Belle of Liberty

Letting Freedom Ring

Monday, March 19, 2012

The Real SEALS


The Navy SEALS have never liked the limelight, author Tom Clancy notes in the novelization of the new film, Act of Valor.  For one thing, it causes a major security risk for them and their families.  For another thing, real heroes don’t look for applause.  The applause that should go to them goes to movie stars and athletes, instead, and that’s just fine with the SEALS.

Although they’re attached to the NAVY, they go anywhere from the mountains to the desert.  They are a multi-service unit, in cooperation with all the Armed Services.  They take on the most dangerous, covert activities and while a good deal of their action has been in the Middle East, they go other places, too.

The most famous Navy SEAL time is SEAL Team Six, which took out Osama Bin Laden.  The movie, Act of Valor, is about the Delta, or “Bandito,” Platoon of SEAL Team Seven.  It's based on a true account and the actors are real SEAL Team members.

A CIA case officer has been murdered and the agent, a woman doctor working for Doctor Without Borders, has been abducted.  Bandito Platoon had already been put on alert that Al Qaeda v.2 was getting ready to stage a major attack in the United States.  They’ve been able to connect some of the dots.  They’re suspicious when the doctor is abducted by a Chechnya-born drug kingpin living in South America.  Bandito Platoon must extract the woman agent before the kingpin has her killed.  The CIA wants to know what it is the kingpin wants to know from her.

What they discover during the rescue leads them to more and more dots and a horrifying scheme to attack the United States.

No Hollywood writer could create a better bond between the characters than already exists between the SEAL team family.  The action and suspense are non-stop.  The movie pulls no punches.  We see exactly what kind of sacrifice our armed services men and women make for us.

Professional actors perform other roles.  Jason Cottle (distantly related by ex-marriage to Dustin Hoffmann) plays the Islamo-terrorist Shabal and Alex Veadov (We Own the Night; Air Force One) plays the drug and arms dealer, Christo.  But real heroes play the real heroes.

Clancy downplays the role of drugs in the novel.  It’s all about the terrorists.  But the drug money is how the terrorists are funded and anyone making an excuse for doing drugs, or claiming that making pot legal would take away that threat are deluding themselves.  Like heck it’s not about the drugs. 

These men and women are dying for us, putting their lives on the line for freedom, and taking the grenade for one another.  Are they risking death for freedom-loving Americans or woolly-headed sheep who won’t trouble themselves to take up the cause now before these men and women have to shed their blood as the ultimate resort to protect freedom?

Are we even worth dying for?  Go see Act of Valor and think about what you’d be willing to do for the cause of freedom. 

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