We're lucky here in the United States. There hasn't been a war fought on American soil in more than 145 years. We've been distanced, protected, and made safe from the fear and horrors of war, especially from the possibility of having one in our own backyard.
When you go home tonight, turn on one of our Big 4 TV news networks and see how much coverage is actually dedicated to any of the ongoing struggles happening beyond our borders. In the United States, we have helped support and create a government and a media machine that puts us in a bubble, reinforces a xenophobic view of the world, and puts all of our troubles "out of sight and out of mind."
But all that stops in DMZ - and I find that to be the bravest and most important part of this revolutionary series.
Insurgencies. Suicide bombers. Nuclear Armed States. These are all scary scenarios that could be ripped each day from the world's top stories, but in the hands of Brian Wood, they create something much more frightening.
Rogue nations, outspoken dictators, private contractors and heartless mercenaries all find a place in the pages of DMZ. They open our eyes and our ears to events that, while fictional in the frames of this groundbreaking creation, are links in the chains of our global existence. Each story, each character and each page is undeniably tied to the world in which we live, and for me that is DMZ's greatest triumph.
It would be easy to continue to go through life with blinders on to shield us from the ugly truths that, to this day, still send brave men and women to fight overseas. Soldiers, who we're told, are fighting "over there" so we won't have to here. By the time this hits the newsstands, more than 2,000,000 Americans will have fought either in Iraq or Afghanistan Š a number that makes the stories of DMZ all the more terrifying, all the more plausible and all the more realistic.
What these books also do, especially the series that you are about to read, is bring into question the influence and power of hope. DMZ, like our own world, has been overshadowed with the beliefs that certain men and women, when given the chance, would reshape the course of human history. They would right the wrongs that had come before them and cut a clear path toward harmony. Citizens put their faith in these outspoken people, and now, as tensions mount both here and on the world¹s stage, we all stand poised to see if they will rise to the challenge we have given them, or if Icarus will fall to the ground.
When you read "No Future" and "Hearts and Minds," you will unquestionably draw parallels to questions in your own life, but what I hope happens more than anything else, is that in some small way, you actually start to find some answers.
--Morgan Spurlock, documentary filmmaker (Super Size Me), television producer and screenwriter
DMZ Volume 8: Hearts and Minds is on sale next Wednesday!