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Occupy San Miguel


By Jim Carey

Gideon Levy, a Haaretz columnist, wrote: “I wish every American would watch this powerful documentary. Not only all persons of conscience but every taxpayer must see it—and then ask themselves if the status quo is acceptable and can continue deep into the 21st century.”

The film Levy refers to, The Occupation of the American Mind: Israel’s Public Relations War in the US, focuses on pro-Israel public relations efforts within the US. Journalist and filmmaker John Pilger has described it as “one of the most compelling and important documentaries in recent years.”

“A fierce new documentary revealing how distorted corporate media coverage of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict amounts to little more than an ongoing, systematic deception of the American public,” this film will be shown Monday at OccupySMA.

For those who rely on US television and press for information, the view of Palestinian life under Israeli occupation shown in the film is deeply shocking. It explores how the Israeli and US governments and the pro-Israel lobby have joined forces—often with diverse motives—to skew American media coverage of the conflict in Israel’s favor. Avi Shlaim, a professor emeritus at Oxford University, calls the film “a remarkable achievement” and says “anyone wishing to understand the deeper reasons for America’s utter failure to bring peace to the region should begin by watching this powerful film.”

A common narrative is that Palestinians want to exterminate Israelis. In 2015, when Ayelet Shaked was appointed Justice Minister in the new Israeli coalition government, she posted on Facebook that “the entire Palestinian people is the enemy.” She justifies the destruction of Palestine¾“including its elderly and its women, its cities and its villages, its property and its infrastructure” and called for the slaughter of Palestinian mothers who give birth to “little snakes.” Uri Elitzur, a former leader of settlers in disputed regions, has made similar comments.

It’s clear that both sides have their extremists. Honest dialogue and diplomacy, not war and oppression, seem the only way out. With Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as its capital, the question arises¾has the US, a protector and supporter of Israel, lost its seat at the table as an impartial witness and broker of true diplomacy and ultimate peace?

The film features leading observers of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and of US media culture. The film provides a sweeping analysis of Israel’s decades-long battle for the hearts, minds, and tax dollars of the American people. All this in the face of widening international condemnation of Israel’s increasingly right-wing policies. It is narrated by Roger Waters, with appearances by Amira Hass, M.J. Rosenberg, Stephen M. Walt, Noam Chomsky, Rula Jebreal, Henry Siegman, Rashid Khalidi, Rami Khouri, Yousef Munayyer, Norman Finkelstein, Max Blumenthal, Phyllis Bennis, Norman Solomon, Mark Crispin Miller, Peter Hart, and Sut Jhally. Join us Monday for the film and an interesting discussion.


Meeting, Film and Discussion

Occupy San Miguel presents

The Occupation of the American Mind: Israel’s Public Relations War in the US

Mon, Mar 5, 1pm

Quinta Loreto Hotel/TV room

Loreto 15




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