Gandhi film plays to Palestinians

April 8th, 2005  

Topic: Gandhi film plays to Palestinians


"Our dream is a year from now, we will have 5,000, no, 20,000 Gandhis. Young Gandhis. Palestinian Gandhis"
--Kamran Elahian

Even One would be a Great Achivement

Source:BBC News

The award-winning 1982 film Gandhi is being released across the West Bank and Gaza to try to persuade Palestinians to embrace non-violent resistance.

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas (rights) backs the film's distribution

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and actor Ben Kingsley, who starred as the pacifist Indian leader in the film, attended the premiere in Ramallah.

The project is being co-sponsored by Jeff Skoll, the founder of the internet auction site EBay.

Reports say some Palestinians who saw the film were largely sceptical.

The epic film about non-violent resistance to British rulers in India will be shown in free screenings in the Palestinian territories, including refugee camps that are strongholds for militants and armed groups.

The film will also be shown to Palestinians in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan and be distributed on DVD to youth groups.

Powerful theme

Mr Skoll said the initiative had the backing of the Palestinian leadership.

"We met with President Abbas, who was nice to us and supported the project," he told the audience in Ramallah.

Kamran Elahian, an Iranian-American businessman who helped produce the Arabic-language version of the film, said its central theme remains relevant.

"The message [of the movie] is fresh. People should and will be affected by it."

But many of those who saw the film were unconvinced.

"There are too many differences," said 21-year-old Dea Opahi. "If we stopped resisting Israel, it would probably confiscate all the land left to us."

Mr Elhanian however believed Palestinians could follow Gandhi's example.

"Our dream is a year from now, we will have 5,000, no, 20,000 Gandhis. Young Gandhis. Palestinian Gandhis," he said.
April 8th, 2005  
Charge 7
I doubt it will be much help, but if it changes only one heart it will be worth it.
April 8th, 2005  
Anyone remember the exact quote from Sum of All Fears by Tom Clancy? When Israel accidentally killed a nonviolent Palestinian protestor, it was something like, "Them them that somebody just figured out how to destroy Israel." The problem with the way that it has been done by Palestinians up to now is simple: Their extremist groups lead much of the world to see their people as a bunch of murdering lunatics, frothing at the mouth or whatever you like. It makes Israel look the longsuffering parent of an insane child.

Nonviolent protest is the most painfully obvious thing that Palestinians will never bother trying. Even if they did ... the extremists will never stop bombing and murdering so it would not get the desired effect at all.

If the fundamentalist terrorist organizations ceased to exist and Palestinians adopted nonviolent protest, they would have a MUCH stronger posistion to work from. We can put that on the list of great ideas that will never happen.