The highly controversial film Jenin, Jenin, directed by Palestinian, Mohammad Bakri is being screened at the Tel Aviv University branch of Hadash, this coming Wednesday. Well needless to say many TAU students are vehemently opposed, including the on campus organization, ‘Im Tirtzu’.
Im Tirtzuâ€™s Director-General Amit Barak said:
â€œAs is known, a group of reservists who fought in Jenin and buried their comrades at the end of the fighting filed a civil suit against Bakri for his fallacious film, which slanders and accuses IDF soldiers of executing a massacre and war crimes in Jenin. It has been brought to our attention that Hadash activists plan on screening the film and its fraudulent blood libel as part of an evening of incitement and slander against the State of Israel.â€
Students involved with Im Tirtzu wrote a letter to Tel Aviv University President Professor Yosef Klafter:
â€œWe, as students and as a state, must not fall victim to the deceptions and lies of cheaters, in the likes of Mohammad Bakri. The revered principle of freedom of speech has nothing to do with the freedom Bakri took for himself to incite, to make false accusations of blood libels, and to sully IDF soldiers.â€
Tel Aviv University issued a response that read:
â€œWe are screening the film. We are acting in accordance with the High Court decision that has authorized the screening of Jenin, Jenin.â€
Recently Attorney General Menachem Mazuz decided against issuing an indictment for slander against the filmâ€™s director. However, Mazuz insisted that he supports the soldiers in their civil suit against Bakri.
Jenin, Jenin, is a 54-minute documentary (featured in its entirety below). It was originally featured at the International Documentary Film festival (IDFA) in Amsterdam, in 2002. Bakri says that the film is about “human suffering as such – about a wounded soul, a demolished home, a felled tree, a picked flower, a broken heart.”
His previous documentary, “1948”, recorded testimonies of the Palestinian collective memory. This one documents the “atrocities” in April 2000, by the IDF in a Jenin refugee camp.