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FEATURING STEPHANIE ABRAHAM – A new war-themed film just out in theaters repeats the tired trope of memorializing the heroism of US soldiers over the victims of war, except that in the case of Megan Leavey, a female soldier in Iraq is at the center along with her relationship to a dog named Rex. The film has been described as a, “touching, refreshingly apolitical military drama as a young Marine recruit … finds her calling as a dog handler.”

But how can the Iraq war, where US soldiers claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians, ever be “apolitical”? The desire to sanitize war, and even see it as a backdrop for feminism and women’s empowerment is what jumps out from Megan Leavey.

Stephanie Abraham is a writer and media critic, she helped found the feminist magazine make/shift and was the founding editor of the feminist magazine LOUDmouth. Her works have been published in McSweeney’s, Al Jazeera, Mizna and Bitch Magazine. She is the Pop Culture Correspondent and Film Critic for Rising Up With Sonali.

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