Lula’s imprisonment was U.S. project, Oliver Stone says at Cannes Film Festival

"They arrested Lula with Lava Jato, it was savage, a dirty affair," said Stone in Cannes for the premiere of his new documentary "JFK Revisited: Through the Looking Glass," on the death of U.S. President John Kennedy.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – The arrest of ex-president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva during Operation Lava Jato had behind it the United States government’s interest in destabilizing leftist Latin American leaders, 74-year-old American film director Oliver Stone said Wednesday, July 14.

According to the director, who is preparing a new film, in which the former President will be the main character and should be ready in the first half of 2022. “They arrested Lula with Lava Jato, it was savage, a dirty affair,” said Stone in Cannes for the premiere of his new documentary “JFK Revisited: Through the Looking Glass,” on the death of U.S. President John Kennedy. According to Stone, Lula’s conviction is a consequence of the U.S. design to patrol the world. “It’s tough, it’s an ongoing war that is happening,” he stated.

Oliver Stone. (Photo internet reproduction)
Oliver Stone. (Photo internet reproduction)

The filmmaker also said that American mainstream media deals biasedly with countries governed by the left, including Cuba, which is experiencing street protests and whose regime was praised by Lula on Tuesday.

“The mentality in the West now is completely anti-Russia, anti-China, anti-Iran, anti-Cuba, anti-Venezuela. You can’t say anything good about them. What else is on the list? In Brazil, Lula went to jail, they got rid of Lula. They police the world,” Stone said.

The director further claims that there is tremendous self-imposed censorship by the cultural industry. “My films were not financed by the United States, but by England. The big test will be if this new documentary does not come out in the United States.”

He says there is resistance in accepting the evidence of “JFK Revisited”. “My film shows that there was a coup d’état. The president of the United States was illegally removed from office and his successor reversed many decisions in foreign policy, including withdrawing from Vietnam.”

Stone says that American mainstream media also refuse to address the information he shows in his documentary. “Do you know what they’re going to say? That there’s nothing new, there’s no new information in the film. But there is plenty of new evidence. They’ve often tried to discredit me,” he said.

“JFK Revisited” is Stone’s second work on the November 22, 1963 events in Dallas. The first, 1991’s “JFK,” was nominated for eight Oscars, including best picture and best direction, and won for cinematography and editing.

In this first dramatization, prosecutor Jim Garrison, played by Kevin Costner, doubts the accounts presented for the crime and is met with resistance from the American government. Despite its success, the film was classified by many as a conspiracy theory.

The new script is based on a book about the assassination published in 2018 by author James Di Eugenio, following a decision by then-President Donald Trump to lift secrecy from over 3 million documents and 2,800 secret reports on the case.

The material yielded a four-hour documentary, halved for the festival presentation, and the version now sold to the European market. But, despite the new documents, some critics continued to question Stone’s version. He is considered biased after interviews with Cuba’s leader Fidel Castro, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, and Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

Stone claims he doesn’t hold the truth about what happened. Still, he can say that three government investigations conducted in different decades undermine the theory that Lee Harvey Oswald killed Kennedy.

Viewers must draw their own conclusions about who is to blame for the president’s death, but the facts point to the CIA, the U.S. intelligence agency, the American director says.

According to him, “Kennedy was the last president who really tried to change things, and it backfired.” Among the advances that attracted opposition, he recalls an opening in relations with Cuba, the negotiation of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty with the Soviet Union, and the intention to pull the United States out of the Vietnam War.

Historians and other experts who had access to the reports in the 1990s are interviewed on inconsistencies. “Photos were missing, there were many mistakes in the autopsy, they used a brain that wasn’t the president’s,” Stone says.

The filmmaker says he now hopes President Joe Biden will comply with the law and release some 200 documents considered the most crucial about the Kennedy assassination. They were due to have been released in April this year.


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