Power and Terror: Noam Chomsky in Our Times

The following film premiered in Tokyo on September 11, 2002 on the first anniversary of the 9.11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington.

The film chronicles the thinking and activism, at that time, of the noted linguist Noam Chomsky, who since the Vietnam War era has been a vocal and consistent critic of the way the United States exercises state power in the world arena.

Many people stand opposed to the aggression that has followed 9-11, beginning with the hasty and reckless unilateral attack on Afghanistan and leading inexorably to the mounting of a coercive assault (terrorism) on Iraq by the American and British governments—blindly followed by the Japanese government.

Chomsky’s voice may be unpopular–he is totally ignored by the mainstream American press–but his incisive arguments, based on decades of research and analysis, deserve to be heard and considered. “Power and Terror” chronicles Noam Chomsky’s thinking, through lengthy interviews and a number of public talks given on the West and East coasts of the US during the spring of 2002.

What emerges from the footage is a portrait of the activist intellectual, who has been called a “rebel without a pause” by Bono, the lead singer of the band U2. He is the most important voice of dissent in the United States today.

“Power and Terror” is directed by John Junkerman, whose portrait of the atomic-bomb artists Maruki Iri and Toshi was nominated for an Academy Award. It is his second film done in cooperation with Siglo, an independent Japanese company that has been producing socially-engaged films for over 15 years. Junkerman’s first film with Siglo, “Uminchu: The Old Man and the East China Sea,” featured a marlin fisherman on the island of Yonaguni; it was released theatrically in Japan in 1990.

Power & Terror: Noam Chomsky in Our Times

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