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British Playwright Harold Pinter Dies at 78

Posted on Dec 25, 2008
Harold Pinter

The theater world lost one of its brightest lights on Christmas Eve with the death of playwright Harold Pinter. The 78-year-old British Nobel Prize winner, whose best-known plays included “The Homecoming” and “The Birthday Party,” succumbed to throat cancer on Wednesday.

Los Angeles Times:

In recent years Pinter had dedicated himself to political activism, frequently turning his attention to the U.S. On the eve of the Iraq War, he called the George W. Bush administration a “monster out of control.” After the war began, Pinter said U.S. policies were “beyond reason” and compared them to those of Nazi Germany. His attacks alienated some who thought that great playwrights needn’t be politically outspoken.

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By davidperi, December 30, 2008 at 10:45 am Link to this comment  has in today broadcast Pinter´s address when he received Nobel Award in 2005.  Interesting piece.

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By eileen fleming, December 28, 2008 at 5:19 am Link to this comment

In Red Pepper Magazine 1996, Harold Pinter wrote:

“There is the question of human rights. I myself don’t believe in the relativity of human rights. I don’t believe that ‘local conditions’, as it were, or a specific cultural disposition can justify suppression of dissent or the individual conscience.

“In Cuba I have always understood harsh treatment of dissenting voices as stemming from a ‘siege situation’ imposed upon it from outside. And I believe that to a certain extent that is true.

“But equally apologists for Israeli actions have also stressed a siege situation brought about by external threat. Mordechai Vanunu is a dissenting voice in Israel and was sentenced to 18 years solitary confinement for disclosing Israel’s nuclear capacity to the world.”

Vanunu remains captive in Jerusalem denied the right to speak to any foreigners-but he does!

Vanunu has been sentenced to 3 more months in jail for interviews he gave in 2004.

2005, 2006, 2008 video interviews with Vanunu and reports of historic FREEDOM of SPEECH Trial in Israel @ VANUNU ARCHIVES

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By uglyfemale, December 27, 2008 at 11:37 am Link to this comment
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She is just as deserving of an obituary on Truthdig than MR. Pinter.  She challenged Lady Bird Johnson on her husband’s Vietnam policies AT THE HEIGHT OF HER CAREER!!! She had to leave AmeriKKKA for a decade because of her statements. Forty years later, black Americans STILL can’t freely speak their minds.

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By Stephen Smoliar, December 26, 2008 at 2:38 pm Link to this comment

The only thing more gratifying than an obituary for one who spoke truth to power is a second obituary about another such speaker:

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By thebeerdoctor, December 26, 2008 at 9:07 am Link to this comment

Harold Pinter used the occasion of his acceptance speech for the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2005 to point out in unflinching terms the hypocrisy of United States imperialism, with the docile acceptance of his own country Britain, along for the ride. “The United States is the greatest show on the road,” he said, noting the many atrocities committed in the name of spreading “democracy”.
“How did you know that the dead body was dead?”

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