Re: Toronto Film Fest

From: Boughton Jason (email suppressed)
Date: Sat Aug 29 2009 - 10:06:24 PDT

That didn't take long.

I remember a few months ago, that long discussion that started with
some list member protesting the flogging of liberal talking points in
this, the space of pure art and it's contemplation? That was a stupid
discussion. This has the makings a stupid discussion as well. Of
course the craven attempts by Israel to engage in lifestyle marketing
on it's own behalf should be condemned, and then ignored. And those of
us who support the autonomy of Palestinians should exploit every
opportunity for effective antagonisms which manifest that support.
But this line is just silly:

> It is a cynical and immoral politicization of the TIFF.”

Of course the TIFF should be ignored - not for the politics found
there, but for the emptiness of it's politics. And yes, of course,
some Palestinians are terrorists. No shit, genius.

the Invisible Losers

On Aug 29, 2009, at 12:29 PM, Peter Rosen wrote:

> Palestinians are terrorists
> Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile
> From: Matt Helme
> Date: Sat, 29 Aug 2009 08:23:34 -0700
> To: <email suppressed>
> Subject: Toronto Film Fest
> *Please Post Widely*
> Protest Toronto International Film Festival City-to-City Spotlight
> on Tel Aviv:
> TIFF Celebrating Israeli colonialism, ethnic cleansing and apartheid!
> Dear CAIA allies and supporters,
> We urge you to write to the Toronto International Film Festival
> protesting its
> decision to Spotlight Tel Aviv for its inaugural City-to-City
> program. The
> Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel
> issued a statement urging all filmmakers and audiences to boycott this
> Spotlight on Tel Aviv. For the full PACBI statement please see:
> As the PACBI statement points out:
> “The ‘diversity’ celebrated by the Spotlight is in fact based on the
> erasure of the physical presence of the Palestinians, their culture,
> heritage
> and memory. The adjacent Palestinian city of Jaffa and numerous
> villages were
> emptied of their indigenous inhabitants to make way for Tel Aviv.
> Many refugees
> from Jaffa and other destroyed villages that Tel Aviv replaced
> reside in
> Toronto today, denied the right to return to their homes.
> Such a celebration at this time, therefore, can only be seen by
> Palestinians
> and supporters of a just peace around the world as an act of
> complicity in
> whitewashing Israel’s war crimes and other grave violations of
> international
> law. It is a cynical and immoral politicization of the TIFF.”
> Please send letters of protest to TIFF co-director and City-to-City
> programmer
> at email suppressed
> A sample letter is provided below, though it is always better to
> draft your own
> original letter.
> For more information please email us at: email suppressed
> In Solidarity,
> Coalition Against Israeli Apartheid
> Re: City-to-City Spotlight on Tel Aviv
> I am writing to you out of my concern about the Toronto
> International Film
> Festival’s City-to-City spotlight on Tel Aviv.
> According to your website, the spotlight “will showcase the complex
> currents
> running through today’s Tel Aviv. Celebrating its 100th birthday in
> 2009, Tel
> Aviv is a young, dynamic city that, like Toronto, celebrates its
> diversity”.
> Nowhere in this description of Tel Aviv is there mention of the fact
> that Tel
> Aviv is built on destroyed Palestinian villages. In 1948, the
> inhabitants of
> these villages were forcibly removed in order to make room for the
> city of Tel
> Aviv. Today, many of the former inhabitants of these villages and
> Tel Aviv’s
> neighbouring city of Jaffa reside in Toronto because they are
> refugees who have
> been denied the right to return to their homes.
> In addition to ignoring Palestinian history, the spotlight is also
> part of an
> Israeli propaganda campaign known as ‘Brand Israel’. In 2008, Israel
> chose
> Toronto as a test city for ‘Brand Israel’. This campaign is an
> effort by
> the Israeli government to improve its image globally. The campaign’s
> goal is
> to draw attention toward Israel’s medical, scientific and cultural
> accomplishments in order to shift attention away from its numerous
> crimes
> against the Palestinian people. The ‘Brand Israel’ campaign is a
> blatant
> example of how Israeli cultural institutions play a vital role in
> whitewashing
> Israeli war crimes. Israeli consul general Amir Gissin said that the
> culmination of the campaign would be a major Israeli presence at the
> 2009
> Toronto International Film Festival. Whether or not TIFF sees it
> this way, the
> City-to-City program is being viewed by the Israeli state as an
> important
> aspect of its international propaganda campaign.
> This past winter the world watched in horror as Israel launched a
> full-scale
> military assault on the people of Gaza. Over 1400 Palestinians were
> killed in
> this attack, including over 400 children. TIFF showcasing Tel Aviv
> and Israel
> is equivalent to the festival choosing to showcase Cape Town at the
> height of
> South African Apartheid. It is simply unacceptable and inexcusable.
> In support of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural
> Boycott of
> Israel (PACBI) statement calling for a boycott of the Spotlight, I
> will not be
> attending any of these films and will be encouraging others to do
> the same. I
> strongly urge TIFF to reconsider its celebration of Tel Aviv and
> Israel – a
> state that has been described as an Apartheid regime by prominent
> figures such
> as South African Bishop Desmond Tutu and former US President Jimmy
> Carter.
> __________________________________________________________________
> For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.

For info on FrameWorks, contact Pip Chodorov at <email suppressed>.