Outcry over Iraq war video game

By politics.co.uk staff

Games publisher Konami is facing an outcry from military personnel and those who have lost family in Iraq after announcing a video game set in the conflict.

The game – Six Days in Fallujah – is based on the famous battle of war, and one which many observers believe saw the use of white phosphorous by American forces.

The battle cost the lives of 38 soldiers and 1,200 insurgents.

Tim Collins, a former colonel of the First Battalion Royal Irish Regiment, told the Telegraph he was appalled by the game’s setting.

“It’s much too soon to start making video games about a war that’s still going on, and an extremely flippant response to one of the most important events in modern history,” he said.

“It’s particularly insensitive given what happened in Fallujah, and I will certainly oppose the release of this game.”

Reg Keys, whose son was killed by an Iraqi mob in June 2003, commented: “Considering the enormous loss of life in the Iraq war, glorifying it in a video game demonstrates very poor judgement and bad taste.

“It is particularly crass when you consider what actually happened in Fallujah. These horrific events should be confined to the annuls of history, not trivialised and rendered for thrill-seekers to play out, over and over again, for ever more.

“It’s entirely possible that Muslim families will buy the game, and for them it may prove particularly harrowing. Even worse, it could end up in the hands of a fanatical young Muslim and incite him to consider some form of retaliation or retribution. He could use it to get worked up and want to really ‘finish the game’.

“I will be calling for this game to be banned, if not worldwide then certainly in the UK.”

Although Atomic Games, who are developing the game, will intersperse the action with interviews with marines, they promise the game will be an impartial account of events in the town.

“Our goal is to give people that insight, of what it’s like to be a marine during that event, what it’s like to be a civilian in the city and what it’s like to be an insurgent,” Atomic Games president Peter Tamte told the Wall Street Journal.

Previous video games have been set in the Middle East, but this is the first to grapple with a real life incident, especially one which occurred so recently.