“The Eiger Sanction” (1975): Learning Truth from Fiction


Here’s an interesting exchange I never expected to hear from a 1970’s Clint Eastwood movie. Eastwood is Jonathan Hemlock, an assassin for the U.S. government. In this scene, Jemima Brown has just apologized to Hemlock for seducing him for the sole purpose of assisting Dragon (head of the “sanction” assassination program) in blackmailing Hemlock to take on another job. Pope is Dragon’s assistant.

-Prole Center


Jonathan Hemlock: It’s dangerous, child, to come to conclusions when you don’t have any facts. Now let me lay some on you. Sure Dragon knows what he’s doing, just like he knew what he was doing when he worked for the Nazis during World War II.

Jemima Brown: What?

Jonathan Hemlock: Oh, you didn’t know that, did you? Yes your “wrap him up in red, white, and blue” Mr. Dragon’s a goddamn Hessian, that’s what he is. And he’d sell out the other side as fast as he’d sell out our side. And he’d sell out his mother, too, if the bloodless freak had one.

Jonathan Hemlock: You think it’s so awful the other side has a germ formula? It’s against the Geneva Convention, isn’t it, and they stole it from us. Well what the hell are we doing with it in the first place? We’re not supposed to have one either.

Jemima Brown: And you don’t see any difference between their side and our side?

Jonathan Hemlock: Yeah, I see a difference. But as long as we have Dragons and Popes working for us, how bad can the other side be?

Some moments later. . .

Jemima Brown: Friends? Enemies? Where do I fit in?

Jonathan Hemlock: I’m sorry, but you don’t. [Raises his glass of whiskey in a toast.] Here’s to the selfish killer and the patriotic whore.

Jemima Brown: Do you have anything else to say to me?

Jonathan Hemlock: I usually keep a twenty in the bowl there by the kitchen door. You might pick it up on your way out.

This entry was posted in Class War Chronicle and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.