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America’s political hangover following the Vietnam War played out in movie theaters. Films like “M*A*S*H,” “Born on the Fourth of July,” “Deer Hunter” and “Apocalypse Now” explored that war’s ambitions and blinkered delusions as well as the blood and treasure squandered in the name of controlling the spread of communism.

A similar debate is raging right now over America’s misadventures in Iraq and Afghanistan, and once more, Hollywood and flicks like “Zero Dark Thirty” and “The Hurt Locker” are at the center of it. But none yet has raised the political hackles of the left and right as effectively as Clint Eastwood’s “American Sniper.” Its portrayal of U.S. Navy Seal Chris Kyle, the deadliest sniper in U.S. military history has pundits and pols on both sides jabbing at one another: was this man a hero or a highly skilled psychopath? Was our invasion of Iraq a noble quest to “fight evil” or an historic foreign-policy blunder?