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Theatre of War

Stories and News No. 1262

No, this is not a tribute to Mario Martone's beautiful film, despite some similarities between the siege of Sarajevo by the Yugoslav and Bosnian Serb forces and what is happening in Ukraine.
On the contrary, it is the story of a much larger theater and with a much longer program over time than a movie or its plot.
In some ways, we could define it as the theater par excellence, thinking in terms of history or even just a representation of the latter, as it has always staged the same show. It is inevitable since the only alternative to the topic of such a narrative is the travel. And since the world began, you should live the latter in first person or it really means that you have never moved from your chair.
However, it does not matter if you remain motionless to watch, since that is the way you are influencing the piece and each of its characters the most.
I'm talking about the war. Almost everyone in Europe talks about it these days. We do. As if we were sitting in a theater between the acts of the staging, an often misleading expression, which does not imply that it necessarily concerns something fake and harmless. Hamlet's infamous uncle and all those who have been struck and thrown from their undeserved pedestal by the courageous and honest dramatization of things know something about it.
Now, tragic coincidence tells us that a real theater earned the temporary front page of the newspapers, in the current contingency chorally concentrated on the Russian invasion: the Theater of Dramatic Art of the Donetsk Oblast, in Mariupol.
According to reports from the Ukrainian authorities, before the bombing yesterday, more than a thousand civilians, mainly women and children, had sought refuge there and currently there is still no precise information on how many people were killed.
Unfortunately for all of us, especially the most vulnerable and innocent among us, such dire events are an integral part of the aforementioned spectacle, which from era to era, place to place, with the updating of costumes, sets and armaments, that is staged at every beginning of the year. And when you hope to finally be able to see this foul script banned from any programming, you see it there together with the others with its bloody poster. As if it were a normal, habitual and inevitable story.
Yet the Pope is right when he says that those who pay the bill for the war are always the people, referring to the victims, civilians or not, of each side. But in my humble opinion this statement can also be seen from the opposite angle.
That is, it should be seen this way.
Because despite the changes in the sharing and representation of news due to the continuous technological advances and the progress of the modalities of connection between us, whether it is a real theater, rather than the screen of the cinema, TV, computer or mobile phone, two things have never changed and will remain the same: the war spectacle and the spectators in their place, with wide eyes and "o" shaped mouths scared, horrified and sometimes even excited.
In a word, the public.
In a word and an adjective that says it all, the paying public.
An audience that pays for every show, also when he goes to the streets for peace protests and puts colored flags on the social status one day and another he votes, forgetting who in turn sold their soul for weapons lobbies’ money and who said no despite the yes manifesto being more convenient.
When is moved more by the editing of the harrowing images and the background music than the tragedy itself, and then demonstrates with the facts that the concept of solidarity towards the refugees as the foundation of a civilized country does not really know what it means.
When it should be an alternative to the traditionally militarized and warmongering right parties and then manages to insert words such as weapons and moral necessity into the same sentence.
When he does not understand that what we should bring into our lives, to build present and future together, are not nations but human beings, period, no ifs, buts, EU, NATO and other excuses.
When he fails to understand that there is only one kind of empathy between us and it is towards every human being, otherwise it is all a farce even from the audience point of view, in an even more bitter fake than on stage.
Nonetheless, I feel the need for a correction, however desired with the mere purpose of reaching the following conclusion, despite having very little faith in it: the presence of the paying public does not necessarily have to remain the same forever.
Any of us, at any time, could get up from their chairs, perhaps inviting others to do the same and leave the room to begin with. Because without the public and especially its money, the War is the only show that has never been staged.

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