Bush's new secretary of defence: Iron Man

Well, in the world of comics anyway.

The CS Monitor reports that comics have entered the age of terrorism, war, abuse of civil liberties and embedded reporters.


Comics have always had one foot in reality, but it's probably been more so in recent times," says Alex Segura, spokesman for DC Comics. "The audience has gotten older, and the reader is more prone to read about stuff that's going on outside their window."

"Civil War," for instance, explores the issue of civil liberties in the wake of a deadly explosion in a Connecticut neighborhood during the filming of a superhero reality show. Soon, superheroes are at war over mandatory registration, with dissenters facing terms in a prison that will remind readers of Guantánamo Bay.

"There's a lot of real-world echoes," says Joe Quesada, editor in chief of Marvel. "We're posing this argument: Would you sacrifice your privacy for your public safety or your civil liberties for your public safety? This is happening, literally, while we're still in the turmoil of asking ourselves these very same questions."

For those wondering, the CS Monitor, or to give it its proper title, the Christian Science Monitor is a rather unusual organ.

Owned by a church, the First Church of Christ, Scientist, the Monitor is not a religious newspaper, although it does feature one religious article each day. In fact the Monitor is a surprisingly liberal publication, by American standards at least, and attempts to take a calm view of world affairs.

Before the launch of USA Today in the 1980s, the Monitor was the United States's only national newspaper. Unlike USA Today, however, the Monitor is well-regarded journalistically and is renowned for it internationalist outlook. Don't just take my word for it - read this and this.

This die-hard atheist subscribes to its weekly international edition. My 'un-belief' may also explain why I've spent four paragraphs explaining what the newspaper is - Christian apologetics for atheists?

Anyway, just go and read the story.

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