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Rantings of a Sandmonkey

Be forewarned: The writer of this blog is an extremely cynical, snarky, pro-US, secular, libertarian, disgruntled sandmonkey. If this is your cup of tea, please enjoy your stay here. If not, please sod off

Friday, December 30, 2005

Planet of the Arabs

You have to watch this movie and tell me what you think: Quicktime version here, Mediaplayer version here.


At 12/31/2005 02:58:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i am a long time lurker, but sandmonkey, that video says it all. i hope your fellow countrymen and fellow muslims reform and allow pluralism.
thank you for your bravery,

sean...a goofy kuffar

At 12/31/2005 04:07:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bloody amazing. And yet Sean still finds a way to recriminate Arabs.

Okay, so there's a lot that has to be said for the Arab world's lack of pluralism, but for God's sake...

At 12/31/2005 06:06:00 AM, Blogger Highlander said...

Samdmonkey, what we would like to know is what DO YOU think ? I've read the book.
Thank you 4:07am , at least someone has stood up.

I'm looking forward to Twosret's answer.

At 12/31/2005 06:10:00 AM, Blogger Josie said...

Great music.

Well, I've got a couple of comments. Any group of people who are not well understood are used as comic relief in entertainment. That's why you'll notice the groups able to be used change and get smaller. Right now the only type of person who can be truly disrespected in US media are hillbillies. Turn on a kid's show in 2005 for the "Hillbilly Moment" & watch dumb white folks act stupid. That's funny, & fine. Could any other group of people be treated in that way? No.

So anything about Arabs portrayed prior to 9/11 was just the normal we-don't-know-much-about-you and we-don't-understand-you and what we know about some of you is pretty damn bleak, so you get to be the villain or the comic relief.

After 9/11 the media started trying to address the questions many Americans were having... why do you hate us? Why do you want to kill us? And then deal with that in one way or another. Not all of that - for example, on "JAG" where the guy asks the jailed terrorist "what happened to you?" is not racist at all. That's a fair portrayal IMO.

The music rocked.

At 12/31/2005 06:15:00 AM, Blogger Josie said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 12/31/2005 06:16:00 AM, Blogger Josie said...

... oh, I forgot to say: but it's true you can say that the "Arab side" isn't always given fairly or completely, but that's something that first needs to be addressed elsewhere, IMO. I mean, we don't go to the movies or watch TV to be educated about something... if education about things is missing then it's a reflection of a larger issue. Entertainment usually perpetuate accepted things, you know.

At 12/31/2005 10:32:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What I think. It's conditioning. Most of which was pre 9/11.

Arabs are the big bad boogyman... who always get their butts kicked in the end.

Kinda like the Russians and the Germans before them. Of course American media wasn't playing as many mind tricks with those groups as it is with the Arabs. First American media had less of an impact, but also those groups thought themselves as superior to everyone else.

The Arabs have a mean inferiority complex to begin with and they really soak up American pop culture.

Arabs are stereotypes pure and simple. The curious part though, is that Arabs like to play into that stereotype. It's a self-fulfilling something or other. Hell, I'm sure that some Arabs even helped produce some of those cheesy B movies.

It begs the question about life imitiating art or is it the other way around.

Ah who cares. I don't wanna think. I'm going to watch TV now.

At 1/01/2006 01:00:00 AM, Anonymous The Foreigner said...

Notice they looked at movies made between 1896 (!) and 2000?

Did old Bugs Bunny cartoons from the '40s treat other minorities any better?

Lotta grade z movies they showed. Think "True Lies" and "Back to the Future" were the only big-budget ones I could recognize.

I'd have to argue that Hollywood bends over backwards to not portray Arabs & Muslims negatively. After Pearl Harbor, there were plenty of movies depicting the Japanese as villians. How many showed Arab villains after 9-11?

At 1/01/2006 04:25:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmmm... Just take a quick look around the world. If the shoe fits...

At 1/01/2006 07:08:00 PM, Blogger Josie said...

Well, in the past couple of days I've watched some Sinbad movies, and Aladdin, & I've decided hey, not ALL the Arab media portrayals aren't negative... and the Sinbad movie was from the fifties.

At 1/02/2006 01:53:00 PM, Anonymous Jon said...

Nasty propeganda, unnecessarily villefying a race of people.

At 1/02/2006 02:22:00 PM, Blogger CMAR II said...

About 1/2 the scenes from these movies are out of context: Either (like the Sean Aston scene) the charater was not intended to be viewed favorably, or (like one of the Chuck Norris scenes) the character was being deliberately insulting in order to provoke an advesary, or (like the scene from "Rules of Engagement" and the scenes from the "Law & Order" episode) the narrative itself was extremely complex and included a critique of the way Americans view Arabs.

But if Muslims don't like to be view as villains, then more Muslim majority governments and organizations need to deal with the fact that too many Muslims seek media attention as cartoonish bad guys.

It took CAIR over three months to condemn the 9-11 attack. Palestinians danced in the streets after 9-11 and people shot off fireworks Muslim neighborhoods in London and Paris. "Osama" became the most popular name for baby boys in the M.E. immediately after 9-11. Not anymore, because no one...not even Mideastern Arabs like a self-evident loser.

As Americans see more Arabs play the role of hero in REAL LIFE...like the Iraqis, like Americans of Arab decent in the US Army and US Marines, like Dr. Zalmay Khalilzad...then we will see more Arab heroes in American movies and TV. But Arabs need to take the lead in bringing down the "evil doers" among them rather than defending them.

Personally, I'd LOVE to see a TV show like "24" that is based on Pakistani intelligence services successfully hunting down Taliban and al-Qaeda cells in their country. Since a lot of Pakistani intelligence agents are reportedly FAVORABLE to those entities, I think a show like that would be really cutting edge.

Incidentally, Big Pharaoh has a really applicable post for this discussion.

At 1/02/2006 08:51:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about Planet of the Jews. How are Jews portrayed in movies from Arab countries? I recall there was a series in Egypt about the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

At 1/03/2006 12:56:00 PM, Anonymous Mohamed said...

Omar II, eversince 9/11 I've been hearing this claim about osama becoming the most popular name in the middle east, with no way to verify this, do you have a reliable survey of names in the middle east to back this up? Or did you just consider it a given axiom, since it's bad then it perfectly fits arabs?
The osama name example shows how that if you keep on saying the same lie (or unverified information at best) somehow halfway it'll become an irrefutable fact.

At 1/03/2006 02:52:00 PM, Blogger . said...

I am glad you liked it, Sandmonkey. It amused me greatly too.

At 6/24/2006 06:55:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

@ Josie,

"Well, in the past couple of days I've watched some Sinbad movies, and Aladdin, & I've decided hey, not ALL the Arab media portrayals aren't negative..."

Well, Aladdin is a subtle one, since the entire cast is Arab, but watch it again. You'll notice the good guys will have a lighter skin and an American accent. While the bad guys will have a darker skin and a strong Arabic accent.

Coincidence? Maybe, although I couln't imagine Aladdin having an Arabic accent, while the evil guards would speak in an American accent.

J. Krekel, The Netherlands


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