Terrorist group issues threat against Bruno’s Cohen for using their name

Sacha Baron Cohen
Yesterday we heard that a supposed “terrorist” briefly interviewed in the new Bruno film wasn’t a terrorist at all and claims he was misled into thinking that he would be interviewed by a German filmmaker trying to shed light on the situation in Palestine. (Documentaries and educational films are very popular on German television and this undoubtedly seemed like a legitimate request.) When Cohen brought up Osama Bin Laden, the “terrorist”/Palestinian rights organizer got offended and told him to leave. Now that the film is out, the guy is very upset and says that his image was misused and that he may sue.

Not only is the guy featured in the movie offended, the terrorist organization that Cohen incorrectly claimed he belonged to, Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, has issued a pretty scary statement saying that the film was a conspiracy against them and that “We reserve the right to respond in the way we find suitable against this man.” Uh-oh:

The Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, the terrorist group depicted in the film “Bruno,” is “very upset” their group’s namesake and former member was featured in a film about a homosexual character that includes graphic depictions of homosexual sex.

The group, as well as individual members, released a statement to WND that includes a veiled threat against the movie’s star, Sacha Baron Cohen:

“We reserve the right to respond in the way we find suitable against this man (Cohen)” said the statement.

“This movie was part of a conspiracy against the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades,” continued the statement, released through a senior member of the group in the West Bank.

“According to what we checked there was no meeting about the real context of the film. This was a dirty use of our brother, Aiman, and we don’t accept that the name of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades is part of the film.”

Aiman is a reference to Ayman Abu Aita, who was interviewed in the movie “Bruno” and labeled as a “terrorist leader” from the Brigades division in the West Bank city of Bethlehem. Aita told WND yesterday the movie mislabels him and that Cohen conducted the interview under false pretenses. Aita said he is pursuing legal action against Cohen.

The Brigades statement claimed that “Aiman is part of the political level of Fatah in Bethlehem, part of the leadership of the political apparatus of Fatah. He is not a member of the Brigades.”

The Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades is the declared military wing of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’ U.S.-backed Fatah party. The Brigades is responsible for scores of suicide bombings, shootings and deadly rocket attacks against Israeli civilian population centers.

Several Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades leaders responded to the use of their group in the “Bruno” movie.

Abu Philistine, the current leader of the Brigades in Aita’s hometown of Bethlehem, told WND, “This was a trick against Aiman. We don’t want to be part of this movie”

Jihad Jaara, the infamous exiled chief of the Brigades in Bethlehem, called Cohen “not funny” and said his film was “stupid.”

“I’d like to tell Cohen if you like to be funny you are not. You showed the world how stupid is this film,” Jaara told WND. “We don’t need for Cohen to show us to the world in a homosexual film. That made us very angry at him.”

Continued Jaara: “If he wants to make a real film, then come to the Palestinian territories and see how children are dying every day at the hands of the Israeli occupation.

“I heard about this film and I felt very shamed when I heard about it,” added Jaara.

Jaara was the notorious director of the 2002 siege of Bethlehem’s Church of the Nativity who served as the Bethlehem-area chief of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terrorist organization during that time.

Many senior Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades leaders were granted amnesty by Israel in 2007 in an American-brokered gesture to bolster Abbas. The group, therefore, could not release an official pamphlet against the movie since the Brigades has not been releasing pamphlets. Also, some Brigades leaders warned that Abbas’ Fatah party may try to distance itself publicly from the statements against Cohen.

[From WND.com]

I saw Bruno this weekend, and I can’t remember if Cohen specifically mentioned that group in the film. He did bring up their name in an interview on Letterman last week though, and it’s pretty likely he claimed that the guy he interviewed was in the group, especially considering how seriously they’re responding. You don’t want to piss off a group of suicide bombers! The film could have been just as funny without that scene, and they probably should have cut it. It must have been a huge expense to go to the Middle East and they didn’t have much else to fill out that part of the story, though.

The film was really raunchy, and included several scenes of jaw-dropping, offensively portrayed gay sex along with real straight sex (with bars to block the naughty bits, but it was clear what was going on) and full frontal male nudity. Just about anyone could conceivably be upset to be associated with that film. It’s also not for kids or teens at all. Universal wants to make sure they maximize ticket sales and have cut three scenes to a offer a new teen-friendly UK version of Bruno in order to score a “15″ rating. The original film has an adults-only “18″ rating. There are at least four scenes that I can remember that should really be cut to sanitize it, but many people would argue that no version of the film is appropriate for under-18. It’s obnoxious through and through, and that’s why it’s so successful.

Cohen is shown at the LA premiere of Bruno on 6/25/09. Credit: PRPhotos

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16 Responses to “Terrorist group issues threat against Bruno’s Cohen for using their name”

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  1. Miss Thang says:

    I really felt like it was overdone. The sex scenes seemed really gratuitous and completely unecessary. They didn’t help the plot of the story at all, and I didn’t think they were funny. I really like his humor, and I love the way he turns situations on their noses, but the sex stuff really just doesn’t fit in. I’m not sure where he’s going with all that.
    I believe the terrorist organization was listed on the screen under the man’s name. He’s crazy for doing that! I guess that’s what makes him, though.

