Shelbyville, TN and the truth behind the making of a propaganda film

Reporter Brian Mosely:

I never imagined three and a half years ago that simply telling a story honestly could lead to being demonized on national television, in a film sponsored by our own government, no less.


It’s as if someone made a film about Japanese interment during World War II and left out the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Those comments are from reporter Mosely (whose words and deeds were twisted for the film) from the Shelbyville Times-Gazette yesterday in advance of this week’s debut of a Leftwing propaganda film (Welcome to Shelbyville) to be released widely throughout the US with the help of the US State Department.  The reporter and the newspaper are attempting to fight back against monstrous lies perpetrated by the federal government and George Soros sponsored film makers. 

RRW Editor:  We have followed the making of this propaganda film from the first arrival of the team in Tennessee (led by Kim Snyder) and have posted many times on it.  Please return for a moment to read this post in January with background information and links to earlier posts.

It is very important that after you learn the truth about the film that you send the Times-Gazette link to your local reporters and to everyone you know who might see the film.  I was told by a reader last night that it will be shown in Emporia, KS this week which long-time readers know was a town embroiled in the Tyson’s /Somali issue in 2007 as well (we have a whole category here at RRW about Emporia).  In that city, Tyson’s pulled the plug on the controversial meat packing plant and moved Somalis from the town clearly in response to the upheaval in that city.

It has been my contention from the early days of RRW that the US State Department and its federal refugee contractors are working to supply cheap immigrant labor to the meatpacking industry, as well as to import third worlders to change the political landscape of middle America.  They hide behind the cover of  a “humanitarian” agenda.

The film’s purpose is to smear Shelbyville as a racist town and shame any other town into silence that might have a problem with third worlders, especially Muslims, flooding their communities.

Know that the US State Department will be promoting this film in a conference call to reporters on Tuesday. 

It is so awful (and so scary) to see the lengths our own government will go to to promote lies, and a political/crony agenda.

Here is the opening to the Shelbyville Times-Gazette story yesterday:

As many of our readers are aware, in late 2007, I wrote a five part series about the impact that the introduction of Somali refugees were having on Bedford County. The stories focused on how the refugees got here, their traditions and beliefs, and took an honest look at the many cultural clashes that were taking place between the locals and the newcomers.

The series provoked a huge controversy, along with much discussion and debate from members of our community.

Then, in August 2008, the Times-Gazette reported that a new union contract at the Shelbyville Tyson Foods facility replaced Labor Day as a paid holiday with the Muslim festival of Eid al-Fitr.

That story put Shelbyville on the national stage, with the topic touching off coverage from the national news media, as well as massive attention on the issue from talk radio hosts, websites and blogs, some of which continues to this very day.

The controversy the stories created led a documentary crew to Shelbyville in late 2008 to shoot “Welcome to Shelbyville,” which will air nationwide, May 24 on PBS at 9 p.m.. The film received financing from progressive migration advocates, and has been sponsored by the state department as overseas propaganda. The “propaganda” label comes from no less an authority than the New York Times.

I viewed the film twice in October of last year during its local premiere, and found the filmmaker’s depiction of myself and the stories published by the T-G to be a monstrous distortion, with an incredible series of blatant omissions and dishonest misrepresentations that was obviously designed only to advance the political agenda of the filmmakers and the progressive organizations that funded and supported its production.

While the filmmakers certainly have a right to express their views, in the process, I feel they have engaged in a completely unfair character assassination of both myself, the Times-Gazette, not to mention how the entire city of Shelbyville is depicted.

They have told their story. Now, I shall tell mine.

Read it all!

I was planning to give readers more excerpts, but I want you to go to the original story and read the whole thing (with links)—it is so shocking!   And, as I said in January, someone should write a book about this—about the making of Marxist/Socialist propaganda in the modern day.


New readers, go here to learn how many Somali refugees have been admitted to the US  by the State Department over the last 20 years.  Guess they are now trying to cover their you-know-whats with this attack on a Bible-belt town.

***Update:  Fighting the smears on their town!  See the editorial today also in the Times-Gazette (casting a shadow on Shelbyville), here.

***Update # 2:  I missed this on Friday!  Jerry Gordon writing at New English Review exposed the power and funding behind the propaganda film, here.

***Update #3:  NYC blogger JB Spins, nails it,  here.

***Update #4:  Pamela Geller posts here at Atlas Shrugs—thanks for helping get the truth out!

***Update May 24th:    Brenda Walker writing at Limits to Growth has another good take on this (here) and reminds us of the female genital mutilation practiced by Somalis, including some in the US.

13 thoughts on “Shelbyville, TN and the truth behind the making of a propaganda film

  1. I’m very interested in seeing the film because of the extremes in reaction to it leading up to its national broadcast. To me, the best films employ a multiplicity of narratives and layers of meaning — beyond easy devices such as “the town is/was racist”, or “the Somalis are incompatible” or “the Somalis are heros” or “the town is welcoming”. It’s very possible, given the complexity of situations, for all of the above to be true, and for these truths to shift and change as time goes by and depending on the point of view being expressed. This is the inherent challenge of being a documentarian.
    As I said above, the current market for documentaries (dictated by funders taste, which is dictated by how well they think they can sell a film) puts a lot of pressure on filmmakers to condense real-life events, which may unfold over a number of years, in 55-80 minutes of easy-to-digest character driven plot structure. Think back to high school English class and studies of classic drama – that is what doc funders often want to see nowadays in film proposals. It doesn’t surprise me, if the allegations against Snyder etc are true, that they would condense and shuffle events in Shelbyville to achieve this. Though it may not have been “true to life”, moving that celebration event to the end of the film rather than sticking to pure chronological order would have given the film the resolution it needed to fit a 3-act structure. Please don’t misinterpret this is me saying it’s okay to do this, just that these are practical considerations to the business of putting a film together. I don’t condone that it should be always employed and it frustrates me as a creator that this is the current favored style (three act narratives applied to documentary). I see that the complaints about the film here are from another perspective (that its propaganda), I just wanted to offer some background info on the hows and whys of docs beyond that.


  2. I heard a panel discussion with the individuals interviewed in the film. Some of them were PAID for their part in the film. And this is a documentary?


    1. Do you have a link? I’d like to hear it, too. Sometimes subjects in a film are paid an honorarium for their time because being the subject of a film is quite an intrusive experience, and filmmakers/producers sometime chose to compensate them for that. There is no hard and fast rule to this in the doc world, it’s usually up to the producers and the budget. Others are firmly against any sort of payment, even as small compensation for time and access. One of the many ethical dilemmas to being in this field.

      (by the way, I’m not Kim Snyder! ha)


      1. No, I do not have a link. the panel discussion was not recorded as far as I know. But one of the main interviewees was very up front about how the money helped her out of a tight financial situation.


  3. I love your take on this, Miche. Sorta like the Michael Moore school of “documentary” filmmaking. Start out with a preconceived concept and never every waver from it.


  4. Perhaps some of the controversy also arises from issues of the documentary filmmaking process itself: filmmakers who aren’t from or don’t live in the location/setting of their film; large funders’ current tastes dictating that a nonfiction film have a structure more akin to a narrative film (basic 3-act play structure – exposition, conflict/inciting incident, resolution – when “real life” rarely actually happens so neatly); and the general public’s expectation that “documentary” and “journalism” are one in the same, when they are truly very different forms.


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