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Sonoma County Gazette

The Post ~ A Relevant Film for Our Time

Mar 28, 2018
by Robert Feuer


by Robert Feuer

The free press is under attack in a way not seen since the 1960s. The current government is engaged in an ongoing attempt at degradation of some of the long-standing media pillars of our society, while promoting and using to their advantage online websites deficient in fact-checking and proficient in inferior writing. The latter are proliferating like weeds in cyberspace.

Steven Spielberg’s film, “The Post,” couldn’t have come at a better time. It portrays the New York Times and Washington Post locking hands in the early ‘70s in a battle for the truth in an environment of governmental suppression. Much like the political climate now.

The story revolves around Daniel Ellsberg, who initiated the events portrayed, by stealing and photocopying a 47 volume, 7,000-page top secret study later called The Pentagon Papers, a Department of Defense study of U.S. political and military involvement in Vietnam from 1945 to 1967. He had worked on them, but. after becoming convinced of the wrongness of the Vietnam War, Ellsberg, in 1971, slowly stole them and gave them to the Times. The Times and Post began writing about that report, which was rife with serious lies and misrepresentations to the American public, involving several presidents. The government came after Ellsberg with both barrels, wiretapping his phone, breaking into the office of his psychiatrist looking for dirt with which to blackmail him, and charging him with violations of the Espionage Act. A restraining order that discontinued further publication of this news for 15 days went to the Supreme Court which ruled against the government for failing to justify their actions. Next stop, Watergate.

We’re once again locked in a conflict with our government, which is seemingly determined to block facts. They’re engaged in a disinformation campaign that involves possible infection of our voting process, including collusion with Russia. They’re determined to cloud the truth in this and many other areas, leaving the public in a world of confusion.


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