Without Warning

Without Warning

A soldier returned from Afghanistan tells his tale... and then we see the surprising rest of the story.

When Jody Mitic first enlisted more than a decade ago, he says army was “a four-letter word.” With the increasing opposition to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is unusual to hear the calm voice of the Canadian soldier speaking of the support he finds in the public for men and women in uniform. In this presentation from the Toronto Star, the former sniper says he has returned to find the climate has changed. Now, the master-corporal says Canadians have a new-found respect for their military, largely due to the conflict in Afghanistan. He is very at ease and proud of the work he did there, to the degree that just talking about it he says he notices a rising adrenaline rush.

What’s remarkable about this video, however, is that you are lulled into thinking it’s just another “talking head” account of a veteran’s experience… until we encounter a subtle but shocking image that the former soldier never even mentioned. An intelligently nuanced piece like this reminds us of how and why some stories are best told visually. It’s one thing to hear the vet say, “I think I’ve changed a little bit.” It’s another to witness the visual juxtaposition that shows that change, giving the piece’s title another layer of meaning.

Length: 4:50

Video project: Randy Risling
Still photography: Rick Madonik, Tory Zimmerman