Department ofMarriage & Family Therapy

Department of Languages and Literature, Film Festival Series
Co-sponsored by the Marriage and Family Therapy Department

The Invisible War

Partial view of military woman's face; we can just see her eyes, and part of her hat; she has a fierce or frightened look in her eyes.

FREE Screening & Discussion
Monday, October 8
7PM in Ingram 100

The acclaimed 2012 documentary The Invisible War will be screened on Monday, October 8th at 7pm in Ingram 100.   All are welcome to attend the event to learn more about this important issue.

The Invisible War Trailer

The Invisible War Film Official Webpage

The Invisible War Story

From Oscar-and Emmy-nominated filmmaker Kirby Dick comes The Invisible War, a groundbreaking investigative documentary about one of America's most shameful and best kept secrets: the epidemic of rape within the U.S. military. The film paints a startling picture of the extent of the problem - today, a female soldier in combat zones is more likely to be raped by a fellow soldier than killed by enemy fire.

The Department of Defense estimates there were a staggering 22,800 violent sex crimes in the military
in 2011. 20% of all active-duty female soldiers are sexually assaulted. Female soldiers aged 18 to 21 accounted for more than half of the victims.

Focusing on the powerfully emotional stories of rape victims, The Invisible War is a moving indictment of the systemic cover-up of military sex crimes, chronicling the women’s struggles to rebuild their lives and fight for
justice. It also features hard-hitting interviews with high-ranking military
officials and
members of Congress that reveal the perfect storm of
conditions that exist for rape in the military, its long-hidden history, and what can be done to bring about much-needed change.

 At the core of the film are often heart-rending interviews with the rape
 survivors themselves— people like Kori Cioca, who was beaten and raped by
 her supervisor in the U.S. Coast Guard; Ariana Klay, a Marine who served in
 Iraq before being raped by a senior officer and his friend, then threatened
 with death; and Trina McDonald who was drugged and raped repeatedly by
 military policemen on her remote Naval station in Adak, Alaska. And it isn’t
 just women; according to one study's estimate, one percent of men in the
 military— nearly 20,000 men —were reportedly sexually assaulted in 2009.

 And while rape victims in the civilian world can turn to an impartial police
 force and judicial system for help and justice, rape victims in the military
 must turn to their commanders—a move that is all too often met with
 foot-dragging at best, and reprisals at worst. Many rape victims find
 themselves forced to choose between speaking up and keeping their careers.
 Little wonder that only eight percent of military sexual assault cases are

 The Invisible War exposes the epidemic of sexual assault in the military –
 one of the most under-reported stories of our generation, a story the
 filmmakers are proud to be breaking to the nation and the world. They hope
 the film will help lead a national dialogue about the crime of rape
 perpetrated on the very people who have pledged to protect our country and
 are gratified to see the film is already making an impact. Since it
 premiered at Sundance, the film has been circulating through the highest
 levels of the Pentagon and the administration. Secretary of Defense Leon
 Panetta watched The Invisible War on April 14. Two days later, he directed
 military commanders to hand over all sexual assault investigations to a
 higher-ranking colonel. At the same time, Panetta announced that each branch
 of the armed forces would establish a Special Victims Unit. While these are
 promising first steps, much more needs to be done.

 To that end, The Invisible War is a call for our civilian and military
 leadership to listen.


 "Silver Heart" Award (Dallas Film Festival)

 Audience Award (Sundance Film Festival)

 Nestor Almendros Award (Human Rights Watch Film Festival)

 Best Documentary Award (Seattle Film Festival)

 Film Reviews

 The New York Times The Visible Costs Of The Military's 'Invisible War' by Mark Jenkins

 CNN Interview with Amy Ziering and Ariana Klay

 Washington Post