Be Warriors: Marine recruitment on PBS

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The Marines, a Feb. 21 documentary directed by former PBS program exec John Grant, prompted many viewers to write to PBS Ombudsman Michael Getler using phrases such as “propagandistic paean,” “utter piece of garbage,” and “infomercial . . . recruiting our youngsters to the ‘warrior ethos’ of the Marines.” In his weekly webcolumn, Getler agreed with the film’s critics. “I felt as though PBS was the willing victim of friendly fire from the producers and, especially, the funders on this one and didn’t take any visible action to protect itself,” he wrote. “This is really a very well done testimonial and recruiting film masquerading as a documentary.”