Movies from one’s adolescence are ones that tend to stick in one’s mind. Before the responsibilities of work, family and community fill up the receptive sponge of the human memory.
One of my favourites was the original STAR WARS from 1977. It was classic Hollywood formula of the good guys versus the bad guys, but fought out in some far, far away intergalactic battlefield.
The director George Lucas went on to create one of the most valuable franchises in movie history, with sequels and prequels to flesh out the story, but always with the same battle against the nihilists. I would never have imagined that I would consider George Lucas a modern-day prophet.
The story of the Death Star is an artificial planet that is constructed to look like a planet from afar but is basically a killing machine.
The Death Star is staffed (note: I avoid the use of manned) by storm troopers – some sort of demonic robots who are programmed to kill and carry out the emperor’s orders. The Death Star also packs the most powerful laser, whose sole purpose is to destroy complete planets and their inhabitants with a concentrated beam of energy.
The idea of such wickedness was of course pure fantasy, and yet to see it actualised today in 2023 has shocked the world. Gaza, which from afar pretends at normality, hides beneath its surface a veritable death star. Its sole purpose to destroy Israel. The powerful laser is mimicked by the thousands of missiles aimed at humanity. Like the movie, where the goodies have to rely on force fields to prevent the penetration of the laser, Israel is relying on the Iron Dome defence, but make no mistake the missiles are deadly and continue being fired till today, more than a week since Israel started hitting Hamas sites in Gaza. The storm troopers who have been programmed to kill are today represented by the Hamas terrorists, who have been similarly programmed to wreak carnage and brutality never before seen so vividly, and proudly shared on social media.
Luke Skywalker, the hero of the film, is dispatched to enter the Death Star, and fights off the enemies in a narrow channel that runs around the Death Star – reminiscent of the myriad terror tunnels that encircle Gaza.
Eventually the Death Star is destroyed, but the emperor lives on – he’s far out of reach. Much like Ismail Haniyeh and the Hamas leadership who are sitting pretty in Qatar, or like their puppet-masters, the Iranian regime, far away in Tehran. There are even physical similarities between the Emperor, robed in black, sitting on his throne, and the Ayatollah Khamenei. The Empire does strike back, and so does this nihilist mindset. The death toll in this century has been enormous, millions in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon, Libya, and of course Israel.
It goes on many sequels later till the Empire is finally defeated. Let’s pray that the forces of good will overcome, and deal once and for all with the forces of destruction.
Humanity was formed with unique characteristics that allow it to mimic the Almighty’s desire to create. The nihilism of the Islamists are anathema to this. To destroy instead of create. That’s why eventually, we will see it defeated.