Lioness Filmmakers Respond to Pentagon Announcement

By Megan McLagan and Daria Sommers, directors of the documentary Lioness

On February 9th, 2012, the Pentagon unveiled plans to allow women to serve in jobs that would put them closer to the front lines but still block them from all-male infantry, armor, and special-operation units. Although represented by the Pentagon as “the beginning, not the end, of a process,” this current action does little more than bring policy in line with a reality that has existed for American servicewomen in Iraq and Afghanistan for the last decade.

Directors Meg McLagan and Daria Sommers

As the women support soldiers profiled in our documentary Lioness (which aired on Independent Lens in 2009) reveal, they were being “attached” to all-male army infantry units as early as 2003 as part of an ad-hoc program called Team Lioness. While we are gratified that our film has played a small role in focusing attention on the disconnect between policy and reality that existed, we believe that for women in service to have equal opportunities to contribute and advance and not be viewed as 2nd class soldiers, all institutional barriers need to be removed so full gender parity can be achieved.

Click through for video clips from the announcement, the filmmakers, and the Lioness trailer.
Continue reading

Most Dangerous Man in America Streams Free Online to Mark 40th Anniversary of Pentagon Papers

The Academy Award nominated documentary is streaming free on P.O.V.‘s website in recognition of the 40th Anniversary of the Pentagon Papers.

POV is marking the 40th anniversary of the publication of the Pentagon Papers with a special opportunity to watch The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers online.

The acclaimed documentary by Judith Ehrlich and Rick Goldsmith follows Daniel Ellsberg, a leading Vietnam War strategist, who concluded in 1971 that America’s role in the war was based on decades of lies. He leaked 7,000 pages of top-secret documents to The New York Times, a daring act of conscience that led directly to Watergate, President Nixon’s resignation, and the end of the Vietnam War.

This week not only marks the date the documents were originally published in The New York Times, but also when the Nixon Presidential Library and Museum will release the now declassified documents.

Read The New York Times piece on the 40th Anniversary of the Pentagon Papers and watch the trailer after the jump >>
Continue reading