Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|African American War Heroes|
Genres: Action & Adventure, Special Interests, Documentary, Military & War
Black Soldiers and WWII
Jeffery Mingo | Homewood, IL USA | 05/21/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This work is timely in that the Tuskegee Airmen were recently honored this year. This disc chronicles Black American servicemembers in World War II.
I appreciated that this work spelled out the racism faced by this group. It was not just segregation or exclusion from the military. Blacks were given menial jobs. They were resisted by locals near military bases. They were not praised or given that medals that their white counterparts were. This work shows how multifaceted oppression can be. It was great seeing and hearing anti-racist whites who supported their Black peers, but this work never is bold enough to say, "Leader X and Leader Y were some straight-up bigots!" It's a bit cowardly to protect those that provided barriers to Black equality.
I appreciated learning things. For example, I didn't know about the military service of Black women at the time. I didn't know that at one point a Black unit, a Japanese-American unit, and a white unit worked together in a battle. Still, I saw L. Fishburne's "Tuskegee Airmen" so much of this was not new. Even in African-American studies circles, the importance of World War II to Black Americans is often highlight. Thus, this documentary may be old-hat for many potential viewers.
While timely, I am worried that this could be used as military propaganda. Were you insulted seeing those recruiters approach young, Black males in Flint, Michigan in Michael Moore's "Farenheit"? This work may make you feel the same way. Robert Staples in his "Black Masculinity" says the country deprives young, Black males of other employment opportunities and makes military service an inevitability. So this documentary may rub doves and Afrocentrists the wrong way, even as it tries to be respectful."