  2. wow says:

    When will this guy’s 15 minutes be up? He bugs.

  3. Jen says:

    God forbid we upset the terrorists and hurt their feelings!

    Give me a break. They’re terrorists. F*ck ‘em.

  4. KRD says:

    I agree. when will this guy be gone? bruno had a big weekend and supposedly has no legs to stand on after that. My theater locally isn’t giving refunds for people that walk out before its over. That’s not a good sign.

  5. Tazina says:

    I could care less what happens to this tool “Bruno”. I hope this is the last movie he makes. I can’t believe people would actually pay money or rent this POS excuse for entertainment.

  6. DD says:

    I must say Cohen has balls including material about terrorist groups. They don’t play by the same rules as the rest of society.

  7. C says:

    I saw Bruno on Sat. The movie was shocking, obnoxious, offensive and roll on the floor laughing funny. The sex scenes were not meant to be real by any stretch of the imagination. The terrorist scene was pretty ballsy – not sure why he even attempted that. But overall I thought it was hilarious and worth the $12 I paid to see it (and the $30 in beer to make me cringe less).

  8. lisa says:

    I wouldn’t wish violence on anyone, but isn’t this like putting your head in the lion’s cage? They don’t call them terrorists because they are warm and fuzzy. This guy is an idiot. Not everything is a joke.

  9. RubySlippers says:

    Someone needs to put an end to this madness! He is annoying already.

  10. mags says:

    i think it’s telling that it’s not that the terrorists have a problem with the whole movie, or bruno or how they’re portrayed. it’s that it’s a ‘homosexual film’. what are they going to get teased by the other terrorist groups?

  11. Trillion says:

    Naturally, many many people are offended by SBC. The rest of us are grinning madly replaying scenes from his packed, brilliant career. Fucking awesome. But I do want to thank everyone who hates him, because you are, willingly or otherwise, a crucial element to his act.

  12. Sarah says:

    Yeah right. Showing openly straight or gay sex on screen is definitely way more upsetting and offensive than the maximized brutality and gore in the Terminator or Die Hard franchises (All of them have a MPAA rating of R, except for Die Hard 4, that went with PG 13(!), yes, you’ve read right!!). I totally see it. I just wonder when was the last time I killed somebody with having sex??

    Let’s go with the hippies: Make love, not war! At least rate it even.

  13. MarkS- Jupiter FL says:

    What will really be interesting to see is how all of those “brave” celebrities forever “speaking truth to power” react to the threat. It’s easy enough to proclaim your courage when making one more tiresome rehash of the wicked McCarthy era or droning on about the backwardness of your countrymen because they support Prop. 8 but quite another to stand up to the brutes whose only debate about gays is how they should be killed. Cohen and like minded celebri-tards are about to learn a real lesson in tolerance and where it is to be found. Tweaking unsuspecting westerners for laughs gets you criticized sure enough but offending certain 7th century cultures gets your throat cut. And all it takes for a gay to offend them is to exist, yet alone insult them. Now we’ll see how truly courageous our deep thinkers are. I bet few to none of our shallow celebrities makes a peep. Any takers?

  14. Trillion says:

    I think he’s totally taking a piss out of them and diminishing whatever ultra-conservative macho estupido power they think they have. So bravo. In their face.

  15. MarkS- Jupiter FL says:

    Really? Wow, playing deceptive tricks on unsuspecting people, however loathsome, “diminishes their power”? Who knew? Since he didn’t actually test their power that seems like a shaky assertion. How about he forthrightly walks down a street in a Muslim city, sans camera and entourage, holding hands and camping it up with one of his lovers like gays making a statement in the US do? THAT would be “in their face”. And what do you suppose the outcome of a stunt like that would be? A few mean stares and cruel words like here or something a little more, ah, substantive? My earlier point is that modern, western celebrities are not “brave” nor “courageous” in any meaningful way. Stay tuned and you shall see. If the threat seems real Cohen will apologize, remove the reference from his film or make some noises about those Jews being the cause of all the problems, anything to appease Al Aqsa. Likewise, you have not heard nor will you hear any “brave” celebrity come to his, and their vaunted “freedom of expression’s”, defense in this matter just as they did not in defense of Salmon Rushdie 20 years ago or Theo Van Gogh a few years back. You remember Theo, no? The gay Dutch grandson of Van Gogh and filmmaker who was slaughtered in the street for making a short about Islam’s oppression of women? Our stalwart celebrities couldn’t even acknowledge him, yet alone defend or praise him, at the Academy Awards or any other venue. They were too busy applauding each other for their “courage” in one more tedious, lying tale about McCarthyism or Tim Robbin’s parodic decrying of his oppression from the podium of the National Press Club. They do not want to catch the madman’s eye. They are only brave when making fun and tearing down their countrymen where they are safe to do so, because it is only in western culture they ARE safe to do so, but in the face of real oppression and persecution they are cowards. Our “celebrities” are phonies and exploiters, the biggest our society produces and Cohen is just the latest and crudest.

  16. I laughed from the beginning to the end, Bruno was outragious!