New Clear Vision

constructive commentary for the chronically farsighted

Coming Home in the 21st Century

August 29, 2011 By: NCVeditor Category: Culture, Michael N. Nagler, Politics

Pathologizing War, Prioritizing Peace

by Michael N. Nagler

The recent British film, In Our Name, is a returning-soldier drama featuring a married woman, Suzy, who leaves her husband and little girl to fight in Iraq. Because she’s involved in the killing of a little girl during her tour (this part is based on a true story, but it happened to a man) she returns home only to steadily fall apart under the stress of soul-destroying anxieties.  Apparently not much has changed since Coming Home, the Jane Fonda film of 1978.

In real life, Ethan McCord was involved in a now-infamous episode that took a strangely similar turn. It became one of the most shocking (and hopefully awakening) revelations by Wikileaks: the video now dubbed “Collateral Murder” that was taken from an Apache helicopter as its gunners massacred a group of civilians in a Baghdad suburb in 2007. Addressing a Southern California audience about his role in the episode this past June, McCord described how he saw two small children mangled by gunfire from the helicopter and thought of his own two children at home. (more…)