Search - WMD: Weapons of Mass Deception on DVD

WMD: Weapons of Mass Deception
WMD Weapons of Mass Deception
Actors: Peter Arnett, George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Maurice Hinchey, Nicholas Johnson
Director: Danny Schechter
Genres: Documentary
NR     2005     1hr 38min

There wars going on in Iraq one was fought with armies of soldiers bombs and a fearsome military force. The other was fought alongside it with cameras satellites armies of journalists and propaganda techniques. One war was...  more »


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Movie Details

Actors: Peter Arnett, George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, Maurice Hinchey, Nicholas Johnson
Director: Danny Schechter
Creators: Danny Schechter, Anant Singh, Anna B. Pizarro, Barbara Kopple
Genres: Documentary
Sub-Genres: Documentary
Studio: Cinema Libre
Format: DVD - Color - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 03/08/2005
Release Year: 2005
Run Time: 1hr 38min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated)
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

The background from a seasoned reporter
odanny | Peoria, Illinois | 04/17/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"An insiders look by a seasoned journalist who has been in the trenches and is not afraid to pull the cover away and look at why there is either disinformation or a cursory examination of our foreign policy by the media, usually it is collusion with the GE's and Disney's but it also goes farther, and is explored well by Danny Schechter, who has been around the block a time or two and knows of what he speaks. He sees things through a largely neutral eye, and leaves out histrionics or accusations for the most part, focusing his view on what went wrong with journalism being skeptical and analytical and not part of the official party line.

He looks also at the Arab media, their perceptions, and how they broadcast death and suffering (strangely, prior to 9/11 Al Jazeera, that now famous network all Americans have heard of, was considered a tool of Israel and Washington by much of the Arab world)

A great and very informative look at the backroom dealing, wheeling, and waiting the media is forced to endure, the news conferences and release of military information in encapsulated sound bites of often meaningless double speak, and the rarity with which any hard questioning occurs of governmental decision making by major media outlets (disregarding FOX, of course) and in regards especially to the war ongoing in Iraq. A very informative look at how the media conducts its day to day business and how the Bush administration is essentially also engaged in an 'information war'.

Embedded Deception
!Edwin C. Pauzer | New York City | 08/28/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)

"In the Weapons of Mass Deception, the producers show how this administration was determined to win media support and thus the country's support for their adventure into Iraq.

Mass media, now owned by large and conservative conglomerates avoided the anti-war stories, to the point of refusing to run commercials for people who were opposed to the war. Anti-war demonstrations received marginal coverage, at best. When Phil Donahue had opposed the war, and said so publicly on his show, the network cancelled his top-rated show. His replacement? Michael Savage who lasted less than four months with ratings in the cellar. Clearly, this "liberally-biased" media did not want to rock the conservative boat.

The administration's genius turned out to be first orienting and outfitting reporters with kevlar helmets and vests, and showing them how to use gas masks for chemical attacks that would never come. This gave the media the feeling that Iraq was an enemy.

The embedding process was sheer administration genius. By placing reporters with our soldiers and marines, they identified with them to the point that their stories had lost all objectivity, and they had been reduced to a micro view of the war.

While some may complain that this production is biased, that is what the producer's slant is. It is also what he is already describing. The bias was in the media being duped by the administration and losing their objectivity in reporting the war.

Any criticism this DVD may receive, the facts are irrefutable. All these things happened. Schecter simply compiles these facts and presents them in a logical and presentable fashion.

This is recommended viewing."
The end of the journalistic age...
H. Hubbard | California | 12/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I gave this DVD five stars because of the credentials of Danny Schechter and the way he delivered his argument. He is a well respected media critic well known throughout media circles for asking the toughest questions at media conferences and has appeared on just about every mainstream media outlet. He was a war correspondent in Vietnam and Cambodia, he was a producer for 20/20, worked for CNN and ABC, and has authored a couple of books. He successfully dissects the media with regards to the run-up to the war in Iraq, the embedded reporters, and the aftermath of the invasion.

You will see in this video clips and interviews with several well known media personalities along with Generals in the military, a retired Colonel who taught propaganda in the military War Colleges, authors, and some of the embeds themselves. You will see how the media was seduced by the government after 9-11 by means of access and cash. Journalism is most certainly dead with regards to mainstream media! You will even hear Kristiana Amanpour criticize her own network for crawling into the sack with the government.

The argument that was also well made was how the Neo-Con's believe that Vietnam was lost solely due to the media and not because of bad policy and how they are determined this time to `get it right'. You will also see how they `got it right' by the ingenious Pentagon embedded reporters program, they must have known of the effects of the Stockholm Syndrome, makes a lot of sense when you look at the big picture I think.

This documentary will show you how the death of responsible journalism has turned into `coverage' and the propaganda techniques that are used. Most interesting example I thought was the sports metaphor technique with the "dum-dum-dumm" football kick-off type music that the networks would use preceding a segment leading up to the war and all the `CNN Generals' that were used to draw lines on computerized maps of the battlefield, just like a football coach does on the field, and how they would promote, not report the war through all the flashy techniques describing new weaponry and the like and how they were told to "sex up the graphics". The fact that ALL of the networks hire psychologists to maximize the use of these graphics and music tells me that their intentions are not to inform us in the first place. You will see how the war was turned into a bloodless game through the use of video game like footage from `smart' bombs and the use of playing cards to show who was captured and was still out there. It's not supposed to be like Hollywood action oriented production but the government paid a million dollars to a Hollywood producer to set up the media center at CENTCOM!

You will be presented with the facts behind the Jessica Lynch propaganda scheme, the same with the toppling of the Saddam statue, the real reason why Peter Arnett was fired from CNN, how Ruppert Murdoch paid Saddam almost half a billion dollars just so that his reporters would be given access to enter Iraq during the time leading up to the war, and several other instances that will show you that what you are seeing is in fact NOT journalism, but "militainment".

Schechter definitely makes the argument that the more you watch TV, the less you know. If you want to be well informed you must not be a `consumer' of news but a critical thinker. I highly recommend this film as it is entertaining and very informative. WARNING: You should be ready for a big dose of reality as well as some people may be offended, especially Fox `news' viewers. Broaden your horizons and watch this film.