Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

June 14, 2012

The story of our flag: 1938 version

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Christopher Bellavita on June 14, 2012

Today is Flag Day.

Here is a link to a 10 minute video created in 1938 that, according to the website:

Follows the evolution of the flag of the United States from the colonial flags to the stars and stripes of today. Shows by animation the development of the western territories into the present states and how this development effected changes in the flag.

I can’t say much about the film’s historical accuracy. But it has a few homeland security harbingers: a justification for protecting critical transportation infrastructure against attacks (by people who thought they owned the land), and a boast that we didn’t need to protect out borders.

(I think I saw this film in 9th grade, shortly after my classroom got electricity.   Kasia Cieplak-Mayr Von Baldegg’s work reminded me of the film.)

President Wilson signed the Flag Day authorization in 1916, when the flag looked like this:

“All hail the flag of the United States of America,” says the narrator as the film come to its end.

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2 Comments »

Comment by William R. Cumming

June 15, 2012 @ 4:21 am

Thanks Chris for this reminder!

Comment by Django

June 17, 2012 @ 12:23 am

One word…corny.

Now a few more…

New tag line: Homeland Security: A Matter of Precaution.

The chains across the country was an unsettling image.

George Bush must have watched this as part of his curriculum in hubris.

Use of the phrase “empire builders.”

Natives portrayed as just running around in their “happy hunting ground” not the US invading their sovereign nations.

Space imagery…continual references to constellations and(of course)stars. JFK must have been paying close attention.

Wonderful piece of propaganda…I’m sure many across the country would not recognize its aged veneer if it was played during an episode of American Idol.

The thing is…we all still buy this crap. The western expansion was manifest destiny was let’s use a religious invocation to invade a sovereign nation.

The problem is…we have not stopped. Not good bad right or wrong…just a complex series of unintended consequences based on an assumption/policy that the US is somehow better than the rest of the world.

And here we are…surprised?

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