Decisions, Decisions in “Eye in the Sky”

To eliminate the target, or not to eliminate the target?, that is the question. A victory for terrorism is like a slap in the face to our government. After rampage shootings or suicide bombings citizens ask, “How come nothing was done to prevent this from happening?” or “Somebody had to have known, right?” In Eye in the Sky, governments are finally one step ahead of the terrorists and have the opportunity to eliminate four terrorist targets before they can potentially strike and kill innocents. The only thing preventing these high ranking military and political advisors from enacting a crucial decision that could potentially save innocent lives is a young girl who sells bread directly outside the compound walls of the target.

Eye in Sky Hellen Mirren
British Colonel Powell (Helen Mirren) assess the target

The terrorists have all been confirmed as targets 2, 4, and 5 on the east African and British most wanted list, sitting like happy little ducks in a house in Nairobi, while strapping explosives onto an American recruited suicide bomber. They are all right there, lined up in the cross hairs and ready to be destroyed through the use of a hellfire missile sent from an American guided drone hovering above Kenya. Opportunities to eliminate most wanted terrorists like these four assholes rarely present themselves so conveniently and the British government and military must act immediately if they want to take full advantage of it. However, nobody can seem to make up their mind. Everyone has rendezvoused at this exact moment and this exact time to witness a surveillance and capture mission, not an assassination. But things changed when the explosive vests came out and the terrorists began to mobilize for an attack. Now is the perfect opportunity to strike before more bodies of innocent civilians show up in homes across the world on the evening news. There cannot be any hesitation. All targets are confirmed, fire when ready…

Eye in Sky Conference Room
British advisors and Lt. General Benson (Alan Rickman) consult from a boardroom

You could say Eye in the Sky is the perfect movie for debate class. It should be watched in middle and high school classrooms alongside videos on Youtube that show the after effects of suicide bombs in crowded public locations, then let the heavily hormone induced students see if they can make an unanimous decision. The lesson at the end of the day will be that there is no such thing as a right decision. Political, legal, and moral arguments against taking the offensive and attacking will always get in the way and Eye in the Sky shows audiences that adults are no better at making decisions than teenagers. Every military and political advisor who ever granted permission to strike, attack, or launch a war knew the outcome for those unlucky civilians caught in the cross fire and the collateral damage inflicted, but they had to justify these deaths to themselves and receive permission from the higher echelons of power. Teenagers do the same thing. They look to those that are older and with more experience when clouded by doubt concerning the tougher decisions in life. There is no right answer. Sometimes you must act in the moment and pray for the best results.


I realize that it’s irrational to simply act without hesitation or without formulating evidence to strengthen a decision. However, it’s painful when hesitation leads to missed opportunities and regret. Our greatest threat today is terrorism. ISIS has grown in size and become the number one threat across the world, yet we make no offensive maneuvers to eliminate them. There is too much debate from government officials. Our diplomatic policy has failed. The ISIS threat is clear and present and immediate and it needs to be acted upon before more innocent lives are lost and more people suffer. We do not need to launch a full scale war, we have our eyes in the sky that can fight our wars for us and do so with impeccable precision and minimal loss of life. It’s hardboiled and cruel to kill in such a convenient and comfortable manner, but would you prefer to wait for ISIS to acquire nuclear weapons or arrive at your doorstep with a machine gun…? Act now or suffer later.


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