Film review: 5 broken cameras

Hot Docs Trailers 2012: 5 BROKEN CAMERAS


4 March 2013. A World to Win News Service. 5 Broken Cameras, the first Palestinian documentary nominated for an Oscar, gives an overwhelming depiction of the injustice and brutality on a massive scale against the residents of a village called Bilin in the West Bank. Israeli settlers exude entitlement as they move into new apartments on the hilltops surrounding Bilin, settlements on land stolen from Belin farmers. Not only are Belin’s inhabitants viciously assaulted and oppressed but even the olive trees that are supposedly left to them are burned by brazen settlers or uprooted by the army using armoured construction machinery.

Starting in 2005 and filming over a period of five years with a succession of five cameras destroyed one after another by Israeli soldiers or settlers, Emad Burnat, a farmer turned amateur filmmaker, documented the protests against the land seizures by the Israeli government and the wall under construction that occupies and will separate them from their farmland. Despite great personal risk, he continued filming from a sense of moral obligation to his people and the desire to make the world aware of the struggle to save their land. In 2009 Burnat enlisted the aid of Israeli activist and filmmaker Guy Davidi to help make the film.

The film won many prizes worldwide, in Europe and in the U.S. at the Sundance Film Festival. That this documentary did not win an Oscar is not surprising in a climate where the reactionary feature film Argo received the award for the best picture of the year. Despite having an official invitation to attend the Academy Awards ceremony, when Emad Burnat, his wife and youngest son Gibreel landed in Los Angeles, they were detained and almost deported by U.S. immigration officials until filmmaker Michael Moore intervened and called in Academy lawyers. Continue reading

Israeli army uses tear gas on demonstration against Apartheid Wall

Three civilians, including a child, injured as dozens suffer tear gas inhalation in weekly Bil’in demonstration


Bil’in – Ramallah: Three protesters were injured from tear gas inhalation today at the weekly Bil’in demonstration against the Apartheid wall. The march, called for by the Popular Committee Against the Wall in Bil’in, included dozens of Palestinian villagers, alongside Israeli and international solidarity activists.

The participants in the march waved Palestinian flags, and held pictures of prisoners of the popular resistance, whilst chanting slogans condemning the Israeli policies of occupation, settlement and the repression of Palestinian prisoners held in Israeli jails. The demonstrators also chanted in condemnation of Israel’s policy of ethnic cleansing Palestinians from Jerusalem, as can be seen in Silwan and Sheikh Jarrah, as well as calling for the siege on Gaza to be lifted.

The Popular Committee Against the Wall in Bil’in also denounced the persecution of its activists, led by Abdullah Abo Rahma and Adeeb Abo Rahma. It considers the trials against them biased as they are defenders of their land which was illegally annexed by the Apartheid Wall. The Popular Committee considers the struggle against the wall a legitimate and legal one and calls upon the international community and international human rights organizations to stand next to the leaders and activists of the Popular resistance. Continue reading