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Suicide Bombers Focus of Doc

18 Apr, 2006 By: Jessica Wolf

Since the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, and the subsequent wars in Afghanistan and Iraq the term “suicide bomber” has become a part of the American cultural lexicon.

With would-be 9/11 bomber Zacarias Moussaoui fully ensconced in the defense phase of his trial, a big-screen version of the events of that day, United 93, set to hit theaters April 28, and a made-for-TV version, Flight 93, hitting the pipeline, American thoughts are likely to turn to the question, “why.”

For answers, or at least a new perspective, The Disinformation Company June 27 releases The Cult of the Suicide Bomber on DVD ($19.95).

This compelling documentary follows former CIA Agent Robert Baer (the agent upon whom George Clooney's character in Syriana is based) returns to his area of specialty, the Middle East, to trace the origins of the modern-day suicide bomber from the Iran-Iraq war to the streets of these countries today.

The film tells the story of the world's first known suicide bomber, a 13-year-old named Hossein Fahmideh, who rose up during the Iran-Iraq war and is praised as an Iranian hero.

The filmmakers visit sites foreign to the vast majority of Americans, both in location and in philosophy — places like Tehran's “Graveyard of Martyrs,” where Fahmideh's grave is bedecked with mementos.

The doc also shows never-before-seen footage of videotaped suicide letters.

The film will get a short run in theaters in June and immediately be available on DVD.

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