Toronto Film Review: ‘Ready for War’

  • Variety
Three years into the Revolutionary War, a desperate George Washington hired German soldier Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben to drill discipline into his ragtag troops. Von Steuben helped win American independence, and for his service, he was granted U.S. citizenship. Ever since, immigrants have enlisted in the military as a path toward legal status, putting their safety on the line for a shot at the American dream.

The devotion was one-sided. Thanks to a mid-’90s rule change and today’s rising xenophobia, foreign veterans who commit non-violent offenses upon their return to the states are punished three times for the same crime: They’re put in jail, rejected as citizens and deported, often to a county they haven’t seen since they were kids, while being forced to leave their own U.S.-born children behind (not to mention the benefits and medical care they’ve earned).

Take the case of Miguel Perez,
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