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Oprah talks Blood Diamonds December 4th

November 30th, 2006 Posted in Charity, Film/Television, General, Music, Politics, Travel

Leonardo DiCaprio, Djimon Hounsou, Oprah, Blood DiamondsA few weeks a go, I got word that Oprah was going to tape a show on the Blood Diamond controversy. She had already done a show where she reunited a Sierra Leonean girl who, after suffering limb amputation at the hands of rebels, had not seen her family in years. Catching on to the growing controversy, director Ed Zwick and Leonardo DiCaprio, were invited to tape a Blood Diamond episode of the Oprah Winfrey show. Originally scheduled for December 6th, the day of the movie premiere and two days before the release, now the the Oprah special will air on Monday December 4th , the same day Russell Simmons is expected to conclude his fact-finding trip to Africa. Set your Tivos boys and girls.

  • Eugene Harkins

    Long on Violence Short on Understanding, December 22, 2006 New York Times Movie Reviews RReviewer: multiling.
    Blood Diamond shocks the viewer with scenes of senseless carnage but offers no insight into the sad and tragic civil war in Sierra Leone.The poor West African country has endured centuries of enslavement and exploitation by European whites (the Portuguese, the Spanish,the British) and corrupt African officials. When insurrection broke out in 1991, the RUF had a valid and just cause. The country was mired in abject poverty and misery while outsiders (including the local Lebanese)pillaged its rich natural resources. While the RUF were soon corrupted by their ceaseless quest to control the diamond trade and their brutal tactics to achieve political power, the film’s simplistic portrayal of them as violent drug-crazed thugs and robot-like child soldiers completely excludes the legitimacy of their original cause. Of equal importance and a central contradiction within the film itself is its duplicitous presentation of the so-called Kimberly Process, which seeks to trace raw diamonds from discovery down through the marketing process, in order to ban so-called “blood diamonds” used to finance African insurrections. How convenient for the diamond cartel that seeks to maintain high world prices by restricting supply! The Kimberly Process offers little to the poor and dispossessed majority of Sierra Leoneans and does nothing to respond to their developmental needs.

    Eugene Harkins, author Where Witch Birds Fly, A novel on the civil war in Sierra Leone

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