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number 2

Dipomatic Intent

By Kevin Doyle

Taut, dramatic music plays as an F-16 drops out of a fog bank, rushing towards an aircraft carrier being battered by the waves of an angry sea. The bomber lands on its rain-slicked deck and screams past the camera. We smash cut to the bridge, which is boiling with chaos.

Movie Announcer Guy: From the makers of The Rock, Extreme Prejudice, and Not Without My Baby comes…

Rear Admiral Striker: “Wrap it up boys; we’re going home.”

Movie Announcer Guy: A 30-year program to change the prejudices against America in Islamic culture by outreach, aid, and education.

Luke Striker: “But Dad! I came here to fight!”
Rear Admiral Striker: “You don’t understand the complexities of global politics today son. We’re going home and this will be taken care of with economic sanctions and diplomatic relations, behind closed doors. No one’s going to die over this one… it’s a great day to be an American!”

Movie Announcer Guy: DIPLOMATIC INTENT, Coming January.

This does not put butts in seats.

But the GOP put butts in seats—specifically the seats of the Senate and House—because they more correctly read the frustration with how things became so got-damned complicated all of a sudden. In the same way that people hire accountants to know tax law, we are in a phase of trusting politicians to figure it out for us and just let us know how it turns out. Can’t we just watch the nose-cam shot of a few things being blown up by smart bombs and have the world be safe for Americans again? Can’t I go eat mushrooms on the beach with a bunch of ravers under a full moon on the beach in Phuket without worrying something will blow up? Americans have questions, and they want short answers.

I’m a “Do it for me and tell me when it’s over” kind of citizen. I believe in a strong military. I get a little hard when I watch Apocalypse Now and Robert Duvall calls in a napalm strike on the tree-line so they can surf.

But there is no war on terrorism. A war on terrorism is like whacking your head with a hammer trying to kill cold germs. We can be vigilant, defensive, change our intelligence system completely. We can stop us-versus-them foreign policy, develop alternative energy resources, and stop aggressive posturing. We can keep oil-men out of any position that sets policy, and adopt economic policies that give poor cultures better options than enrolling in radical Islamic schools. But other than that it’s a slow, boring process of changing a few radical cultures’ opinions of us. And that takes time and makes a pretty boring story.

But it’s a story you have a ticket to nonetheless. Stay awake.

Kevin Doyle is a writer/director working in NYC.

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