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32 Documentaries About War That the US Government Doesn't Want You to See
32 Documentaries About War That the US Government Doesn't Want You to See
Oil wells on fire during the Gulf War in Kuwait, 1991
By Tim Hjersted / filmsforaction.org
Apr 10, 2018

These documentaries expose the ugly truth about war and the governments who wage them. The US government is focused on in this collection because I am based in the US, and it is every citizen's duty to call out and name the crimes of their government. It's all too easy to decry the injustices of other countries while remaining silent when those crimes are committed by our own. But nothing good has ever come from silence when the truth is marginalized and lies are amplified.

As John Pilger says, we must break the silence. But first, we must understand the truth about war, so that we will no longer be fooled by the lies our own government tells us again and again. This kind of media literacy is vitally necessary today. The same government that asked us to trust us with Vietnam, Iraq, and countless other conflicts, is asking us to trust them again when it comes to Russia, Syria, Iran, and North Korea. Let us not forget what we have already learned. 

These documentaries are all mostly free to watch online. A few cost a few dollars to rent. Suggest other films to add to this list via our contact page

If you believe this information is important for everyone to know, please share it. While some of us are familiar with this information, there is always a new generation that must regretfully learn about this history for the first time. This makes this collection especially useful for high school and college students.

Given a large number of people still defend and support aggressive US foreign policy (thanks largely to a complicit and compliant corporate mass media), there is still a great need for this information to reach a wider consciousness. 

Even if we watched some of these films years ago and their conclusions seem obvious, we should never take for granted how many people have yet to take this journey and would benefit from learning about it now. Even many folks that have seen some of these films and consider themselves pretty informed will likely be shocked by the history they will learn about from the ones they haven't seen yet.

 

