Friday, May 27, 2005

Hissing from the Audience at David Hare's ANTI-BUSH Play, Stuff Happens

Well, I think David Hare, the author of Stuff Happens, would have a problem with calling it an anti-Bush play. But it is. It's a history play, with a decidedly ironic view of the events leading up to the Iraq war. Most of the narration points out the facts that guide the theater-goer down the path to depression and disgust. I can't think of anything that's pro-Bush that mentions Chilabi intellegence source Curveball.

We've had two previews now and the audiences have loved it. Partial standing ovations. Hissing in the appropriate points. Lots of laughter. It's like going to Farhenheit 9-11, except it's more in-depth, better researched, very factual, and 2.75 hours long.

As I mentioned in last night's diary, there is a short program being handed out to the audience for the previews which include a note from the author and some quotes of interest. I asked Hare last night if those quotes were his choices, and he said "some." This Pope Urban II quote about the first crusade was not chosen by Hare, although it is certainly fitting.

Therefore I say to you that God, who implanted this in your breasts, has drawn it forth from you. Let that, then, be your war cry in battle, because it is given to you by God. When an armed attack is made upon your enemy, let this one cry be raised by all the soldiers of God: "It is the will of God! It is the will of God!"-- Pope Urban II, summoning the faithful to the First Crusade, 1095

One quote that Hare did pick is from George HW Bush:

Trying to eliminate Saddam, extending the ground war into an occupation of Iraq, would have violated our guideline about not changing objectives in midstream, engaging in "mission creep," and would have incurred incalculable human and political costs. Apprehending him was probably impossible... We would have been forced to occupy Baghdad and, in effect, rule Iraq. The coalition would instantly have collapsed, the Arabs deserting it in anger and other allies pulling out as well. Under those circumstances, there was no viable "exit strategy" we could see, violating another of our principles. Furthermore, we had been self-conciously trying to set a pattern for handling aggression in the post-Cold War world. Going in and occupying Iraq, thus unilaterally exceeding the United Nation's mandate, would have destroyed the precedent of international response to aggression that we hoped to establish. Had we gone the invasion route, the United States could conceivably still be an occupying power in a bitterly hostile land. It would have been a dramatically different -- and perhaps barren -- outcome. -- George HW Bush and Brent Scowcroft, A World Transformed

Copies of the script are being sold in book form outside the theater, and I'll grab one tonight. There are many quotes in the play that are very memorable, and I'll put a few up here.

You can get your copy of the David Hare play Stuff Happens here.

Crossposted at Supak's Daily KOS.

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