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Last Updated: Saturday, 24 July, 2004, 17:10 GMT 18:10 UK
Poles call 9/11 film 'propaganda'
Michael Moore
Polish MPs opposed to the war have urged people to see Moore's film
Michael Moore's contentious film Fahrenheit 9/11 has opened in Poland, with some film critics likening it to totalitarian propaganda.

Gazeta Wyborcza reviewer Jacek Szczerba called the film a "foul pamphlet".

He said it was too biased to be called a documentary and was similar to work by Nazi propaganda director Leni Riefenstahl.

But politicians opposed to Poland's involvement in the US-led occupation of Iraq have urged people to see the film.

"In criticising Moore, I have to admit that he has certain abilities - Leni Riefenstahl had them too," Mr Szczerba said in his review.

"Michael Moore will not convince Poles with his film," the Rzeczpospolita newspaper said in its review.

'A lot of truth'

"People are very sensitive to aggressive propaganda, especially when it pretends to be an objective documentary or a work of art."

The Polish government has supported the US-led operations in Iraq, and the Poles are in charge of a 6,200-strong force in southern Iraq. More than 2,000 Polish troops are currently serving in Iraq.

"The film contained some propaganda, but there was also a lot of truth in it," Pole Elzbieta Karwinska, 58, said after seeing the film.

"But I see no direct connection between the film and the Polish army in Iraq. I think that Poland is in Iraq for completely different reasons," she said.

This week, an Australian government minister described Moore as "the quintessential ugly American", after the film maker criticised the Australian prime minister's support of US President George Bush, saying: "What is John Howard doing in bed with an idiot?".


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