"IRAQI SHORT FILMS"

ARGENTINA - 2008

94mins.
COLOR + B&W
VIDEO
BETA SP
RATIO: 4.3
SOUND: STEREO

DIRECTOR: MAURO ANDRIZZI
EDITING: MAURO ANDRIZZI - FRANCISCO J. VAZQUEZ MURILLO
TECHNICAL ADVISOR: PEPO RAZZARI


CONTACT:

MONO FILMS
MAURO ANDRIZZI
ACHAVAL 221 1ER PISO
CP 1406 - BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA
T+F 54 11 3527 0059
mauroandrizzi@hotmail.com
www.iraqishortfilms.com.ar





SYNOPSIS

"Iraqi Short Films" is the result of a long term investigation of the propaganda generated by all the forces implicated in the conflict: the private security contractors, the U.S-led occupation army and the militias resisting the invasion.


What is Iraqi Short Films about?

In Iraq there are thought to be at least 140 armed bands resisting the military occupation. Gathered according zones of influence, provinces, clans, ethnic origins, and differences in the way of handling the resistance, those 140 armed bands form approximately 25 militias or small guerrilla armies with trained militiamen. Most of the militias are sponsored financial and militarily by some of the Middle East autocracies. Strong political allies of the USA some of them, but at the same time they need to control the American military influence in the zone. Every militia has between 500 and 1000 members, and everyone has specific designated duties: recruiting, financiation (funding), intelligence, spying activities, facilitators, experts in bomb making, suicide operatives and foot soldiers.

Since the U.S-led invasion in 2003, the militias dramatically increased the number of affiliates. Around 25% of those operatives are non-Iraqis, the so-called "foreign fighters". They enter the country crossing the borders illegally, most of them coming from Saudi Arabia, Libya, Yemen, Jordan, Egypt, and also from the North of Africa: Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia. The disastrous occupation of Iraq created the ideal training field for this fighters to win experience and confidence, and it is supposed that after the Gulf War ends, they would return to their origin countries to start or continue the Jihad (Holy War) there: they will try to overthrow monarchies and secular governments, establishing forms of ruling compatible with the Islamic law.

These multinational militias operating in Iraq are mixed with the civil population. When they move into action, they use the surprise attack: ambush with small fire arms or heavy weaponry like ex-Soviet era machine guns and AK 47 rifles, rocket propelled grenades (RPG), improvised explosive devices (IED) and suicide attacks (martyrdom).
Al-Madhi Army, Jaish Ansar al Sunna (Army of the Protectors of the faith "Sunna"), ISI (Islamic State of Iraq), Tawil Wal Jihad (Unification and Holy War) and Ansar al Islam (Protectors of the Islam) are the most actives militias in terms of operations carried out inside Iraq.
These groups videotape all their acts of war, and the use the material as recruitment propaganda and as proof of effectiveness in the theatre of operations to get money and weapons and to gain support for their cause. Most of militias have their own video production and broadcasting office, with several people assigned to this specific task. They post-produce and improve the quality of the material obtained in the operations. They also add the logo that distinguishes each militia, and voices over the image with praises, congratulations, or instructions for other operatives. The militiaman who videotapes the acts of war is always hidden, away from the action using a camera with extremely powerful zoom lenses and teleobjectives.
Hidden in a previously designated place to get the best possible shot, he frames and videotapes a moment in war.
Operating in Iraq, the occupation army, United States, has 180000 soldiers with and extra back up of 7000 British troops, and few hundreds of Polish and Australians. These last two countries are preparing their withdrawal by the end of 2008, after the fall of their conservative governments in the general elections.
Besides that number of soldiers officially declared by the U.S Department of Defence, there's another quantity of intelligence agents (unregistered), and private security employees, the so-called "civil contractors". They work for various private companies with strong influences in Washington. Each one of those security companies is a small private army, with well trained, armed and experienced members, like retired military or policemen personnel. Those companies are hired to provide security and escort convoys through the streets, highways or alternative routes in Baghdad and all over the country. They protect and build occidental economic interests, like pipelines or bridges used to transport goods and equipment, or they just drive trucks in hot zones. They also escort American and Iraqi politicians and businessmen from all over the world. In total, there are thought to be around 100000 private security employees in Iraq, and they come not only from U.S, but also from South and Central America, Australia, Great Britain, and some other European countries, seduced by a good salary.
U.S soldiers and private security employees also carry cameras, even if it is not allowed by the U.S Department of Defence. Some acts of war and raids are videotaped sometimes for logistical purposes, battle analysis, or just to use the material as propaganda to be filtered to the press -if the operation is successful- to boost the moral of the troops and people back in U.S and to recruit new soldiers.
But U.S soldiers are not allowed to film the war. They do it anyway, spreading and broadcasting images without permission, violating the orders and restrictions imposed by their superiors. Videos that show the real war, with casualties on both sides, scary situations and the horror of the day-by-day in the occupied Iraq.

"Iraqi Short Films" is the result of a long term investigation of the propaganda generated by all the forces implicated in the conflict: the private security contractors, the U.S-led occupation army and the militias resisting the invasion.

 


MAURO ANDRIZZI