[act-ma] [6/16] Pilger Film, "The War You Don't See', Banned By Lannan Foundation - showing 6/16 in Cambridge, MA

pf soto pfsoto at mynas.com
Mon Jun 13 12:49:00 PDT 2011

   reminder: showing this Thursday, 6/16, at UPandOUT film screenings 
<http://rule19.org/videos/>, 243 Broadway, Cambridge, MA
------------------Original Message------------------

*/'The War You Don't See' /*
*Pilger Film Banned By Lannan Foundation
*By John Pilger*
/*/June 10 2011 "/**/Information Clearing House/* 
<http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/>*/" /*/-- An open letter to 
Noam Chomsky and the general public./

Dear Noam

I am writing to you and a number of other friends mostly in the US to 
alert you to the extraordinary banning of my film on war and media, 'The 
War You Don't See', and the abrupt cancellation of a major event at the 
Lannan Foundation in Santa Fe in which David Barsamian and I were to 
discuss free speech, US foreign policy and censorship in the media.

Lannan invited me and David over a year ago and welcomed my proposal 
that they also host the US premiere of 'The War You Don't See', in which 
US and British broadcasters describe the often hidden part played by the 
media in the promotion of war, notably in Iraq and Afghanistan. The film 
has been widely acclaimed in the UK and Australia; the trailer and 
reviews are on my website www.johnpilger.com <http://www.johnpilger.com>

The banning and cancellation, which have shocked David and me, are on 
the personal orders of Patrick Lannan, whose wealth funds the Lannan 
Foundation as a liberal centre of discussion of politics and the arts. 
Some of you will have been there and will know the Lannan Foundation as 
a valuable supporter of liberal causes. Indeed, I was invited in 2002 to 
present a Lannan award to the broadcaster Amy Goodman.

What is deeply disturbing about the ban is that it happened so suddenly 
and inexplicably: 48 hours before David Barsamian and I were both due to 
depart for Santa Fe I received a brief email with a 'sorry for the 
inconvenience' from a Lannan official who had been telling me just a few 
days earlier what a 'great honour' it was to have the US premiere of my 
film at Lannan, with myself in attendance.

I urge you to visit the Lannan website www.lannan.org 
<http://www.lannan.org> Good people like Michael Ratner, Jeremy Scahill 
and Glenn Greenwald are shown as participants in discussion about 
freedom of speech. I am there, too, but my name is the only one with a 
line through it and the word, 'Cancelled'.

Neither David Barsamian nor I have been given a word of explanation. All 
my messages to Lannan have gone unanswered; my calls calls are not 
returned; my flights were cancelled summarily. At the urging of the New 
Mexican newspaper, Patrick Lannan has issued a one-sentence statement 
offering his regrets to the Lannan-supporting 'community' in Santa Fe.  
Again, he gives no reason for the ban. I have spoken to the manager of 
the Santa Fe cinema where 'The War You Don't See' was to be screened. He 
received a late-night call. Again, no reason for the ban was 
forthcoming, giving him barely time to cancel advertising in The New 
Mexican, which was forced to drop a major feature.

There is a compelling symbol of our extraordinary times in all of this. 
A rich and powerful individual and organisation, espousing freedom of 
speech, has moved ruthlessly and unaccountably to crush it.

With warm regards

John Pilger
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