The list of Iraqi men and women who worked alongside Americans as translators and advisors during the U.S.-led war in Iraq is long, and goes well into the tens of thousands. Now that the U.S. troops have pulled out of Iraq, these people and their families face death threats from Al Qaeda-affiliated groups and Iraqi insurgents who see them as collaborators with the enemy.
The U.S. government doesn’t know the exact number of Iraqis on this list because it has not bothered to keep track or to come up with any list of their own to help those who literally risked their lives to support the U.S. mission. But Kirk Johnson keeps his own list of some 3,000 such cases, and he has worked feverishly for four years with a small army of scores of pro bono lawyers to highlight the plight of these Iraqi men and women and to try to win them asylum in the U.S.
And Johnson’s un-daunting effort is documented by award-winning filmmaker Beth Murphy in her new film, “The List,” which had its world premiere to favorable reviews at New York’s Tribeca Film Festival in 2012.