Powered by WebAds

Sunday, July 20, 2008

'Virtual Jihad' game on display in Chicago; Object: Kill Bush

A video game called 'Virtual Jihadi' is on display at a 'free-speech' exhibit in Chicago. The game, called "The Night of Bush Capturing; A Virtual Jihadi" challenges players to kill American President George W. Bush.
The game originally was scheduled to be shown at a New York state college but was banned by administrator after less than a day. One person at the exhibit said, "The game itself is not an act of terrorism, but it simply promotes it."
That college was in Troy, New York. The Chicago Tribune had a story about the game's creator three weeks ago:
Born in Iraq, 41-year-old artist Wafaa Bilal was arrested several times for his work by the regime of Saddam Hussein before refusing to serve in the Iraqi army and fleeing the country during the Persian Gulf War. He was in refugee camps in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia before being granted asylum in the United States in 1992. He received an undergraduate degree from the University of New Mexico and a master's degree from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he teaches. He will leave our city the last week of July to become an assistant professor at New York University.


His latest piece, "Virtual Jihadi," was closed down twice last March in Troy, N.Y. Its basis was the 2003 American video game "Quest for Saddam," which was recast by a group associated with Al Qaeda as "The Night of Bush Capturing." Bilal, in turn, hacked into that game, inserting himself as a suicide bomber who had been recruited after the death of his brother to kill President Bush. Bilal thinks of the piece as a "communications strategy" that addresses the detachment, violence and racism of video games, continuing strife in Iraq and the vulnerability of Iraqis to becoming involved with Al Qaeda.

The work will be on view at Flatfile galleries, 217 N. Carpenter St., through Aug. 22. Call 312-491-1190.
I'm sure all my Chicago readers will be rushing out to see it.



At 2:16 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

I'm sure that's also what Palestinian video game players do in the two reichlets. The only problem is jihadist fantasy more than often than not is made reality by them.


Post a Comment

<< Home