Ex-Kazaa Guy’s Provocative Game Pits Israelis Against Iranians

An Australian businessman who once was caught up in the legal battle over the Kazaa file-sharing network has launched a controversial, ad-driven war game.

As reported by the Syndey Morning Herald, Kevin Bermeister is the money man behind Rising Eagle – Gaza. The game pits Israel’s elite Golani Brigade against the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. Players can fight on either side.

Bermeister, who is Jewish, told the newspaper that he wanted to "throw out a challenge to Iran." Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has vowed to destroy Israel.

People will get to know each other in a competitive battleground environment, get to text each other, speak to each other, connect with each other and figure out that they’re human beings and they can get on with each other…


Just like Ahmadinejad is throwing out a challenge to Israel, I think this game throws out a challenge to Iran. Clearly the intent is that the Israeli Defence Force is the futuristic fighting force that is capable of overcoming anything thrown at it, and the challenge is for anyone to come and take a shot.

Rising Eagle has been developed in Israel. Developer Yaron Dotan also spoke to the SMH:

Dotan, 34, was delighted at the suggestion that his game, which includes billboard-size photographs of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad looking like a monkey [see pic at left], might cause offence to Iranians. He describes the Iranian soldiers as "the Waffen SS of today".

"I want this to upset people. I hope it causes the biggest shitstorm in history," he said.

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  1. BrandonL337 says:

    I’m all for shooting crazy theocrats but why isreali weaponry, I don’t discriminate any kind of weapon is good for shooting crazy theocrats in my book.

    United we Stand, Divided we fall.

  2. Chaltab says:

    The problem with that is, nobody whose opinion matters is going to take Ahmadinejad’s side. Anyone with half a brain and a shred of moral decency knows the guy is scum.

  3. ZacharyMiner says:

    It’s surprising that he would go to the extent of creating a game that (as obvious from the monkey picture, not to mention his comments about Iran and the IDF) is meant to paint Iran as the bad guys, but then make the sides equal, and make both sides playable. It would almost be a better art piece if he left the interpretation up to the players. Are they the righteous Israelis campaigning against Ahmadinejad’s theocratic regime, or are they the righteous Iranians campaigning against Western aggression? To give it a partisan leaning seems to destroy some of the useful dialogue which could come from it.

    Maybe if, when you chose to be the Iranians it displayed offensive pictures of Israeli politicians instead…

  4. Jabrwock says:

    I think it would be more controversial if he had portrayed the IRG as terrorists. Instead it’s almost like those "US vs. Russia" games like Operation Flashpoint. Barring the monkey pics of course. At least he didn’t nerf the Iranian side.

    — If your wiimote goes snicker-snack, check your wrist-strap…

  5. Chaltab says:

    His honesty is quite refreshing. Though, I really don’t think this game will change the face of Iran-Israel relations at all.

    My biggest question is, is it fun to play? I’m always up for a decent first person shooter, especially if it lets me shoot crazy theocrats with Israeli weaponry.

  6. GoodRobotUs says:

    Certainly, the segregation and elimination of ‘undesirables’ such as homosexuals is very similar to the behaviour of Nazi Germany, however, I agree, this is far more propoganda-led than anything else. Iran has its bad points, I’ll agree, and my opinions of a Theology as a ruling sect is not a good one, I’ll go no further than that on that particular subject.

    However, I also feel the game looks out the outcome of the animosity between the two countries and does nothing to deal with the roots of the problem, which are far more than it simply being about Judiasm and Islam, there’s a history of bad behaviour on both sides.

    I agree that this is far more about demonising an enemy than dealing with any kind of problem, there was a great deal of anger in the US, as I recall, about people generalising about an entire countries’ occupants based on the behaviour of a  small ‘elite’ section of it, and I think that is the problem here, like most Germans in Nazi Germany, they did nothing because if they spoke out, they would be next, not to mention that there were those in Germany who put their lives, and their families lives, on the line to try and stop the Nazis, and many paid the ultimate price for it. This situation also occurs in Iran.

    So yes, I have little love for Ahmadinejad, I think he’s an egomaniacal nutcase, but personally, I think the conflict is not going to be looked at objectively until people realise that a country, any country, is not populated by clones of its leaders.

  7. Spartan says:

    Well if the Russians, Germans, Americans, Japanese don’t have get all bent out of shape being portrayed in video games then the rest of the world should not either.


