The second documentary on this list of the greatest films of all time is the depiction of the story of the largest demonstration in human’s history in one day on February 15, 2003 across the globe against the American invasion of Iraq. The film rightly opens with the last lines of the poem of “Masque of Anarchy” by the British poet, “Percy Bysshe Shelley” written on the “Peterloo Massacre” in Manchester England in 1819, when 60,000 to 80,000 peaceful demonstrators demanding the reform of parliament were massacred by the British cavalry.
“…Rise, like lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number!
Shake your chains to earth like dew
Which in sleep had fallen on you:
Ye are many—they are few” Masque of Anarchy/ Percy Bysshe Shelley
The film opens first on the protest demonstration in London, England where over one million English people demanded the abortion of the plan invading Iraq and asked for peace. Then the films before showing the film’s credit, browses briefly across the globe and shows a few other similar demonstrations. Afterwards the September 11 of 2001 and the attack on the New York City’s twin towers that prompted George W. Bush to announce the war against Iraq is briefly shown. Then a pro-peace group all around the world organize a “Stop the War Coalition” that leads to the February 15, 2003 demonstration. There are interviews with prominent figures such as Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson, the former chief of staff of US secretary of State, Colin Powell who confess that Bush administration lied to the American people and the world to connect the 9/11 event to Iraq and they faked finding the evidence of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) in Iraq.
The film also discloses the British Government fake report that backed up Bush administration in confirming the existence of WMD in Iraq that was presented to the parliament by the prime minister, Tony Blair. Tim Goodrich, a US Air Force pilot, participating in the air strike confesses that he soon discovered that he and his fellow pilots are dispatched to a unjust war to kill innocent civilians. He continues his own personal observation of the war plot that while Bush was lying that still they expect a peace solution, US and British forces had already been mobilized and ready for their invasion.
Throughout the film we see some of the 789 cities in 72 countries across the globe’s demonstrations against the invasion of Iraq. We witness huge seas of people of all ages from children, men and women all across Europe, including over half a million in numerous cities in France, over 300 German towns including over 300,000 in Berlin, 100,000 in Dublin, over 650,000 in Rome, 55 cities in Spain, the largest in Barcelona and Madrid with over 1,500,000 and 660,000 people, over half a million in Valencia, 250,000 in Sevile, over 70 cities in Canada despite the temperature below -30 C, Over 100,000 in New York City including the 9/11 families and war veterans, over 200,000 in San Francisco, over 200,000 in Syria, over 200,000 in Sydney and over 200,000 in Melbourne and other Australian cities, and over 800 cities around the world, even in Antarctica. The day after the global demonstrations, New York Times truly wrote that there are two superpowers on earth, the United States of America and the people’s power on the streets.
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The Greatest films of all time: 97.We Are Many (England) (2014)