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Award-winning film on Iraq to be shown April 11; panel discussion follows
Award-winning film on Iraq to be shown April 11; panel discussion followsMarch 31, 2008SU News ServicesSUnews@syr.edu
The Program on the Analysis and Resolution of Conflict (PARC) and the Public Affairs Program, both in the Maxwell School, will co-sponsor a free showing of the award-winning film on Iraq “The Ground Truth,” followed by a panel presentation of veterans and family members affected by the war, Friday, April 11, at 3 p.m. in Maxwell Auditorium. The event is open to the public.
Robert McClure, Chapple Family Professor of Citizenship and Democracy in the Maxwell School, will open the event. A panel discussion with audience participation will follow the film, which runs 78 minutes.
- Joe Godfrey is the father of three Army veterans, two of whom served in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. His eldest son returned from Iraq in spring 2004 and shortly thereafter was granted a medical retirement because of symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. After less than three months at home, he was killed in a robbery/murder — a result, his family believes, of the government’s failure to provide adequate medical treatment. Godfrey has sought to increase public awareness of this country’s failure to adequately care for veterans by telling his son’s story.
- Mike Blake is an Iraq war veteran from Binghamton who enlisted at age 18 in 2001. In April 2003, his Army unit, the 4th Infantry Division, was sent to Iraq. He served in Iraq until March 2004 as a Humvee and supply truck driver for a tank battalion. He applied for conscientious objector status based on his experience in Iraq and received an honorable discharge in 2004. He is currently a student at the SUNY College at Cortland, studying elementary education.
- Bill Cross is a West Point graduate and Viet Nam veteran who served from September 1964-September 1965 as an advisor with a Vietnamese Armored Cavalry Troop. Cross saw combat and was awarded the Combat Infantryman’s Badge and two medals for valor. He resigned from the Army as a major after 10 years in the service. The last three years were spent back at West Point teaching leadership. He is currently a professor of psychology at Onondaga Community College and in private practice helps veterans with stress disorders and their families.
“The Ground Truth” focuses on the lives of men and women who served in Iraq and how the war affected them. The filmmaker’s subjects are patriotic young men and women who experience recruitment, training, combat, homecoming and the struggle to reintegrate with families and communities.
“This film is not about the right or the left, or about blue or red states. It is about the hundreds of thousands of U.S. soldiers who have been released by the military after serving in Iraq — and the truth they hope to share with their fellow citizens,” says producer Patricia Foulkrod. “I produced and directed ‘The Ground Truth’ because I felt it was time to stop hiding behind the politics. No one was writing or talking about thousands of invisible injured soldiers, for the most part young men returning to young wives who must now be their care givers.”