Modern Grand-Guignol

I agree with Loretta,

Even the CSI autopsies and other grisly crime shows remind me of nothing so much as the horrific excesses of Le Théâtre du Grand-Guignol, which titilated the jaded audiences of late 19th Century Paris.

I would make an exception in the case of war coverage however.

“I tell you, if you saw what I saw when I go to wars when I’m on the front line with or without soldiers or with civilians or wounded in hospitals, if you saw what I saw, you would never, ever dream of supporting a war again. Ever in your life. It’s a remarkable thing that the cinema, the commercial cinema, feature films can now show the bloodiest, goriest themes which are quite similar to what we see in real life, “Saving Private Ryan,” the guts spilling out. And yet real war cannot be shown without censoring pictures which in many cases are exactly the same as what you see when you go to the cinema. Or when you watch a war movie on television. It’s remarkable. And only when you’re there do you realize—If you go to war, you realize it is not primarily about victory or defeat, it is about death and the infliction of death and suffering on as large a scale as you can make it. It is about the total failure of the human spirit. We don’t show that because we don’t want to. And in this sense journalists, television reporting, television cameras are lethal. They collude with governments to allow to you have more wars because if they showed you the truth, you wouldn’t allow any more wars.” Robert Fisk

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