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Sneak preview: War documentary series ‘Chain of Command’ shows U.S. forces in today’s fight

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It’s hard to understand what our deployed men and women are doing to combat violent extremism. We hear about this fight daily in the news, but let’s face it – these are extremely complicated matters, and the American public often doesn’t have a full understanding of it.

That’s why the Defense Department partnered with National Geographic Channel on a new eight-part documentary series called “Chain of Command.” It offers unprecedented access to the men and women fighting extremism, including Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Watch the “Chain of Command” trailer here:

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From the innermost sanctums of the Pentagon to the front lines across the globe, the new series is all about what daily life is like for our service members in the fight. It even gains access to the cockpit of a fighter jet on a mission, as well as a former jihad supporter who’s able to explain the mindset of an extremist.

I recently viewed the first episode and talked to showrunner (aka, executive producer) Scott Boggins.

“There hasn’t been a documentary series ever done on this scope before,” Boggins said about the show, which was filmed in real time from the end of 2016, when the Battle for Mosul in Iraq was just beginning, to now. Filming is still going on and is expected to wrap up this month.

Through talking with Boggins, here are some of the things I’ve learned you can expect from the series:

There’s a reason why it’s called “Chain of Command.”

Viewers will see firsthand how decisions made at the Pentagon have a direct effect on service members on the ground who are fighting to protect the U.S. and its allies from violent extremists.

But it’s really about the human element.

“It’s about the men and women who are deployed and in the middle of a mission. That was our central focus,” Boggins said.

The goal: find a way for viewers to relate.

“Looking through their eyes, then you can maybe get a sense of understanding for the larger issues,” Boggins said. That includes relationships with coalition partners.

Soldier launches drone in the National Geographic series “Chain of Command.” (Courtesy of National Geographic)

Take the fight to defeat ISIS in Mosul, for example. While the general public hears about the U.S. collaboration with Iraqi forces to defeat ISIS, it’s something we really can’t comprehend. During the first episode of “Chain of Command,” producers really focused on the teamwork and friendships that grew between Iraqi forces and U.S. troops.

“That was one of our biggest things: it wasn’t good enough just to say it. It was very important for us to show it,” Boggins said. “They’re … trying to help them help themselves and fight their own wars against this threat.”

Soldiers packed into a transport plane from the National Geographic series “Chain of Command.” (Courtesy of National Geographic)

It required LOTS of time.

Production crews really had to embed with the units on the ground to get them to lower their guard.

“It takes weeks and weeks and weeks of just being with them, because it takes a long time for people to just feel comfortable with the cameras … to let us in,” Boggins said.

The Pentagon helped producers get into some high, sensitive areas, too.

There’s been a LOT of footage and info to sort through.
Boggins equated the massive production to putting together a puzzle.

“We’re following a story that is continually being written … and we’re doing it with characters around the world,” he said. “When we get to post-production and the edits, we try to piece it together for every full episode.”

You’ll probably recognize the voice of the narrator. Movie actor Chris Evans, who is the latest star to wear the Captain America uniform in that franchise and in “The Avengers” films, narrates the episodes.

“Chain of Command” premieres Monday, Jan. 15 at 9/8 Central and will air on AFN Spectrum beginning Jan. 20 at 5 p.m.

Big League National Security

SICK: Keith Olbermann Calls for President Trump to Receive “Death Penalty”

Un-American.

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Former MSNBC commentator turned deranged liberal fanatic Keith Olbermann called for the killing of President Donald Trump in the latest of his YouTube rants on Tuesday, stating that the President should receive the death penalty for every “charge” of Americans who have died of coronavirus.

This would add up to 200,000 unique death penalties.

Olbermann made the demand in a charged rant- his exclusive mode of communication in recent years- in which he exclusively blamed the President for the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

Twitter has previously said that it would ban or suspend those that call for the President’s death in the context of his coronavirus diagnosis. Olbermann is taking it a step further- actively calling for his execution- but as of Tuesday night, his verified Twitter account appears wholly funcitonal and unimpeded.

As Olbermann specifically blames President Trump for the impact of the global disease, he seems to be ignoring the reality that daily coronavirus deaths in Europe are now rising above those in the United States, and that it’s more than likely the “progressive” European Union will incur more coronavirus deaths per capita than the US has.

The President, or any political leader, is not God, and the ultimate effects of a novel viral disease are determined by variables largely outside of human control. Olbermann has descended into the hysteria of the bizarre “believe science” liberal religion, while largely ignoring the scientific reality on the capabilities of world leaders to simply “turn off” the coronavirus disease.

It’s generally poor form to speculate on the mental faculties of public figures- including partisan political personalities- but this kind of vengeful sentiment may indicate a personality disorder on the one that expresses it.

There’s no word as to a potential Secret Service investigation into the hysterical MSNBC alumni as of yet.

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