A parody video has been launched in which “President Obama” adopts the so-called Shaggy Defence – just say it wasn’t you - against charges he has killed thousands of people in illegal drone strikes around the world.
The video – from human rights charity Reprieve and Lush Cosmetics, and produced by Don’t Panic London – premiered last night at an event at the Soho Hotel. Parodying Shaggy’s 2001 hit ‘It Wasn’t Me’. Featuring “President Obama”, “Shaggy” and “a drone”, the video is intended to raise awareness of Obama’s ongoing illegal drones programme in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia – all countries with which the US is not at war.
Attacks in these countries have so far killed an estimated 4,700 people including children, while drones circle overhead 24/7 terrorising entire communities. UK companies and the UK government are complicit in the drone strikes through supplying material support and sharing intelligence.
Clive Stafford Smith, Director of Reprieve, said: “The Shaggy Defense’ is arguably Shaggy’s greatest contribution to popular culture. Following the release of his eponymous smash hit, cheating spouses around the world began to heed his invaluable advice and just say, ‘it wasn’t me’, when caught philandering. The true brilliance of ‘the Shaggy defense’ is that it can be applied to almost any situation including international war crimes such as drone attacks. When asked, just say: “it wasn’t me, it was my drone.” Free legal advice: you’re welcome, Mr President.”
Notes to editors
- For further information please contact Clemency Wells in Reprieve’s Press Office: firstname.lastname@example.org / +44 (0) 207 553 8161
- Don't Panic is a BAFTA award-winning creative agency who come up with disruptive, engaging ideas to get new audiences interested in brands and issues. For further information, see here: http://www.dontpaniclondon.com/
- Lush is a campaigning manufacturer and retailer of fresh handmade cosmetics with shops in forty-nine countries. For further information, please see: https://www.lush.co.uk/
- For further information about Reprieve’s work on drones, see: www.reprieve.org.uk/drones
- Reprieve, a legal action charity, uses the law to enforce the human rights of prisoners, from death row to Guantánamo Bay. Reprieve investigates, litigates and educates, working on the frontline, to provide legal support to prisoners unable to pay for it themselves. Reprieve promotes the rule of law around the world, securing each person’s right to a fair trial and saving lives. Clive Stafford Smith is the founder of Reprieve and has spent 25 years working on behalf of people facing the death penalty in the USA.