But when it comes to sheer shamefulness, the conformist “radicals” of Hollywood outdid themselves in the years after the Islamofascist attacks on 9/11. When the United States responded to these atrocities by attempting to destroy the terrorist staging grounds in Afghanistan and establish a beachhead of Middle Eastern democracy in Iraq, Hollywood reacted by churning out propaganda movies that could only demoralize our allies and bolster our low and savage enemies: Syriana, In the Valley of Elah, Rendition, Redacted, Lions for Lambs, Green Zone, Body of Lies, Stop Loss, and on and on. Many of these films portrayed our soldiers and intelligence officers as rapists, murderers, torturers, or noble fools manipulated by conniving Republicans. Not one of them (including the excellent HBO film Taking Chance and the flawed but powerful Hurt Locker, which at least showed our troops in a positive light) depicted the wars themselves as good or noble endeavors. Besides Chance and Locker, these films were bad and they were bombs, showing that ideology, not art or commerce, dictated their content. It was the dark mirror image of Hollywood’s patriotic response to Pearl Harbor in the 1940s, a living diagram of what the Left has wrought in our cultural lives since then.
Now there is talk of a film memorializing the killing of bin Laden, and soldiers and veterans are beginning to show up as heroes in pictures like Source Code. But the fact that film depictions of the military may change somewhat now that a Democratic president has taken over and expanded on the war policies put in place by his Republican predecessor provides no excuse for what happened. When America really needed them, our filmmakers betrayed her. And because their unpatriotic products were made while our troops were under fire in the field, they constitute, when considered together, an unprecedentedly wicked action by an industry that rose to success and power through celebrating the nation and values that it now mindlessly attacks.