Wednesday, January 5, 2022

The only Batman on film

Michael Keaton was the best Batman.  DEADLINE reports why Keaton stopped playing BATMAN:

When Michael Keaton returns to his famous Batman/Bruce Wayne role in the upcoming Warner Bros. tentpole “The Flash,” it will mark 29 years since he last played the Caped Crusader on the big screen.

Keaton walked away during the development of “Batman Forever,” which saw Joel Schumacher taking over directing duties from the actor’s “Batman” and “Batman Returns” director Tim Burton. Schumacher and Keaton clashed over the lighter, more campy tone of “Batman Forever.” Keaton did not want to give up the darker feel of Burton’s films, as the actor recently discussed at length on the “In the Envelope” podcast.”

“It was always Bruce Wayne. It was never Batman,” Keaton said of what drew him to the comic book role. “To me, I know the name of the movie is ‘Batman,’ and it’s hugely iconic and very cool and [culturally] iconic and because of Tim Burton, artistically iconic. I knew from the get-go it was Bruce Wayne. That was the secret. I never talked about it. Batman, Batman, Batman does this, and I kept thinking to myself, ‘Y’all are thinking wrong here.’ Bruce Wayne. What kind of person does that?…Who becomes that?”

Joel Schumacher destroyed the franchise.  I don't think that idiot Christopher Nolan brought it back to life.  Michael Keaton really grabbed the role.  It's a shame we didn't get more of his Batman in the leading role.  I'm glad he's going to play the character again as a supporting character but I wish we could have had him as the lead.

Going out with C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"

 Tuesday, January 4, 2022.  Another attack on US forces in Iraq, War Criminal Tony Blair inspires more outrage, Mexico's president offers asylum to Julian Assange, and much more.

Sinan Mahmoud (THE NATIONA) reports, "US troops in western Iraq shot down two drones on Tuesday morning, Iraqi and US-led international coalition officials said."  And before you think, "Wait, that was covered in yesterday's snapshot -- No.  This is anothe drone attack.  Two days in a row.  Cameron Jenkins (THE HILL) explains:

A second attempted drone attack on U.S. forces in Iraq was foiled on Tuesday after Iraq's air defenses shot down armed drones that were headed toward a U.S. air base west of Baghdad.

An official with the U.S.-led international military coalition confirmed the attempted attack on the Ain al-Asad air base, according to Reuters.

On Monday, a similar attack was attempted, but the drones were shot down. 

So let's again raise the important question: Are US forces in Iraq getting combat pay?  They are in a war zone, so they should; however, US Presidnet Joe Biden is so bound and determined to claim 'combat' troops are gone, they may not be.

Moving from one War Criminal to another, as 2021 drew to a close Tony Blair became a knight.  Yes, the royal family of England took time out from embracing the rapist Prince Andrew to embrace Was Criminal Tony.  John Pilger Tweets:

The contempt in which Britain's elite holds the public has never been more eloquently expressed than in the decision to award Tony Blair the highest order of knighthood. One million Iraqis dead, three million dispossessed, a trail of blood to 7/7. Rise Sir Tony!

Andrew Feinstein Tweets:

Desmond Tutu refused to share a platform with Tony Blair, describing him as a war criminal who shud stand trial. Blair is also a war profiteer, having made 10s of millions personally from the invasion of Iraq & his corrupt arms trade links.C ‘The Shadow World’ book for references

4:47 AM · Jan 1, 2022

Yvonne Ridley (MEMO) notes:

Tony Blair's final act as a human wrecking ball could well bring down the British monarchy following the controversial decision by Queen Elizabeth II to award him a knighthood. Not just any old knighthood, you understand; he has been made a member of the Order of the Garter, the country's oldest and most prestigious order of chivalry.

As the world's longest reigning monarch, Queen Elizabeth's many admirers have lavished her with praise for the way she has steered the ship of state for nigh on seventy years by avoiding any embroilment in hot political issues. It wasn't always like this, though. In 1997, the death of Princess Diana exposed fault lines within the monarchy which revealed Britain's royal family to be out of touch with the British people. It was the Queen's then Prime Minister, Tony Blair, and his "peoples' princess speech" which apparently turned public opinion and softened republican murmurs.

