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American Sniper True or Myth?

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Mrs.B

English 11

February 14, 2017

American Sniper true or myth ?

The movie American Sniper is a film released in December of 2014, directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Bradley cooper as the main character Chris Kyle. The movie is an autobiography about the life of U.S NAVY S.E.A.L Chris Kyle from his early life until his death. The movie starts off with a few scenes about his childhood and starts to go deeper into his teenage years where he sought out to become a cowboy. In his thirties he found that his life needed more and that there was more to life than just becoming a cowboy so he set out to join the SEALs to become a sniper. While helping in the fight against terrorism in Iraq he quickly gained popularity for being one of the best snipers around and saving countless soldier and civilian lives. After he returns home Kyle comes into conflict with resorting back to his normal everyday life. The movie American is a good source of history because it includes real events that happened and the movie is based off of the book American sniper which is an autobiography by Chris Kyle himself written with Scott McEwen and Jim DeFelice.

Early in his life Chris Kyle strived to become an American cowboy in his home state of Texas, and rode throughout much of his teenage years and his college years. According to his autobiography "American Sniper" Kyle started riding horses and bulls in high school and also continued riding after college . In the movie one of the beginning scenes of the movie shows Chris riding a bull in a local rodeo. After joining the SEALs he quickly gained popularity and a rep became one of the most deadly snipers in U.S history. The movie states that Chris Kyle obtained 160 confirmed kills while serving his time in the U.S NAVY. After some research I found that by the Pentagon's count, U.S. Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle had at least 160 confirmed kills during four tours in Iraq between 2003 and 2009 (TIME.com). Also I found that the movie states that Chris Kyle joined the U.S Navy around the age of thirty and that he was encouraged to join the fight against terrorism because of the 1998 bombing of the U.S embassies in Iraq. This is untrue in actuality Chris Kyle started his training around age 24 and he joined the military which was his original plan "With my rodeo career ended, I decided that I would quit college, stop ranching, and go back to my original plan: join the military and become a soldier." (American Sniper Kyle, McEwen, DeFelice). He originally applied for the Navy SEALs in 1996 but he was turned down because of his injuries from a recent rodeo accident (American Sniper Kyle, McEwen, DeFelice). The movie American Sniper does have truth behind Chris's early life and has truth behind the number of confirmed kills Chris obtained even though by personal account Chris stated that he had around 255.

In the movie Chris Kyle (Bradley cooper) shoots a boy who is coming out of a building with his mother, and the boy is carrying a grenade and is moving towards a U.S marine convoy. This is not a true expression of the situation that occurred, in actuality Chris shot a woman who was carrying a grenade and was moving towards a U.S marine convoy. Kyle writes "the only time I killed anyone other than a male combatant". Also in the American sniper book, Kyle states that this was his first kill while he was stationed in Iraq, this hold true in the movie even though the victim was a woman in reality the situation was the same in real life and in the movie. Chris does take aim at a child who picked up an RPG in the movie and in real life but he did not kill the child, "I had a clear view in my scope, but I didn't fire. I wasn't going to kill a kid, innocent or not. I'd have to wait until the savage who put him up to it showed himself on the street." (American Sniper Kyle, McEwen, DeFelice). These situations are common in countries with terrorist issues, often women and children are targeted and forced to carry bombs and weapons and are forced to try to cause harm to American soldiers. In these situations soldiers are forced to kill these suicide bombers because if not then more than just the suicide bomber will die or be hurt. Another big connection between the movie and reality is that Jeff, Chris's younger brother played by Keir O'Donnell was also a marine. In the movie Chris catches up to his brother who has been traumatized by the things he has seen in Iraq but in the book Chris shows no recollection of his brother cursing the war. In the movie Chris Kyle has a bounty on his head of 180,000 dollars, in reality

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