Green Zone opens March 12

Green Zone finally got the story right this time…

Director Paul Greengrass (“The Bourne Supremacy,” “The Bourne Ultimatum” and “United 93”) has delivered an Iraqi wartime thriller with the Green Zone.  The star studded cast includes Matt Damon as Army Chief Roy Miller; Greg Kinnear as Pentagon Special Intelligence Coordinator Clark Poundstone; Brendan Gleeson as Central Intelligence Agency Chief to Baghdad Marty Brown; Jason Isaacs as special forces operative Briggs; Amy Ryan the hotshot journalist with The Wall Street Journal as Lawrie Dayne and Khalid Abdalla portraying Freddy, an Iraqi citizen with a passionate agenda.

In 2003, Baghdad’s in the throws of covert calamity, over-populated congestion, social unrest, revenge killings, and hostility among the Iraqi citizens who attempt to resist occupation by our U.S. military that promise democracy, as they witness their societal and political infrastructure status dismantled to sand under foot, and become outlaws within their own borders. With tight camera shots, an almost in-your-face perspective; one can’t help but smell the sweat of fear and taste the sand that leaves grit in your teeth afterward.

It doesn’t take long to figure out the theme of Green Zone; it’s the hunt for Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) that somehow will justify our U.S. presence in Iraq. The questions become….where are they, what are they and with classified Intel inaccurate, how is Chief Miller to lead his men?  While journalist Dayne and Chief Miller scramble to find the truth about U.S. involvement in the Iraqi War, they are tripped up by a disconnect of information, nothing is as it seems, who the sources are and who can be trusted within our fractured government officials representing The Pentagon, the CIA, all the way up to the Oval Office.  Reliable intermediaries are called upon to report to the world the reason we went to war and the logical finger points at WMD.  But wait — surely we all remember President Bush proudly announcing on board an aircraft carrier that our U.S. involvements “mission is accomplished” with that banner billowing about in the background. What dominates is a sense of urgency to report skewed good news, not accurate news, to the United States and the globe that culminates into a sensitive political pressure cooker disregarding Intel, sources and accuracy at all costs.

Green Zone gives one pause to understand seven years hence that the Iraqi War was politically manufactured by a small minority of self-aggrandizing U.S. officials tucked away in places of isolated power, all based on the supposition of WMD that in the end; never did exist! History will show that the number one reason for the Iraqi War was to clean up unfinished business, to get Saddam Hussein. So it begs the question; did the United States join the mayhem on the streets of Baghdad or directly cause it, by coloring it with the glow of democracy-the dawn of new leadership?  Only you can answer that, but for me and thanks to Hollywood; Green Zone finally got the story right this time, mission accomplished.

Heidi Nast

Heidi Nast is the Executive Director of the Arts Engagement Foundation of Kansas City and Co-Founder of KC Studio Magazine.

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