spielberg.jpgIn order to counteract a raft of pre-release bad publicity, Steven Spielberg has hired Eyal Arad, an aid to Israeli Prime Minsiter Ariel Sharon, to promote his film Munich to Israelis. Spielberg's been getting it from various ends for months for the allegedly questionable source materials on which Munich is based, and those attacks have only increased in recent weeks as various pundits have seen the film, and others have come out of the woodworks to make semi-informed contributions to the discourse. A typical criticism of Munich comes from Avi Dichter, the retired head of Israel's Shin Bet intelligence service, who compared the film to a children's adventure story. "There is no comparison between what you see in the movie and how it works in reality," he said after attending a screening in Washington.

Arad is already combatting such criticism by showing Munich to deeply interested parties – he hosted a screening for two of the widows of the athletes killed in the events that inspired the film. One of the widows, Ilana Romano,  was satisfied with the film, saying she felt it did "no dishonour to the memory of the murdered athletes, nor to the image of the state of Israel," and noting that if Spielberg really wanted to attack the state, he would have depicted Israeli's botched retaliation attempt, which involved the killing of an innocent, uninvolved man in Norway. "Had Spielberg wanted to harm Israel's image, he would have included the Lillehammer affair," Romano told reporters. "Don't let's over-analyse Spielberg's film." Um, sorry Ilana, but over-analysis? Sort of our job.