Palestinians vow death for 'Bruno'

5633_ms_d008_0053r1Sacha Baron Cohen isn’t laughing. The star of  “Bruno” has mightily pissed off the wrong people.

The Palestinian Al-Aqsa Martys’ Brigades, whose suicide bombings have murdered scores of Israeli civilians, aren’t happy with how the British comic mocked them in “Bruno,” according to World Net Daily.

“We reserve the right to respond in the way we find suitable against this man (Cohen)” said the statement.  “This movie was part of a conspiracy against the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades,” continued the statement, released through a senior member of the group in the West Bank.

Just what Al-Aqsa might do to Cohen isn’t clear, though considering the suicide bombers that have destroyed packed Israeli buses, it’s probably more than a stern warning. Cohen is taking this seriously enough to beef up security for himself and his family.

Cohen’s mistake was to forget that terrorists obsessed with destroying Israel and killing Jews probably aren’t blessed with a sense of humor or self-deprecation. His satrical alter-ego, the gay Ausrian hairdresser Bruno, asked Al-Aqsa if he could be kidnapped because he wanted to be abducted by the best.  Al-Aqsa obviously didn’t appreciate the compliment. In fact, the duped Al-Aqsa leader who met with Bruno is threatening to sue Cohen (perhaps for endangering his life – Al-Aqsa probably isn’t too forgiving toward dupes in its own ranks).

Cohen also managed to antagonize ultra-Orthodox Jews, who almost rioted when he pranced down a Jerusalem street in his Bruno costume. It’s a sign of a good comic that he doesn’t play favorites.

I haven’t seen “Bruno.” I don’t find Cohen that funny (“Borat” was hit-or-miss). But I hope the Palestinian threat doesn’t chill political humor. Humor is often the best vehicle we have to understand the darker sides of humanity.  Want to learn about the insanity of Nazism? Watch Charlie Chaplain’s “The Great Dictator.” You’ll learn more from Chaplain’s dead-on imitation of Hitler than from a dozen history books.

So I think I will see “Bruno.”  If it’s bad enough for terrorists, it’s good enough for me.

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4 Responses to Palestinians vow death for 'Bruno'

  1. Rachel King says:

    The movie was…weird, maybe even bad, but he sure doesn’t deserve to be threatened with death for it.

  2. Eileen White Read says:

    Hi Michael,
    It is truly troubling to think the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigates might target Sacha Barron Cohen and his family for violence. This dangerous group is capable of carrying out its threats. There seem to be circulating around the net some wild stories about Sacha Cohen that terrorist groups then pick up and believe, including this one from Counterpunch:
    “Two years ago while in the process of gathering information about Cohen previous film Borat, I found out that Cohen had put back his wedding to former Home and Away star Isla Fisher due to some deep ‘religious’ reasons. “The couple,” so I learned, “have postponed the big day so Isla could study the Bible in Israel before converting to Sacha’s religion of Judaism.” This was enough to convince me at the time that Cohen wasn’t that different from his chauvinistic, tribally-orientated protagonist Borat. For those who fail to understand the meaning of the above, Cohen is not just Jewish, he didn’t just ask his fiancée to join his extended family, he didn’t send her to a London Rabbi either. He really went for the ‘full Monty,’ that is: the Israeli experience. Cohen is in fact a devout Zionist and it would be interesting to elaborate and analyze his work from a Jewish Identity-politics perspective.”
    I don’t think far-left Western writers realize that, when they write this kind of inflammatory stuff, it is not just fodder for anti-Jewish terrorist groups, it can be dynamite.

    • Michael Peck says:

      There’s nothing “dynamite” about an anti-Semitic slur against Sacha Barron Cohen. The fact that the Counterpunch writer accuses Cohen of being “chauvinistic and tribally-oriented” because his wife studied Judaism in the Jewish state says more about the writer than Cohen. Unfortunately, some people hate Israel so much that it becomes an obsession. Perhaps you’ve met a few, Eileen.

  3. Mish says:

    I was going to reply to Eileen, but then I realized how retarded it would be to try to argue with someone who thinks that people become terrorists because of a half-assed critique of tribally-oriented politics.

    Also, pro-tip: you should do your research before you claim Cohen met with Al-Aqsa.

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