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Postby ESO2017 » Mon Jan 08, 2018 7:07 am

Forgive buy cheap wow gold me, but I am going to start at the end. I am sitting in a dark movie theater in Damascus, Syria. It is October 30 and This Is It, the Michael Jackson movie slash valediction, has just opened worldwide. In 24 hours, I will fly home to New York, after a month in the Middle East reporting on the Iraqi refugee crisis on the terrifying past, miserable present, and uncertain future of the estimated two million people who have fled the war. Right now, though, nine of those two million people are sitting next to me: my friend Z., who invited me to the movies, plus eight of his pals. Chronologically, they are just kids, college age or slightly older say, 19 to 25. Measured by life experience, they have nine or ten light years on me.
To me, it sounds like the Iraqi national anthem. For them, though well, I hesitate to make too much of it. Part of Michael's beauty, after all, was just beauty. Thriller was brilliant when it came out, so brilliant that it did not age into campiness. Nor did its creator. Even at fifty, he could sing with the best of them, and dance everybody else into the ground.
Still, Michael Jackson's particular brand of genius had the fairy dust of American possibility and prosperity shining all over. Did he speak to the dispossessed, with his corny yet sincere bid to "Heal the World," and his indisputably successful bid to rule it? Of course. Ask Marjane Satrapi of Iran, or Helene Cooper of Liberia, both of whom have written movingly about their childhood obsessions with Jackson, that strange, single gloved beacon of hope in dark times. And they are hardly alone. As a diehard Nabokov fan, it pains me slightly to say this, but for every five people who have read Lolita in Tehran (or in any other oppressive locale on earth) roughly a billion have tried, in the privacy of their own rooms, to master the moonwalk.
That is why let's face it Michael Jackson probably did more than anyone else in his lifetime to enhance America's image overseas. Granted, a plausible rival has recently emerged, in the form of another kinda black kinda white guy who has lately come in for some serious global fame. But the jury is still out on that one. Not so Michael Jackson, King to Obama's president. Part of his allure was the way he threaded together the two great American fantasies: universal brotherhood (It don't matter if you're black or white) and collective progress through individual improvement (If you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make that change). His ethos was our national one: just give a guy a fighting chance.
It's not perfect, but it is something. And it is, unquestionably, every refugee's dream. Watching This Is It in Damascus, next to my tough, sweet, somehow surviving Iraqi friends, it was impossible not to think that this is some of what they saw: Michael Jackson as (I think he'd appreciate the comparison) Lady Liberty.
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