War Made Easy (2007)
70 min War Made Easy reaches into the Orwellian memory hole to expose a 50-year pattern of government deception and media spin that has dragged the United States into one war after...
Oliver Stone: The Untold History Of The United States (2012)
570 min There is a classified America we were never meant to see. From Academy Award®-winning writer/director Oliver Stone, this ten-part documentary series looks back at human events...
The War You Don't See (2010)
98 min A powerful and timely investigation into the media’s role in war, tracing the history of embedded and independent reporting from the carnage of World War One to the destruction...
Counter-Intelligence: Shining a Light on Black Operations (2013)
360 min "Scott Noble may have outdone himself with Counter Intelligence. The Psywar filmmaker amassed a tour de force of power elite and deep state scholars weighing in and...
Peace, Propaganda And The Promised Land (2004)
79 min Provides a striking comparison of U.S. and international media coverage of the crisis in the Middle East, zeroing in on how structural distortions in U.S. coverage have...
The Power Principle: Corporate Empire and the Rise of the National Security State (2012)
95 min "A gripping, deeply informative account of the plunder, hypocrisy, and mass violence of plutocracy and empire; insightful, historically grounded and highly relevant to the...
What I've Learned About U.S. Foreign Policy (2000)
118 min This is a powerful 10-part compilation that (in important ways) pulls aside the veil of Official myths and Lies about "freedom", "democracy", Human Rights, etc., being the...
War By Other Means (1992)
52 min John Pilger travels to many third world countries to investigate the devastating results of loans from the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF). This film shows...
Breaking The Silence - Truth And Lies In The War On Terror (2003)
51 min "BREAKING THE SILENCE is a film with enormous emotional power, bringing us the human consequences of our military attacks on Middle East countries. It also provides us with...
With God on Our Side (2010)
81 min With God On Our Side takes a look at the theology of Christian Zionism, which teaches that because the Jews are God’s chosen people, they have a divine right to the land of...
Bitter Lake (2015)
136 min Adam Curtis: Politicians used to have the confidence to tell us stories that made sense of the chaos of world events. But now there are no big stories and politicians react...
Buying the War: How Big Media Failed Us (2007)
83 min In 2003, the United States pre-emptively attacked Iraq in a war that would last for eight years claiming an estimated 189,000 lives, costing over $2 trillion and causing untold
Iran (Is Not the Problem) (2008)
79 min IRAN (Is Not The Problem) is a feature length documentary film responding to the failure of the American mass media to provide the public with relevant and accurate information...
The Israeli Lobby (2007)
50 min Is the pro-Israel lobby so strong, financially and politically, that the U.S. relationship with Israel is taboo and therefore unmentionable? And what happens to those who dare...
Dirty Wars (2013)
86 min It's the dirty little secret of the War on Terror: all bets are off, and almost anything goes. We have fundamentally changed the rules of the game and the rules of engagement...
No End in Sight (2007)
102 min A staggering portrait of arrogance and incompetence, the documentary No End in Sight avoids the question of why the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, choosing instead to focus on...
A Very Heavy Agenda Part 1: A Catalyzing Event (2015)
94 min "A Very Heavy Agenda is a behind-the-scenes look at the neocon thinkers that fuel America's endless wars. The film is a chillingly honest account of how the neocons behind both...
A Very Heavy Agenda Part 2: How We Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the New Neocons (2016)
120 min "Completely mind-blowing documentary about neocon ideologues and their bipartisan destructive influence" - Max Blumenthal [Author of Goliath & The 51 Day War] Part 2 Synopsis...
A Very Heavy Agenda Part 3: Maintaining the World Order
212 min “Without doubt it is the best documentary I have watched – on any subject – in years” – Tom Secker [spyculture.com] “One of the most important documentaries in circulation at...
The Secret Government: The Constitution in Crisis (1987)
86 min In this documentary Bill Moyers exposes the inner workings of the secret government. Though originally broadcast in 1987, it is even more relevant today. Interviews with...
Enemy Image (2005)
92 min When Baghdad exploded under bombs, television chose to bring us fireworks. But does this distant and spectacular image tell us what is really happening on the ground, how it...
Vietnam: The Quiet Mutiny (1970)
26 min In this, the first of his 58 documentary films, John Pilger combines candid interviews and amazing frontline footage of Vietnam to portray a growing rift between the US...
Hearts and Minds (1974)
112 min Peter Davis' landmark documentary Hearts and Minds confronts with stark frankness the United States' involvement in Vietnam and the development of its foreign policy in the...
Rethink Afghanistan (2009)
65 min Rethink Afghanistan is a ground-breaking, full-length documentary focusing on the key issues surrounding this war. We hope to raise critical questions regarding Afghanistan...
Iraq For Sale: The War Profiteers (2006)
76 min This is the story of what happens to everyday Americans when corporations go to war.   Acclaimed director Robert Greenwald (Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price, Outfoxed and...
Scarred Lands and Wounded Lives: The Environmental Footprint of War (2008)
58 min Using on-site and archival footage to illustrate specialist and eyewitness accounts from around the world, "Scarred Lands & Wounded Lives" shows how war and preparations for...
Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear & The Selling Of American Empire (2004)
71 min Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear & the Selling of American Empire examines how a radical fringe of the Republican Party used the trauma of the 9/11 terror attacks to advance a...
Cointelpro 101 (2010)
56 min COINTELPRO may not be a well-understood acronym but its meaning and continuing impact are absolutely central to understanding the government’s wars and repression against...
BBC:  The Power of Nightmares (2004)
180 min The Power of Nightmares is a BBC documentary 3-part film series. The films compare the rise of the Neo-Conservative movement in the United States and the radical Islamist...
Soldiers of the Vine: Healing War Trauma with Plant Medicine (2017)
65 min In May of 2016, six American Veterans with PTSD went to the Amazon in search of healing. What they found was another war...for the soul of humanity. Written, Photographed...
The Coming War on China (2016)
110 min The Coming War on China is John Pilger's 60th film for ITV. Pilger reveals what the news doesn't - that the world's greatest military power, the United States, and the world's...
Inner Peace to World Peace (2015)
58 min Can we really create peace in the world? Made for World Peace Day, join UPLIFT on a journey into peace in this inspiring new film.

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32 Documentaries About War That the US Government Doesn't Want You to See