Barak dressed as woman in mossad operation
Original Source Link: (May no longer be active)
Spielberg's peace fears over film of Munich massacre Vengeance
HE LAUNCHED a War on the World this week, but now Steven Spielberg is worried about peace in the Middle East.
The Hollywood director is so concerned about his next film, Vengeance, that he has taken the counsel of Bill Clinton and sought advice from the Israeli government.
The film, which the director began shooting in Malta on Wednesday, tells the true story of a Mossad hit squad with orders to assassinate the Palestinian terrorists responsible for the massacre of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich.
While one team killed nine men and women with various links to the PLO, another unit killed an innocent waiter in a fatal case of mistaken identity.
Spielberg, who won an Oscar for directing Schindler's List and whose War of the Worlds opened this week, is worried about the film's impact on the Middle East peace process and has sought much advice, ranging from his own local rabbi to showing the script to Mr Clinton, the former United States president.
The director is being advised by Mike McCurry, formerly Mr Clinton's White House spokesman, and Allan Mayer, an expert in crisis management.
In a statement released this week, the filmmaker described the story of the Munich massacre and Israel's response as "a defining moment in the modern history of the Middle East".
He also said: "Viewing Israel's response to Munich through the eyes of the men who were sent to avenge that tragedy adds a human dimension to a horrific episode that we usually think about only in political or military terms.
"By experiencing how the implacable resolve of these men to succeed in their mission slowly gave way to troubling doubts about what they were doing, I think we can learn something important about the tragic standoff we find ourselves in today."
The film is set to star Daniel Craig, the British actor tipped as the next James Bond, and Eric Bana, who appeared in Troy.
The script has been written by Tony Kushner, the Emmy-winning playwright who wrote the play Angels in America.
The events of the massacre and aftermath were previously told in the documentary One Day in September, by the Scottish filmmaker Kevin McDonald, for which he won an Oscar.
In 1972, the world watched in horror as the Israeli Olympic wrestling team was taken hostage by a Palestinian organisation called Black September.
After a botched rescue attempt at Munich Airport by the German authorities, the terrorists murdered all 11 hostages.
In retaliation, Golda Meir, the then Israeli prime minister, set up Committee X, an elite group of Mossad agents, also known as the "Wrath of God", who were tasked with the assassination of Palestinians, who were identified by Israeli intelligence as terrorists, including a few who were not directly connected with the massacre in Munich.
The order began an Israeli policy of "targeted killings", which continues today.
In July 1973, an Israeli team travelled to Lillehammer in Norway, where they believed they had cornered Ali Hassan Salameh, who had masterminded the hostage-taking.
But the man the team identified as Salameh and promptly shot dead was Ahmed Bouchiki, an innocent Moroccan waiter. Meanwhile, a separate team tracked down and killed nine individuals who they said were linked to terror operations within the PLO.
One participant in the team was Ehud Barak, the future Israeli prime minister, who dressed as a woman to surprise three PLO leaders in Beirut.
In Kushner's script, the Israeli assassins begin to question the grounds on which individuals are targeted and what their deaths will accomplish.
The director's staff have said that Spielberg's interest in how nations cope with terrorism has deepened since the attacks of 11 September.
Simon Reeve, the author of One Day In September, said yesterday: "I think it will certainly be a controversial film, but Spielberg has never shied away from controversy.
"The difficulty is that nobody is sure of the full story of what happened. The reports of a chilling series of targeted assassinations may have been hyped in order to show the Israelis were fighting back. It was the 9/11 of its time. In many people's eyes, it forever linked the Palestinians with terrorism."