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June 29, 2007

A Single Spark Can Start a Prairie Fire

I've justed been alerted to the consequences of Cameron Diaz's encounter with anti-revisionist ideology and/or radical chic. This happened a week ago:

The voice of Princess Fiona in the animated "Shrek" films visited the Incan city of Machu Picchu in Peru's Andes on Friday carrying an olive green bag emblazoned with a red star and the words "Serve the People" printed in Chinese, perhaps Chinese Communist leader Mao Zedong's most famous political slogan.

The bags are marketed as fashion accessories in some world capitals, but in Peru the slogan evokes memories of the Maoist Shining Path insurgency that fought the government in the 1980s and early 1990s in a bloody conflict that left nearly 70,000 people dead.

"I sincerely apologize to anyone I may have inadvertently offended. The bag was a purchase I made as a tourist in China and I did not realize the potentially hurtful nature of the slogan printed on it," Diaz said in a statement e-mailed to The Associated Press.

More here, though not much more. Chances are the red star was more at issue than the slogan, as such. Unless a lot more people in Peru can read Chinese than you'd think.

So, we're all good -- at least until Angelina Jolie visits Nepal.

Posted by smclemee at June 29, 2007 6:29 PM