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Plane Truths

The recent expansion of Navy training activities in the Northwest has many local residents concerned. Will more of our communities become collateral damage?

Community members on Whidbey Island, the San Juans, and the Olympic Peninsula are disturbed by an increase in noise caused by new EA-18G 'Growler' jets based at Naval Air Station Whidbey (NAS) — and a significant proposed expansion of daily Growler test flights. On Whidbey, communities have been additionally impacted by water system pollution caused by chemicals (PFOA and PFOS) used for firefighting on NAS landing strips.

PLANE TRUTHS explores a variety of perspectives on these issues from farmers, current and retired military personnel, environmentalists and other citizens of the affected areas. Viewers will learn how the noise of the Growler jets has affected daily life and business operations in many communities, the regional environmental impacts of expanded Growler flights and newly approved Navy training in Olympic National Forest, potential economic ramifications of increased Navy activity and associated population growth, and the status of — and Navy response to — water system pollution on Whidbey Island.

'Plane Truths bores deeply into the 'war zone' created by a Navy training site amidst rural farms, marine reserves and Olympia National Park in the state of Washington. The film, which explores all sides of this human and ecological tragedy - justified in the name of national defense - is ideal for classroom instruction, debate and strategic community planning.' Patricia Hynes, Professor Emerita of Environmental Health, Boston University, Director, Traprock Center for Peace and Justice

'America's dirty secret is being exposed only through stories like Whidbey Island. Our addiction to the Pentagon is destroying communities. Plane Truths helps to uncover American-style-militarism and its devastating impact on ordinary citizens.' Will Griffin, Veterans For Peace, The Peace Report

'Plane Truths is brilliant...simmering...Coupeville is like literally hundreds of other places around the US and the world where military operations have polluted the community's water, assaulted its ears with deafening aircraft noises, and inserted war games into parks and onto beaches. Pentagon planners who launched the assault on Coupeville now face their anger and organized resistance.' Catherine Lutz, Professor of Anthropology and International Studies, Brown University, Author, Homefront: A Military City and the American Twentieth Century

'Plane Truths is a powerful and beautifully made film that I wish could be publicly screened at the volume of a Navy jet without the health damage such volume causes. World Beyond War will look forward to planning events around this film.' David Swanson, Director, World Beyond War, Author, War Is A Lie and When the World Outlawed War

'Concern over growing contamination by firefighting foams has galvanized many communities to seek testing, cleanup, alternative water sources, regulations, and phase-outs of these hazardous chemicals. Washington State residents also deal with the noise pollution and potential crash zones from Navy training exercises, making for an interesting and complex challenge. Plane Truths does a great job of showing the potential of a community alliance working through these challenges through the voices of every kind of affected person as they seek justice and safety.' Phil Brown, Professor of Sociology and Health Sciences, Director of the Social Science Environmental Health Research Institute, Northeastern University

'An important film revealing the human and environmental damage caused by daily training by the U.S. Navy in the otherwise gorgeous setting of Washington state's Puget Sound and San Juan Islands. Jet noise loud enough to cause hearing loss, drinking water contamination, and underwater noise pollution dangerous to whales and other sea life are among the harms suffered by locals. So far, the Navy seems to have callously ignored protests demanding it protect local safety and security -- although this film is a helpful demand for change.' David Vine, Associate Professor of Anthropology, American University, Author, Base Nation: How U. S. Military Bases Abroad Harm America and the World


Main credits

Young, Melissa (film producer)
Young, Melissa (interviewer)

Other credits

Photographer/editor, Mark Dworkin.

Docuseek2 subjects

Distributor subjects

Global Issues
Mental Health
Toxic Chemicals
War and Peace


pivot to asia, navy base, Whidbey Island, collateral damage, militarization, Navy training activities, San Juan Islands, Olympic Peninsula, EA-18G Growler jets, water pollution, PFOA, PFOS, firefighting on NAS landing strips, farmers, military personnel, environmentalists, noise pollution, expanded flights, Navy SEALs training in Olympic National Forest, economic ramifications, communities affected; "Plane Truths"; Bullfrog Films

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