Wait, There Was No War?

In Barry Levinson’s Wag the Dog, a spin doctor and a hollywood producer fabricate a war in Albania to distract voters from a presidential sex scandal two weeks before the presidential election. They create a theme song, fake footage of an orphaned girl running through a village on fire, and a POW narrative for someone who they later find out is a convict. The war is a success because the public believes it the entire time even after the CIA tries to shut down the operation and their attention is taken off of the sex scandal. The president wins his re-election and the public believes that the war in Albania ended.

The whole movie is an example of dramatic irony because the American public in the film does not know that the war is fake. Only the audience is aware that Albania is not actually at war with the U.S. A specific example of this dramatic irony is when the orphaned Albanian girl runs through a village of burning buildings to get to safety. This girl is actually an American actress who was hired by the producer to create footage from the war and demonstrate how Albania is being affected. The public believes that this footage is live from the war but in reality it is happening in a TV studio. This specific moment emphasizes the message that the movie is trying to get across, the American public will believe anything that they see in the news. The public is so naive that they believe anything that the government advertises as being true and anything that they see on TV and on the internet. The government made up a war and the public was convinced that people in Albania were dying, even though many people do not know where Albania is more much else about it.

The movie is a parody to today’s society because people still put a lot of trust in the media and believe everything they see in the news. Whatever the government says the people believe since Americans have a large sense of blind patriotism. The movie shows how political leaders can abuse their power and how the American public will not do anything about it. The media is able to exploit the opinion of the people and it is still happening toda

One thought on “Wait, There Was No War?


    I like how you tide in our society and the fact that we people all of our trust in the news and media and how alot of times they put out information that we should not take so serious.


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