At the end of the film, Waldens daughter receives the Medal of Honor and Serling finally tells the family of the officer who was killed how he was killed.
Telling the truth was one of the ethical situations present in the film. For Serling it was about telling the truth about what happened to his mission when he was in the Gulf War. Should he admit to how Boylar, the officer who was the casualty of the friendly fire, died or should he keep quiet? For Monfriez, Altameyer and Ilario, it was telling the truth about what happened when they went on their rescue mission and what went on between Monfriez and Captain Walden. It was also living with the fact that their lie led to the death of a colleague and that they left her even when ethics call for them not to leave any man or woman behind.
Serling had to decide whether to tell the truth and owe to his actions in the Gulf War that led to the death of Boylar and admit that the military has covered up truth about it. In the end, he decided to tell the Boylars what happened. Altameyer and Monfriez decided to lie to the rescue team and leave Capt. Walden to die. In the end, Altameyer chose to escape from his experiences by staying in the hospital and sedating himself, meanwhile Monfriez chose to commit suicide than be held accountable for his actions.
Ilario chose to tell the truth.
They all have different reasons for the choices they made. Their consciences brought them all great pain but they chose to respond to it differently. Serling chose to clean his act and clear his conscience in order to live a more peaceful life with his family. Monfriez chose to die because he could not live with the thought that what he did will be known. Ilario did what he did because he could not live with the consequence of his silence when they left Walden in the battlefield. If I were in their situation, I would have chosen to tell the truth because it would burden me more to live a lie; people deserve to know the truth and I have to face up to the consequences of my actions. With this movie, I learned that people have different ways of looking at things but what is the right thing to do is the one thing that stays true. However, recognizing the ethical thing to do can be a difficult task at times.
Davis, J., Singer, J.M., & Friendly, D.T. (Producer), & Zwick, E. (Director). (1996).
Courage Under Fire [Motion picture]. United States of America: 20th Century Fox.
Prado, C.G. (2006). Ethics and Morality. Retrieved from http://personalethics.suite101.com/article.cfm/ethicsandmorality.