How Vulnerable is our Country? Looking into Olympus Has Fallen
By LeQuita C. Harrison
Many Americans believe that the United States is for the most part undefeatable. With our strong military base and fairly balanced government system and laws of many opportunities, it is hard to doubt our strength.
Throughout history we have fought our own battles into gaining our own independence and republic system and through the climb have helped many allies with their own. But when all else seems perfect there is still doubt of the country’s will in remaining the top power across the world.
With China and Korea being technically advanced and the United States owing debts that continue to rise, is it possible that this country is more vulnerable than it seems?
In the new movie Olympus Has Fallen, released on March 22, 2013, director Antoine Fuqua has a different perspective of America’s defense system. The movie takes place in our very own Washington, DC. The action pack thriller continues with a gruesome attack on the White House by a North Korean terrorist named Kang (Rick Yune). He ends up succeeding. Conquering the entire White House and killing hundreds while doing so. Unfortunately, President Benjamin Asher (Aaron Eckhart) was captured- in his own safe quarters- along with Melissa Leo portraying the Secretary of Defense and the Vice President. To the rescue was Mike Banning played by Gerard Butler. A once secret service agent, Banning returns to the White House and takes out each terrorist one by one, alone, until he saves the president and kill Yang.
The movie included a ton of violent gruesome scenes that one reviewer stated, “…as brash as a Super Bowl halftime show, bloodier than Gettysburg, and more far-fetched than Dennis Kucinich’s endless runs for President.” Katey Rich continued saying, “It is, in other words, very American.”
But what is America saying about itself? We find ourselves injecting our services on those in the eastern countries whether it’s for unnecessary gain or not. Take our war in Iraq. The reason we went to war was, “… because of the imminent threat of Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction and ties to terrorism,” says PBS Frontline. “Yet to date, no such weapons or ties have been revealed.” This war led to America trying to help them rebuild their defense system.
We should look at this like a disease. If a nation is weak on the inside it will in the long run affect its strength on the outside. America may be a country set on peacemaking but this movie acknowledges the need to look at our own government and defense, how we treat our own people, and how well prepared the citizens are incase an invasion does occur.
After watching the movie Tylvia Koromah was asked how did this movie make you feel about America’s security and defense system against invaders? She replied, “I think that it illustrated that there are terrorists who are always looking for ways to destroy America. There are groups of people throughout the world who have missions to destroy the white house, which is the central power of this county.”
In one article called The Department of Defense is Not About Defense, acknowledges that, “…no nation on earth has the military capability, the money, or even the interest in successfully invading and occupying the United States.” And explains how the Department of Defense uses their time to help other nations with their own.
Although, Olympus Has Fallen was only a depiction of what can occur if an invasion could happen, it cannot help but leave their audience thinking. Take the scene of the gunfight in front of the White House and the North Korean terrorist’s bravery in taking over the American airway. An invader may not be able to hold out for too long once our defense is set free but if the country’s head representative is taken hostage by a plan we could not see, how weak are the defenses then?
As Banning continued his search for the president, the Speaker of the House (Morgan Freeman) taking the role as Acting President, sat weary and stressful in the Pentagon wandering what they should do. Their time soon runs out as Yang executes one person at a time until they have the information they need to destroy America.
They soon come to an agreement to let Yang have what he wants for the exchange and safety of the president. The viewers and the characters wandered what they were going to do after the president was safe only to see their opportunity to rescue him was impossible, realizing they couldn’t identify him amongst the masks approaching the helicopter. Time warped down to nothing at this point as the activated nuclear bombs located in almost every state was about to deploy.
This part exposed how vulnerable America’s defense may be when they think too much about rescuing the president than protecting the entire country. Although, both are a high priority, this movie gave the impression that when all gets ruff our representative is more important than the country wiping itself clean with its own nuclear bombs. Good thing this movie relied on one man to end it all or the ending wouldn’t have been too pleasing.
God forbid anything like this happening, Olympus Has Fallen continues to keep people thinking. The movie hit up to 70 million dollars in budget since its release. It exposed the possible vulnerability of America’s defense system when America’s ego has reached its last point.
LeQuita C. Harrison. 4/22/2013