Jean Claude talks about Iraq

March 11, 2003

Jean Claude van Damme is fighting mad at anti-war celebrities like Madonna, Martin Sheen and George Clooney – and he’s speaking out about it exclusively to Globe. Here are parts of the globe-article, which was written by Robin Mizrahi.

“President George Bush had it completely right when he singled out Saddam Hussein as part of axis of evil.” tough guy Van Damme tells us. “And some of those in Hollywood are part of that axis of ignorance! The 42-year-old Muscles from Brussels, who emigrated to the States from Belgium 20 years ago, is particularly incensed with Madonna. The Material Girl’s latest video spouts a strong anti-war message, showing her dressed in military fatigues and throwing grenades in a landscape of bloody babies and limbless adults. “To use George Bush and the Iraqi people as a publicity stunt is disgusting.” he blasts. “She should realize that in the Middle East they think of her as less than human – she’d be stoned to death there. So why is she defending them?”

”George is right about innocent lives being lost – but some lives lost now will save whole future generations,” Van Damme explains. “How many more towers and lives do Americans have to lose before George realizes that regimes like Saddam’s are evil and must be destroyed?”

He also blasts peaceniks Barbra Streisand, Ed Asner and Jessica Lange. “They are entitled to their opinions,” he says. “But don’t they know their opinions would be squashed in Iraq for speaking out against the government? Then let’s see how they would react!” ”Having a peaceful Richard Gere Buddhist-type of philosophy is lost against a criminal madman like Saddam,” says van Dame, who’s established a foundation to supply humanitarian aid for the children of Iraq.

Van Damme knows his opinion may get him blacklisted in the overwhelmingly anti-Bush Tinseltown community but he still “feels compelled” to speak his mind. “I just don’t understand why Saddam has so much support in Hollywood,” he says. “This is a man who denies ties to terrorists but sends money to the families of every Palestinian suicide bomber. The terrorists need to love their children more and hate us less.”

”I cried when I saw the Word Trade Center towers collapse on TV. It made me realize how much I love America. And now it angers me when I see Americans rail against this great country. Hollywood exports the American Dream – freedom. They should live it or leave it!” ”Every man, woman and child is entitled to freedom. Let’s not let our soldiers go off to war hearing that their favorite big- and small-screen heroes are not behind them.”

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