of his wealth to buy up all available tickets to the movie, to minimize the number of people who see it and become newly and furiously contemptuous of him. Walter Slocombe, Paul "Medal of Freedom" Bremer, and Dick Cheney would also be wise to chip in.
I actually recommend mass viewings of this film as a way to mark Rove's departure and reflect upon the way he has changed America. He is the unacknowledged offstage actor through much of this drama, and not simply in winning reelection for the team that created the disaster. He is also there, in spirit, as the occupation staff in the Green Zone is re-populated by 23-year olds whose main qualification was service in College Republicans. In honor of Karl, check this movie out.
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