    "The most difficult pain a man can suffer is to have knowledge of much and power over little" – Herodotus

  8. Ed says:

    What a pointless, bigotted thing to say. I can’t imagine why you would even post this particular O/T view of yours.

  9. ZacharyMiner says:

    Well then, you’re a small-minded bigot and a racist. I hope you get banned very quickly, and take your hate speech elsewhere.

  10. Eville1 says:

    Way to paint with a huge fucking brush. And why the Turks? The Turks are well known for violence in history. You do realize there are more countries in the middle east then the ones americans label the "axis of evil?" Some are even innocent bystanders. Or have you forgotten the first time we fucked with Saddam? Please, please try and make more intelligent statements. This just makes me weep for the future.

  11. BlackIce says:

    Despite the fact that I think everyone in the Middle East are scum (bar the Turks), I fucking hate the Iranians most.

    ~You Could Be Mine, But You’re Way Out Of Line..~

  12. Eville1 says:

    I was pointing out how illogical his statement was. He very broadly defined an entire region while making a random exception without backing up why he did either. That last part was just me being insulting to his intelligence.

  13. Eville1 says:

    It’s not even well reasoned, logical hate speech. If it were, he’d hate the turks too. I vote inbred.

  14. Brokenscope says:

    I clarified his comment, you said I was projecting. My attempt at clarification was for the people who do NOT read the forums.



  15. Eville1 says:

    Well whoooooo. That’s great. I’m glad YOU KNOW. Because of course everyone reads the forums and knows him inside and out. No one could ever just come by and glance at what he wrote and draw a totally different conclusion now can they? Absolutely not! Because EVERYONE READS THE FORUMS!


    Dude, seriously, he failed to clarify a single point and just left it there. It makes him seem like a pretty big racist really.


    Oh, and it really doesn’t matter that he’s talking aboit violence over secularism. 1.) The topic of the post is about Israeli’s shooting Iranians and Iranians shooting Israeli’s. 2.) Secular vs Violence didn’t enter into his post, just "Hate." I mentioned Turkey and violence, as in "Why not dislike Turkey along with the rest of them because of this.."

  16. Brokenscope says:

    No I think I know exactly what I’m fucking talking about considering that I know his views from his time on the Forums.

  17. SimonBob says:

    Hm.  On the one hand, I feel that if the Iranians are really as bad as the Nazis were, then by all means, let’s stop them before they commit mass genocide in the name of nationalism.  But on the other, I get the sense that this is demonizing propaganda designed to cloud the issues and incite further hatred in an unwarranted situation.

    Good thing I’m not so heavily influenced by video games that I can’t distinguish them from reality.

    The Mammon Industry

  18. ConnorM5 says:

    I’d be surprised if anyone in Iran will be able to play this game. I’m not sure, but I’m speculating they probably have a ‘Great Firewall’ like China does, to block out material that questions (or is questionable to) the state. Either way, though, good on him for making a game central to a global issue. And for making the Iranian Revolutionary Guard looking like pansies compared to the IDF. Those guys are badasses.

  19. Colonel_Finn says:

    I hate to say it but I reckon this will get less attention from anti-racism groups than the Resident Evil 5 trailer.

  20. eston says:

    "I want this to upset people. I hope it causes the biggest shitstorm in history," he said.

    Most quotable quote I’ve read all week!

  21. Sigvatr says:

    I can’t say I respect the guy for being so upfront about wanting to troll people because people probably won’t be able to take it seriously now. If when I released Muslim Massacre I said "I made this to piss off ass many people as possible" then no one would think for themselves, and that’s just the problem with shock art.

    I don’t think the best way to play your cards is simply to admit up front that it is meant to offend people.

  22. E. Zachary Knight says:

    Hey at least this guy is upfront about wanting to troll people. Not like the moron behind V-Tech Rampage.

    He also has a goal in wanting to piss people off beyond "for the LULZ."

    I hope for the best.

    Also this game sounds like a Counterstrike clone with more specific sides than Terrorists and Anti-Terrorists. I wonder if it plays the same.

    E. Zachary Knight
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  23. Doomsong says:

    You have to admit… pissing people off is a great way to draw attention to an issue. Good work sir!

    "Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety" – Benjamin Franklin

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