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Oliver Stone: 'Petraeus is no hero'

American filmmaker and critic of the US war machine says the retired general is not worthy of unreserved support.
Last Modified: 17 Nov 2012 11:22

In the US, former top general, David Petraeus, resigned from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) - the media quickly calling it a fall from grace.

This happened just days after the re-election of President Barack Obama, a victory that his supporters call a clear mandate from the American people.

But for Oliver Stone, the Hollywood director, who for years has been obsessing about the role of the military in American society - neither Petraeus nor President Obama are worthy of unreserved support.

In fact, he sees big problems ahead for the US and its president.

Stone has problems with Obama's foreign policy, his reluctance to reverse George W Bush's strategies such as the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty, the country's race to militarise space and attempts to buy influence around the world.

The celebrated director thinks Petraeus should have been removed a long time ago, that he "screwed up" in Iraq, and was never a "hero", the military and the media made him out to be.

"The bigger issue is [not the sex scandal] but what he has done in Afghanistan and Iraq and that is the primary issue that the media should concentrate on - which they haven't," says Stone. "They have treated him as a hero and they don't question his record and I think this is what's most important and it's been lost in this typical sex scandal, British tabloid kind-of-thing.

"I feel sorry that he should go down for that, I think that he should go down for the truth which is that he screwed it up."

On this episode of Talk to Al Jazeera, Rosalind Jordan has a conversation with Oliver Stone about his scathing and sobering analysis of where the US has been and where it is going.

Talk to Al Jazeera can be seen each week at the following times GMT: Saturday: 0430; Sunday: 0830, 1930; and Monday: 1430.

Click here for more Talk to Al Jazeera

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