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Mumbai Victimized Again – by Bollywood

Posted on December 11 2010 5:00 pm
Mark Tapson writes about the intersection of Hollywood and terrorism for Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood and Big Peace, David Horowitz's Front Page and NewsReal, Pajamas Media, the Investigative Project for Terrorism, and elsewhere. He was the writer’s assistant and researcher for Cyrus Nowrasteh on, among other projects, "The Stoning of Soraya M." and the controversial miniseries "The Path to 9/11." Mark is currently co-writing a documentary for renowned terrorism expert Steven Emerson.

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But this isn’t that movie. Kuch Log will not be about the victims or survivors of the Mumbai atrocity; it will be about an individual in the Muslim community and how the attacks impact them. Director Mahesh Bhatt says that his intention in focusing on such a character is to change the mindset of Indians who are prejudiced against Muslims, who believe that “the people belonging to [the Muslim minority] have links to terrorism.”

I haven’t seen a script or heard any further description of the project. But based on this, it seems the filmmakers have chosen to devote their storytelling skills and resources to depicting the Muslim community as the real victim, the target of Islamophobia and bigotry and ignorance.

Bigotry is reprehensible. And other Muslims themselves are victims of Islamic extremism. But the Mumbai innocents whose bodies were shredded by bullets or grenades; the rabbi at the Jewish center and his pregnant wife who were sexually tortured and murdered; the survivors whose lives will never be the same – their nightmare is less deserving for these filmmakers? Instead, audiences will be entreated to sympathize with those Muslims who may face bigotry that is, frankly, a result of their co-religionists’ bloody fervor.

Hollywood has yet to take a bold, unequivocal stance against Islamic terror. Apparently Bollywood is following its lead. Meanwhile, the names and faces of the true victims will remain in the dark.

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