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Oscar Postmortem: What About Iraq? | The Nation

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Oscar Postmortem: What About Iraq?

It's great that the problem of global warming was all the rage at last night's Academy Awards. An Inconvenient Truth deservedly won best documentary, Melissa Etheridge's song from the film scored an upset victory and Al Gore was feted like a king, largely because of his prophecy about climate change.

All well and good. But what about Iraq? Maybe global warming is the most pressing calamity our country currently faces. But you'd think that the war that has killed over 3,000 Americans and cost hundreds of billions of dollars would be worthy of Hollywood's attention. Yet aside from two Oscar-nominated documentaries about Iraq, it barely came up.

I wasn't expecting Jennifer Hudson to suddenly call for immediate withdrawal. And celebrities often do more harm than good when they speak out about issues of the day (paging Jane Fonda). But if Hollywood is going to be socially conscious, they should also be consistent. The war in Iraq is messy, complicated and controversial. That's all the more reason to talk about it, even at the Academy Awards.

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