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Count Dracula was presented as the figurative anti-Christ invader who promised eternal life through the ingestion not of sacramental, symbolic wine representing the blood of Christ, but of actual human blood. ”40 Throughout history, the livelihoods of various monsters have depended on such consumption. ”* Flesh, on the other hand, sustained such monsters as Grendel, the Greek Minotaur, and werewolves, the latter of which some 18th Century Catholics believed to be the bestial reincarnations of excommunicated parishioners.

When the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building exploded in 1995, the United States was so deeply entrenched in the Middle East that many believed that Muslim militants were responsible for the carnage—the largest terrorist attack on American soil at that time. 58 “The fact that it was such a powerful bomb in Oklahoma City immediately drew investigators to consider deadly parallels that all have roots in the Middle East,” ABC’s John McWethy noted. 59 The fact that such a gross display of violence was perpetrated by a white, southern American male was incomprehensible to many.

In fact, Vietnam was becoming a national nightmare. In 1968, Lean T02579 01 text 34 02/07/2012 08:18 Monsters Among Us 35 the Communist forces launched the staggering Tet Offensive, a surprise ambush of a hundred major cities in South Vietnam that caught the US forces off guard. The size and ferocity of the sudden offensive proved that the Communist forces were more able than many Americans realized. By that time, the Vietnam War was the longest war in America’s history and public outcry was growing.

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