When I read that the Pentagon had arranged for screenings of The Battle of Algiers, I assumed that the intention was to warn our commanders about the moral and operational dangers of fighting a counter-insurgency campaign.
Mickey Kaus suggests that the film can be read another way: as endorsing the view that torture is a necessity in counterinsurgency operations.
No doubt that wasn’t the intention of the filmmaker. Perhaps it wasn’t the intention of whoever arranged the screenings. But it might have been the lesson taken home by some of the viewers.