What do you think Israel could do to move things beyond the current impasse?
Samira - I definately do not think it contributes to peace and just seems like propaganda. I would like to know how you would answer the same question you asked it is showed - a group of Palestinains climbing on bussesone after another and blowing themselves up....
These imagines are part of the reason peace is so hard to come by today. Like i said it has no place in a site trying to promote peace.
What Israel could do? Stop everything that is illegal.Dismantle the settlements, stop all unnecessary violence. Treat Palestinians as equal and valuable human beings, as well as their children.
Create a real democracy in Israel proper. ....
Jeff, Samira and Sussan,
The question Jeff poses about whether this video belongs on a peace site is, I think, a legitmate one.
This film is very well made, and I would say it is an effective peace of agitprop. But what do I mean by effective?
For one thing, it is fairly schematic. The hyperphallic Israeli soldier shoots coldly, dispassionately; his first victim is a woman, symbolizing the abject state of the Palestinian people; her gender magnifies the criminality of his act. The courage of the Palestinians is shown by their continued determination to keep the national struggle alive (the flag) by taking up the banner each time it falls. At the end of the film, the Palestinian cause prevails, as the world of the banlieues unites under the slogan of "We are all Palestinians." Remarkably, France/Europe is left out--it is clear the struggle for the liberation of Palestine will be brought about when the many downtrodden peoples of the earth unite. The world of the capitalists will not come to their aid. We see the steps of the Israeli retreat, but we do not know where he will retreat, or if there is even a place for him to retreat to.
The simple dichotomy of evil/good allows the second strength of the film to show through: its appeal to the feelings. As a viewer, I am angered by the cruel indifference of the soldier, and am outraged by the elimination of the beautiful and innocent young. My emotions are involved--I want to jump out of the chair and take up the banner for the Palestinian cause.
So now the question becomes: how will this film function on a site like mepeace? Will it promote a readiness in people to engage in discussions with those on the proverbial other side? Will it reinforce the fears and prejudices held by people on either side? Will it encourage critical thought? Will viewers simply react emotionally, either supporting or rejecting its message?
I beleive myself that the struggle between Israel and Palestine is very complex, and this complexity cannot be reflected in an agitprop film--that is not the function of such a film. I also worry about a film that would evoke strong feelings, pro or con. What I hope a site like mepeace would foster is empathy and compassion, because these are the emotional feelings that have been brutalized by generations of warfare.
A new theory of cruelty will be published shortly by Simon Baron-Cohen, a psychologist who works with autistic children. Cruelty, he argues, is linked to an incapacity for empathy and compassion. Will this film promote empathy and compassion? Those really are what is necessary for a peace process to ultimately succeed. Those are what we need to promote.
Thank you, Clara. I didn't think that I needed to give such an analysis - I thought that it was obvious.
Of course these young people are symbols - the video simply says: Whatever violence you use, we will not stop to dream and to do everything in our power to get our right. For each person who falls, another one continues. They also symbolize the quite recent non-violent uprisings that go on in the Arab world and is also coming to Palestine.
Gaza youth breaks out; hunger-strikes in Ramallah. Demonstration with women and kids against bulldozers who cut off their water wells (happening right now near Bethlehem and in other places.
The young people are armed only by the flag - a symbol for their dream of freedom and peace in their own land - run towards the heavily armed occupier. Non-violence is a far bigger threat to any violent regime than armed resistance. The young generation has understood that it's not only important to do it, as previous generations did - meaning that they just waited, stayed, despite the oppression in order not to give up the place where their roots are, where their culture was born, where their ancestors are buried. Stay, despite all. Stay at home.
Now these young people have understood that to make a real change they must show this resistance, this opposition against the injustices committed in Gaza, the West Bank and also in Israel.. They are here, without weapons but NOT passive... And at the end there are just too many young unarmed people around for the occupier to repress them any more...
This video is an affirmation of peace. Stop the violence - get peace.
Like I mentioned before if the same video was flipped around and you saw and Palestinian militant doing the same thing to Israeli's running down the street - would not everyone agree that this does not contribute to peace and just insights hate?