The Tillman Story Trailer
Very few films spark my interest months in advance. Last year when Sundance announced they will be screening a film about Pat Tillman in the 2010 Sundance film fest. I was hoping and praying I was able to get into one of the screenings. But, no such luck. I had to wait. And wait I did. Now the film is in limited release in San Francisco. So, I had to go the first night.
This documentary by Amir Bar-Lev tackles a very difficult issue on many levels. Fratricide is a latin word meaning “to kill brother”. In the military we call it “blue on blue”. Commonly referred to as “friendly fire”. There is nothing glamorous or heroic about such an act. No one is able to escape the pain of “Blue on blue”. Whether you pulled the trigger or you are the family of the victim. It is a sad but, true occurrence of war. But, nothing hurts more than when the government you are fighting for hides the truth from everyone. And that is exactly what the “Bush” administration did to the Tillman family.
As many know Pat was a professional football player. And after the tragedy of 9/11. He felt compelled to put that on hold. To do what he felt was right. He joined the U.S Army to become a Ranger and help the government fight a war on terrorism. Pat refused to do media interviews. And refused a military burial if he was killed while serving. Pat’s fear of the government using him as a PR pawn. Unfortunately came true. While in Afghanistan. Pat’s Ranger platoon was told to split into two serials. One would move forward to the objective. The other was to escort a broken down HumVee back to another village. (Which in my opinion and proper procedure is a no-go.) Somewhere along the way serial 2 turned around and tried to link back up with serial 1(Pat’s serial). Once serial 1 reached their objective. They heard mortar rounds and a fire fight behind their location. Serial 1 knew it had to be serial 2 caught in a fire fight. So, Pat grabbed his fire team and headed up the mountain to get a better vantage point. What happened next was what all soldiers fear. “The fog of war” getting shot at by your own team. And this is where Pat’s life was taken.
Although everyone there knew that this was a fratricide. They were told not to say a word. And what the government did from this point is beyond words. This documentary examines the life of Pat and his family’s struggle to expose the truth.
Very few people in my opinion should be labeled a hero. But, Pat Tillman is one who is deserving of such a label. I highly recommend this to everyone. This is not about “Right-wing” or “left-wing”. It is about what is right and true. And if it is a painful truth. All need to be told so. This is a