Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Blood And Oil: The Middle East In World War One (2006)

Blood And oil is a film I did not want to see. I have a friend who is very into the First World War and is on the lookout for new documentaries on the subject. She has a huge library of books but since she is not connected to the Internet she doesn’t have that many documentaries, except what I can find for her. I had found Blood And Oil ages ago but I couldn’t justify the price tag, even as a gift, for a film I knew nothing about; even more when you consider that I had been burned by several other films which promised much on the First World War and delivered almost nothing. I only picked this film up because I got it used for about five bucks.

I wish I had picked it up sooner.

This is a wonderfully informational documentary on the war in the Middle East that takes events to about 1923 and lays out how we are still dealing with the repercussions of that war today. Rarely have I seen any part of the First World War as clearly explained as is done in this film. Actually the joy of the film is that it not only explains what happens and why, but also why it matters today. If you want to know why we’re in Iraq or dealing with Iran you need to see this movie.

The story of the film begins in 1914 as the great powers (in this case the Ottoman Empire’s leaders in Turkey), decide to side with the Germans and make a grand grab for power and territory. How that all goes wrong is the story, with the details of the war in the Middle East showing us why the countries are set up the way they are.

I thought I was going to watch this half-assed and end up getting annoyed after half an hour. Instead I ended up watching it straight through to the end twice in a row.

Yeah, it’s that good.

It’s also completely off the radar.

Its on DVD but no one is paying any attention to it, so with a little luck you should be able to get a used copy cheaply. Trust me, if you like war stories or just want to know about what's going on today, you need to see this film.

1 comment:

  1. Hi there, I've just watched this documentary, and it is actually a huge movie. I even finished translating it into Arabic after a hard work, because such enlightenment needs to be overlooked carefully, particularly by Arabs. This history is related to our fate as a nation tries find its way toward freedom, dignity and independence. Meanwhile, although the documentary blames Britain and France for this chaos in Middle East, USA is strangely walking the same path. Arabs dilemma comes from two things; first, is planting an outside entity in the middle of the Arab World by Western Powers in order to avoid solving the "Jewish Issue" inside Europe, second, is support dictatorships and puppet backwarded regimes in the region by (again Western Powers led this time by USA) to guarantee its interests regardless the good willing of Arab nation. If examined history carefully and objectively, you will discover that Muslims and Arabs protected and embraced Jewish people along history, and all their tragedies came from Europe: genocides - expelling - stealing their money... etc. Meanwhile, any reasonable person will discover that all Jews were living in peace and security for their lives and honors and money, and above all their religious believes -including praying in Jerusalem- guaranteed in all Islamic periods: UmayyadÙˆ Abbasid, until Ottoman empire. Therefore, if USA continues to apply such two policies, surely conflicts and strives will enrage in Middle East, over and over. You must not fool yourself by saying: "Oh, they are bunch of crazy people and they do disasters like massacres and bloody wars if we (the west) get the hell of here". Because it is not from our tradition to commit mass crimes, but we believe really in peace truly. And the West itself created the game of "terrorism" clearly as a reason to prolong its influence and occupation either by "Israel" or directly by USA. And thanks again for this chance to exchanging thoughts with you.