RESISTANCE CINEMA in collaboration with WORLD CAN’T WAIT Presents “IN THE NAME OF DEMOCRACY: AMERICA'S CONSCIENCE, A SOLDIER'S SACRIFICE” Daedalus Productions, Producer/Director NINA ROSENBLUM, Producer/Writer DENNIS WATLINGTON, Narrated by ELI WALLACH, 2010, 60 minutes
WHEN: Sunday November 14, 2010 1:15pm
WHERE: Community Church NYC Gallery Room 28 E. 35th st. @ Park Ave.
ADMISSION: Free, donations appreciated
SPECIAL GUESTS: The film will be hosted by Actor and author, Charles Grodin, political commentator for 60 Minutes II and earlier on his own CNBC show. His commentaries can be heard on NYC radio (WCBS). Nina Rosenblum (producer and director) and Dennis Watlington (writer and producer).
IN THE NAME OF DEMOCRACY is a film about the first officer in the United States Army to refuse deployment to Iraq on moral grounds. Court-martialed as a result of his stand, Lt. Watada’s trial ended in a mistrial. A second court martial found in favor of Lt. Watada, on the basis of double jeopardy Lt. Watada’s story demonstrates how one American chose to act on his changing beliefs.
It is my duty as a commissioned officer in the United States Army to speak out against grave injustices. My moral and legal obligation is to the constitution. Not to those who issue unlawful orders. I stand before you today because it is my job to serve and protect American soldiers and innocent Iraqis who have no voice. It is my conclusion that the war in Iraq is not only morally wrong, but also a breach of American law. -Lt. Ehren Watada, June 7, 2006
Director Nina Rosenblum presents Lt. Watada’s story as an exploration of American patriotism. Following 9/11, at 26 years of age, he interrupted a promising career to answer the President’s assertion that the country was at risk. An Eagle Scout as a youth, Watada believed the government’s claim that “weapons of mass destruction” threatened all Americans, and as testimony to his patriotism, he joined the armed services. After studying the issues of the Iraq war, Lt. Watada reached the conclusion that the country had been lied to by its leaders and that the war was immoral. When ordered to deploy, he felt that he could not in good conscience lead men into an unjust war; he chose instead to face a jail term. The decision would have a profound impact on his family and friends who rallied to support him.
Watada won his case on the basis of double jeopardy, was released from the army with a less than honorable discharge, and continues to fight to change that. The film highlights the country’s internal dysfunction during the lead up to, and follow through, our declaration of war against the Iraqi nation. It is a portrait in American courage, set against a background that focuses on the issues that prompted Lt. Watada to choose the course he did in order to protest an immoral and to him unconstitutional war. As the country continues to fight in Afghanistan, these pressing issues gain additional currency.