I just saw a special preview of “Budrus,” a memorable documentary film, produced by “Just Vision,” about the struggle of a West Bank village to non-violently resist the encroachments of Israel’s security/separation barrier upon its land. Celebrated in a recent NY Times column by Nicholas Kristof, it will have a wider commercial release in October.
At first, I feared that “Budrus” was not properly showing the reason for Israel’s erection of this barrier; but it did eventually explain that it was a defensive reaction to the hundreds of civilians killed and many others wounded in terrorist attacks launched from the West Bank during the intifada of the early 2000’s. Although its sympathy is properly with the Palestinians struggling to safeguard their property and their way of life, the film always maintains a respectful perspective on Israel’s needs to defend its citizens. The basic decency and humanity of the people of Budrus and their Israeli-Jewish allies shine through.
Above all, this hopeful film reveals little-known aspects of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict:
- how Israel’s separation barrier impinges upon the lives and property of Palestinians living along it;
- how a growing movement of non-violent resistance has risen up and obtained a measure of success;
- the fact that some Israelis and Palestinians are acting in concert to foster peaceful coexistence and mutual respect.
Yes, odd isn’t it Ralph, that Meretz has had nothing to do with this growing nonviolent movement of Palestinians and their Israeli supporters (other than now showing up and trying to take over Sheikh Jarrah protests, as documented by Joseph Dana). Note that the events in Budrus date to 2003, and Meretz appears to be just waking up to it now. Why is that Meretz, the supposed Israeli left, has been so oblivious to this nonviolent struggle for Palestinian rights? Wouldn’t most real “left” groups have thrown their support behind such a movement years ago (without trying to take it over)?
The malice issuing forth with monotonous regularity from our old friend Ted, obscures the fact that there may be a valid point here. But this comment more properly fit into the previous blog post of the bloggers’ meeting with heads of Meretz.
Their complaint also answers Ted: that Meretz is a small political party that may have by choice or necessity overly focused upon parliamentary action.
Joseph Dana’s blog post is so full of venom regarding “Zionism” that it’s hard to know if Dana can be taken seriously. And there’s an irony here: Ted complains that Meretz has not participated in struggles like Budrus, while Dana complains that it has taken over the Sheikh Jarrah protests. These “evil Zionists” are so unpredictable.