Israel’s War Against Palestine: Documenting the Military Occupation of Palestinian and Arab Lands

Open Letter to Mike Leigh

26 October 2010

Gaza Carnage Resources -25 Oct 2010

Dear Mike Leigh,

We are writing to you as a group of fellow filmmakers and academics, Palestinians, Israelis and others, to thank you for your principled and courageous step of withdrawing from the Jerusalem Sam Spiegel Film School workshop and “implicitly” joining the cultural boycott of Israel. As admirers of your work, from Abigail’s Party to Another Year, we have long appreciated your commitment to those sectors of society that are disenfranchised and normally silenced. Now you have actively and openly intervened in defence of Palestinian rights, and we applaud you for doing so publicly. You have joined the growing ranks of artists and cultural producers who are refusing to lend their name and prestige to the cover-up of a brutal occupation, already more than four decades old.

Your action also challenges the long silence of most of Israel’s artists and intellectuals who have, unfortunately, been co-opted into the broad Israeli social coalition that supports the brutalities visited by Israel on the Palestinians. Some of those will certainly feel threatened by your stand; we feel supported by it. If a just peace is to be ever achieved in Palestine, Jews elsewhere have to stand together in support of the full rights of the Palestinians. Your action is striking evidence of growing cultural resistance abroad to Israel’s intransigence. We hope it will encourage others. Only by such concerted action will the situation change in the Middle East.

Thank you, Mike!

Signed by:

Hany Abu Assad – Filmmaker
Udi Aloni – Filmmaker
Oreet Asheri – Artist and researcher
Saleh Bakri – Filmmaker
Avia Ben David – Scriptwriter
Prof. Oren Ben-Dor
Simone Bitton – Filmmaker
Rani Blair – Director
Prof. Haim Bresheeth – Filmmaker
Shai Carmeli Pollak
Scandar Copti – Filmmaker
Anat Even – Filmmaker
Angela Godfrey-Goldstein – Actress
Ala Hlehel
Annemarie Jacir – Director
Prof. Ronit Lentin
Yael Lerer
Prof. Yosefa Loshitzky
Dr. Orly Lubin
Prof. Moshé Machover
Miriam Margolyes – Actress
Audrey Maurion Film Editor
Idit Nathan
Prof. Mica Nava
Osama Qashoo – Director
Prof. Steven Rose
Prof. Hilary Rose
Prof. Jonathan Rosenhead
Daniel Rubinstein
Prof. Ella Shohat
Eyal Sivan – Filmmaker
Ula Tabari – Actress
Yosi Wanunu – Theatre director
Einat Weizman – Actress

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