Saturday, February 25, 2012

Sacha Baron Cohen banned? No, but 'General Aladeen' is. Woe be unto Dictators.

Sacha Baron Cohen has been asked by The Academy not to dress as 'General Aladeen' at the Oscars. The world is becoming a very unfriendly place for dictators, even fictional ones.?

It?s hard to imagine how 2012 could be any worse for the world?s hapless and beleaguered dictators and warlords after that (ahem) horrible Arab Spring craze last year ? with people-power movements toppling despots in Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya.

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Consider the arrest warrants for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir and former Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi, issued by the International Criminal Court at the Hague, the anticipated human rights investigation of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, the looming trials of former Chadian dictator Hiss?ne Habr? and former?Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo, the pending verdict on former Liberian President Charles Taylor, and the ongoing manhunt for Joseph Kony, warlord and founder of the genocidal Lord?s Resistance Army in the dense borderlands of the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

As if that list of indignities wasn?t long enough, we can add another dictator to the list of the banned: General Aladeen.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has banned a certain General Aladeen from attending the 84th?annual Academy Awards ceremony on Feb. 26.

Technically, General Aladeen isn?t a real person ? he?s a character portrayed by the satirist Sacha Baron Cohen, creator of ?Borat? and ?The Ali G Show,? as well as the voice of King Julian in ?Madagascar.? A movie portraying the general, entitled "Dictator," is due to open later this year.?


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