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.