Beirut story

This stunned me this morning from Stanley Moss of diganzi and Medinge. Look carefully at the yellow strip of the second picture – “The Divine Victory” is obviously someone (Hezbollah being the most obvious candidate) branding the conflict. And using every competitive action to reinforce the cause in subtle ways.

anti US Beirut propaganda

Beirut yellow strip

But the piece that resonates most for me is the first image. As soon as you read “Made in the USA”, there’s a story that emerges almost instantaneously in the mind of the viewer. There may be twists depending on your slant, but that simple juxtaposition generates an imagined causality chain immediately. And it’s that causality – and the inferred reasoning behind it – that is at the core of the brand.

It’s a subtle illustration of something that was shown more bluntly in last night’s BBC Newsnight:

Gaza We are planning to lead tonight on a film from Gaza which provides a shocking insight into the minds of Palestinian children growing up in the shadow of the cult of martyrdom. Paul Martin meets young boys intent on becoming “Shahid” – a martyr for the cause. With the seeds of hatred planted at such a young age what are the chances of peace in this troubled region ?

For all the rhetoric about the military approach, it misses the fact that the myths, legends, stories and heroes on one side are deeply rooted in their being attacked by US/Israel – and are just reinforced time and again. So the old stories and patterns are confirmed – and these children have an in-built brand story that ends in their death for the cause. Wow.