Heather battles psychological demons. Daniel fears dangers that may strike at any moment. Lisa exorcises her troubles with an unlikely search for forgiveness. The common cause of their suffering: the U.S. Air Force’s predator drone program, though none of them were victims of an attack. They were servicemen and women who conducted America’s unmanned war.
Filmmaker Sonia Kennebeck takes on the controversial tactic of drone warfare, and demands accountability through the personal accounts—recollections, traumas, and responses—of three American veterans whose lives have been shaken by the roles they played in this controversial method of attack. Through a compassionate lens that captures moments of regret and confusion, she argues that no matter the distance, analysts can sustain psychological injuries, and are then either ignored or kept silent. Superbly crafted visuals add depth to her concern, while a moment-by-moment account of a drone attack from both sides of the conflict exemplifies the brutality of the program. Executive produced by Wim Wenders and Errol Morris, National Bird demands accountability through a direct and difficult question: how will history judge America for these attacks?
Sonia Kennebeck is an independent documentary filmmaker and investigative journalist who has worked for CNN and ARD German public television's highest-rated current affairs program, Panorama. She lives in Washington, D.C., where she runs her own production company Ten Forward Films and makes films about international politics and human rights.
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