BLOG: American Psychopath
By: Michael Riccardi
The Iraq war was tough on America. It was tough on its economy, tough on its families, and tough on its service men and women. However, it was a war full of lies. American Sniper embodies both of these realities.
The movie did a great service to military families, showing their strength and hardship, qualities for which we them owe our gratitude. It also gave great insight into the lives of service men and women with PTSD, for which there is not enough care or funding.
However, like the war itself, the movie was a lie. The first disservice to history occurs when the film cuts from 9/11 footage to Chris Kyle going to fight in Iraq. The Iraq War had absolutely nothing to do with the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001. Saddam Hussein was not responsible for 9/11, nor did Iraq have weapons of mass destruction. In fact, Saddam Hussein and his party were strongly opposed to Al Qaeda and many other groups. So right off the bat, the film is giving people historically inaccurate information, and is framing the war to be one of justice, as opposed to one over oil.
Second, the film shows Kyle feeling almost guilty about his experience. In his book, Chris Kyle referred to everyone he was fighting as “savages” and said that he enjoyed war. What was his only regret? That he did not kill more. Sure, he missed his wife and kids, which is understandable and respectable. However, nobody should enjoy killing people in a war that is against international law with more than 200,000 civilian deaths.
On top of that, Chris Kyle told stories about killing looters in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. Murder is not a just consequence for robbery, certainly not after a devastating hurricane wipes out a city and its resources. It is likely the story Kyle was telling is false, but if it were true, I would certainly be appalled. It just goes to show you the way that the man viewed people. Either the man is a pathological liar, which causes you to question everything he wrote, or there is something deeply disturbing about his actions.
He also wrote in his book about punching out former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura after Ventura told him that they deserved to lose a few guys in Iraq. Ventura sued Kyle over such allegations, claiming they were false, and won! Over a million dollars! Just goes to show again, how Kyle fabricated stories for his own benefit.
Kyle did not follow certain rules of engagement during the war. Like many commanding officers, Chris Kyle was a war criminal.
Now don’t get me wrong, I respect the sacrifice Kyle made for this country, I would never have the guts to do it. We should respect all of our service men and women for such sacrifice. However, this brings me to my final point.
Just because members of the military are fighting in war, does not make them just in what they do. Not everyone who calls out the actions of Chris Kyle and the movie American Sniper is deserving of being called unpatriotic freedom haters. I do not respect the actions that Chris Kyle took. Not all of the people out there are heroes, certainly not Chris Kyle, the “American Psychopath”. Take the war for was it is. Perpetrated by corrupt politicians and spiteful militants, the Iraq War was illegal, and full of war criminals.