Released on the 14th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, this edition of The Empire Files is a scathing anti-war piece centred on what the filmmakers describe as a political disinformation campaign that leads to the US invasion of Afghanistan following the attacks of September 11, 2001.
Claiming that the United States government preyed on a nation in fear in order to launch a confused, misguided war, the filmmakers give viewers a history lesson in relation to religious extremism in Afghanistan and the surrounding areas. They ultimately suggest that the CIA is in some way to blame for the emergence of the Taliban and Al-Quaeda.
Many ways considered to be this generation’s Vietnam War, the filmmakers highlight quotes that support their thesis. A statement from a British military official reveals a lack of faith in the United States’ strategies and any potential for a successful outcome, and a letter from a US soldier pleads with his government to end the futile mission, claiming it is only putting himself and his military brethren in harm’s way with little reason.
The film notes how many lives have been lost since 2001, and questions how many more will be lost as it is predicted US military bases in Afghanistan will be there until at least 2024. Changes in the Afghanistan government have failed to lead citizens to a safer democratic society, instead of turning the country turn into the world’s leading provider of opium.
In speaking to peace activist Dahlia Wasfi we learn about the death squads that have contributed to the rise of ISIS and the overall brutality that has been brought to Iraq in recent years. She claims it is the US that enabled these environments of destruction and inhibited growth by helping to bring dictators to power. Wasfi explains the various negative impacts of so many complicated political factors, giving the most articulate anti-war testimonial of this short, information-dense film.
9/11 and the Belligerent Empire is a passionately critical film that examines the motivation behind the United States’ invasion of Iraq, leaving viewers to question if peace in the Middle East will ever come about as a result of US military interference