Propaganda in modern video games
Call of Duty's latest entry to franchise, which is Modern Warfare, feels like a propaganda filled game. Along with the White Helmets that are saving lives in rebel-held Idlib, the game's solo-player campaign will also feature the PKK terror group's Syrian branch YPG as "the good guys".
A new Call of Duty game scheduled to release on October 25. It has been more than 15 years since the first game in the franchise released. In this time period, a total of 17 Call of Duty games have been made. The franchise has become so popular, it sold millions of copies; despite annual releases the franchise managed to keep the momentum.
Call of Duty is now the fourth best-selling video game franchise ever, at over 300 million copies sold worldwide. It has become a cultural icon. But the game has changed throughout the years; gameplay, story and most importantly it has become more political than ever.
Its latest entry to franchise, which is Modern Warfare, feels like a propaganda filled game. Along with the White Helmets that are saving lives in rebel-held Idlib, the game's solo-player campaign will also feature the PKK terror group's Syrian branch YPG as "the good guys". You can take look at the trailer below where the terror group is depicted as a group of brave fighters.
You may not be familiar with the White Helmets, a group that is helping civilians affected by Russian and regime attacks mainly in Idlib, but you must have heard about the YPG or the PKK terror organisations. It’s actually who they are. The PKK is a terrorist group that killed thousands of innocent people. The Syrian branch YPG/SDF was backed by the US for the fight against ISIS - another terror group. It was supplied with tons of ammunition and military equipment. After ISIS was completely defeated, these so called heroes tried to invade northern Syria by displacing thousands of people. It might sound good for someone, who is not familiar with the Middle East. They might think that the YPG fights for the good of the Syrian people. But in fact it does not.
The YPG/SDF is linked to the PKK, which has slaughtered around 40.000 innocent people within borders of Turkey. However they’re portrayed as "the good guys" in Call of Duty’s latest entry. The writer of the game Kurosaki says he hopes ‘Modern Warfare’ will inspire fans to check out the harrowing and eye-opening documentaries about "The White Helmets". At the same time, the game is manipulating the narrative about what’s really going on in Syria by depicting the PKK branch YPG/SDG and its terror elements as "heroes".
But this is not first time that Call of Duty was purely used as a propaganda meterial for the US government. Before that, older Call of Duty titles depicted the assassination of the leader of Venezuela, which is currently in turmoil.
Another Call of Duty entry "Black Ops" featured an assassination attempt to the Cuban leader Fidel Castro.
As someone who enjoys playing FPS games, this is getting out of hand. If someone gets to play this game before looking into the real situtation in Syria, they will have false opinions on Syria and certainly about the YPG terror organisation. Video games should be free of any kind of politicial agenda.
Author: Emre Kekeç