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Electronic Arts, the nation's largest maker of video games, says it is caught in the crossfire between the German and United States governments over the Iraq war. This month, the German government listed a new game produced by Electronic Arts on an index of games the government considers violent. Such games may not be advertised or displayed on shelves in Germany, although they may be kept under store counters and sold to adults.
The game, Command & Conquer Generals, depicts an animated siege of Baghdad, with the United States military battling a fictional terrorist group called the Global Liberation Army, which bombs the city with missiles carrying anthrax, killing civilians.
The director of the German federal bureau that reviews media products for the youth market said the game had been restricted because it glorified war.
"It portrays war as the only way to resolve conflicts," said the director, Elke Monssen-Engberding, whose agency is part of the Ministry for Family Affairs. "It generally advocates war, and it gives military force an aesthetic appeal."
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