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Osama Movie Essay

Decent Essays
The 2003 film “Osama” begins with a quote from Nelson Mandela, "I cannot forget, but I can forgive”. Set in in Afghanistan shortly before the fall of the Taliban in 2001, the film chronicles a young girl’s journey to find work in a time where women were not allowed outside the house without a male escort. This single line sets the tone for the rest of the film. But, in today’s unarguably interconnected international system, do more developed and “progressive” countries have the duty or even the right to establish international norms when it comes to the law and culture of other foreign states? Through the film’s ability to showcase the irrationality and inefficiency of laws that violate human rights, the lengths that Osama’s family was willing…show more content…
Cultures are created to dissipate the problems a society must face through elements like gender roles and etiquette. Cultures work well in this way because of hundreds, and often thousands, of years of maturation have created efficient systems, but, as the film shows, laws that violate human rights hardly ever work with efficiency. The difference between culture and the laws created by the Taliban were very powerfully shown in one of the scenes toward the end of the film. The exchange happens between two men during the judgement of a foreign journalist, accused of spying, a foreign nurse, accused of swearing, and Osama herself. When the foreign nurse is sentenced to death, one man leans toward the other and asks “where is the witness?” to which the response is “only God knows”. Though the Taliban claims to adhere to the Qu’ran, in reality they are only twisting it to their own ideals. This clearly shows that, while the guise of culture might hide human rights issues, it is very seldom the actual case that they are one and the
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