By: Marjohn Sheikhi

‘There is no exit’, Oliver Stone slams US foreign policy in ME

News ID: 4281695 -
TEHRAN, Apr. 26 (MNA) – Distinguished American director Oliver Stone, while visiting Iran, drew attention to the ‘creative destructive’ foreign policy of the US in the Middle East, aimed at bringing US more profits.

The 36th Fajr International Film Festival posed a good opportunity to have distinguished American director, screenwriter and producer, three-times Oscar winner, Oliver Stone, right here in Tehran.

Stone is best known for the hit films 'Platoon', 'Scarface', 'Born on the Fourth of July' and 'Natural Born Killers'. He is also known for his films on political figures, such as 'JFK' (1991), a polarizing investigation of the circumstances surrounding the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, 'W.' (2008), based on the life and presidency of George W. Bush, 'Comandante' (2003), about Cuban dictator Fidel Castro, and 'South of the Border' (2009), which focused on several other left-wing leaders, notably Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez. 

He is as much of an artistic filmmaker (as proved by his ‘Any Given Sunday’ – a 1999 sports drama film about a fictional professional American football team) as he is a political commentator – "It helps me being in touch with the real world", he says about his passion for making documentaries on political figures. So, it was no wonder that the press conference on Wednesday held among a large gathering of Iranian and foreign press at Charsou Cineplex in Tehran, geared toward Oliver Stone’s remarks on Trump, French President Macron, US wars in the Middle East, and Iran nuclear deal.

“In 2003, George W. Bush invaded Iraq, which we know was a disaster,” Stone said while talking about ‘W.’ and how he tried to deal with America’s foreign policy regarding the Middle East in his 'satirical' production. “There is a very important scene in that movie where the national security and the goals of the United States are discussed. Dick Cheney (played by Richard Dreyfuss) points at a map in the situation room, and it shows the Middle East. Cheney is a ruthless authoritarian and a believer in the American empire. He talks about our goals around the world, the prize – oil, money, resources – is in Eurasia, and he points right at [Iraq] and says, ‘we’re going to Baghdad. Real men go to Baghdad’. Then someone says, ‘and what is your exit strategy, sir?’ and Cheney says, ‘there is no exit.’”

He mentioned that he has no plans at this time to do a film on an Iranian politician, and dismissed rumors about his asking Ahmadinejad, the then Iranian president, for an interview in 2007. “Believe me, I’m much less ambitious than that,” he said.

 He called Saudi Arabia out on being one of the major destabilizer in the Middle East, describing the Saudi regime measures in the region as ‘creative destruction’ – a term he also uses for the US’ foreign policy in the region; “We make a mess and call it peace,” he says, while describing the United States is a global "outlaw".

"We are outlaws, we're doing something that is outlawed internationally, we had no permission to invade Iraq from the UN, we did it, and we continue to do this."

“We made a mess out of Iraq, Syria, Libya, but it doesn’t matter to the American public. It’s OK to wreck the Middle East,” Stone said. “It doesn’t matter who is president — Bush, Obama or Trump, the US will break any treaty."

Stone later likened Donald Trump to Beelzebub, the biblical devil, and highlighted the US involvement in various proxy wars in the Middle East.

Stone also criticized French President Emanuel Macron for joining Trump on his stance against the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. He called Macron a “young man who doesn’t have much of a sense of history or memory of the great traditions of France”, saying that by standing alongside Trump, Macron is trying to show a sign of ‘French power’, the same way as former French President Nicolas Sarkozy did.

“This is a return to the colonialism and imperialism of the old France,” Stone stressed that Macron needs to learn not to become an imperialist.

The 36th Fajr Film Festival will wrap up on Friday after running for 9 days and screening over 100 films from across the world. Other notable guests at this year’s edition included actors Franco Nero and Jean-Pierre Leaud and Italian composer Nicola Piovani.

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