Such murmurs are being revived now, though, following her controversial decision to honour the 68-year-old former Middle East envoy in this way. So much so, that "Sir Tony" could well be the undoing of the monarchy. It really is that serious.

Blair's knighthood has also been greeted with bewilderment and outrage around the world, especially in the Middle East where conflict and turmoil continue today as a result of the 2003 war in Iraq which brought untold death, misery, injury and hardship to millions. Blair, of course, hung on the coat tails of US President George W Bush and sold the invasion of Iraq on blatant lies regarding "weapons of mass destruction" in the oil-rich country.

And ARAB NEWS reports:

More than half a million people have called on the British government to rethink the award of a knighthood to former Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Sir Tony, who served as prime minister from 1997 to 2007, was named a knight companion of the most noble order of the garter — the highest accolade possible — in the queen’s honors list for 2021.

An online public petition calling on the government to push the queen to rescind the honor has accrued over 550,000 signatures.

The petition says: “Tony Blair caused irreparable damage to both the constitution of the United Kingdom and to the very fabric of the nation’s society. He was personally responsible for causing the death of countless innocent, civilian lives … in various conflicts. For this alone he should be held accountable for war crimes.”

Caroline Westbrook (THE MIRROR) reminds:

The anger over Mr Blair’s knighthood comes from his decision to send UK Armed Forces into Iraq and Afghanistan following 9/11 – which led to the deaths of more than 600 British military personnel and tens of thousands more civilians.

The war with Iraq began in 2003 with the invasion of the country by a US-led coalition of forces, and ended with the withdrawal of US forces in 2011.

At the time, the then PM built the case for military action against Saddam Hussein’s regime by saying there appeared to be evidence mounting of weapons of mass destruction that could be used within 45 minutes.

However the subsequent Chilcott Inquiry – which looked into the UK’s involvement in the Iraq war – concluded in 2016 that the former Labour leader overplayed the ‘flawed’ intelligence about the dictator’s weaponry and ignored peaceful means to resolve the issue.

And TRT WORLD notes:

The anti-apartheid hero archbishop Desmond Tutu who recently passed away, was even more scathing.

In an opinion piece almost a decade ago, he wrote, "the immorality of the United States and Great Britain's decision to invade Iraq in 2003, premised on the lie that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction, has destabilised and polarised the world to a greater extent than any other conflict in history."

Yet while he has been held generally held in contempt in the public realm, Blair has raked in tens of millions of dollars mingling with some of the world's more corrupt and despotic regimes.

If Tony Blair was worried that his post-prime ministerial career would shudder to a halt given the hate he inspired, he didn't show it.

His first major contract was with the US banking giant JP Morgan, who gave him a five-year contract of $4 million per year.

Tony Blair was also appointed as a Middle East Peace Envoy, at a cost of more than $13 million, a role he held between 2007 and 2015.

For many, that the man who had helped trigger so much war and destruction in the Middle East should be appointed to find a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, smacked as a cruel joke for those living in the region.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Tony Blair resigned in 2015, not having brought peace to the Middle East.

However, by this time, Blair had brought a measure of peace and prosperity for his family, amassing a string of houses in central London worth millions of dollars. His net worth is estimated to be around $60 million.

As revelations of Blair's dealings with the super-rich and authoritarian regimes have periodically trickled into the press, his stature has fallen in equal measure with one British paper calling the former prime minister a "political embarrassment".

Meanwhile journalist John McEvoy Tweets:

Tony Blair being awarded a knighthood while Julian Assange suffers a stroke in prison tells you everything you need to know about Britain.

As TELESUR reports in the video above, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the Presidnet of Mexico, has again offer Julian Assange political asylum in Mexico.  REUTERS notes:

López Obrador reiterated the asylum offer he had made for Assange a year ago, and said that before Trump was replaced as President by Joe Biden last January, he had written him a letter recommending that Assange be pardoned.

Mexico did not receive a reply to the letter, López Obrador told a regular government news conference.

“It would be a sign of solidarity, of fraternity to allow him asylum in the country that Assange decides to live in, including Mexico,” López Obrador said.

The world watches as Joe Biden continues to persecute Julian Assange.

The following sites updated:

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