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July 07, 2007


Thanks for the review.
The Sabra and Shatilla question was relevant since Lebanon not only used extreme military force to persecute the Palestinians but also laws. Both are complimentary to the policy of forced migration.
As far as naming the perpetrators: the bottom line is: they were Lebanese which was the point of the film (their religious affiliation shouldn't be pointed out since it created extreme fractions within Lebanon - putting a religious label to a crime can cause grave miseries and fractions - take post September 11 for example + religion was never associated with any other part of the film). that is what the filmmaker meant.

THanks Maherah for this clarification. I still think that in retrospect this wasn't spelled out enough, and it set off some of the audience comments that were defensive re: Lebanese. I am not saying don't bring it up; I am saying explain more why bring it up.

There was an audience question about Sabra and Shatila - he wanted to know what was the context for the massacre. I think he was young enough that he didn't realize it was part of the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982. This was not clearly stated in the film. Of course the filmmakers don't want to get into the whole history of THAT invasion - would make a whole series of documentaries in of itself- but a sentence at least to set the scene, please, for those who don't know the history.

These are just comments as part of the editing process to clarify the story.

By the way, I agree with another audience commenter who liked seeing the Syrian example. Now I realize that we just heard mostly from a Syrian functionary, so the Syria-bashers could say it's all propaganda. I don't know. But it does seem that the official Syrian line is to grant Palestinians the right to work and own property, even though they can't vote or be citizens. This seems like a compromise that's workable.

It wouldn't hurt Lebanon's economy or "stability" to let Palestinian doctors and engineers and lawyers work. This is simple economic development. You want your populace to be more productive - whatever their national origin. It redounds to the benefit of the gross national product.

I only use this economic argument because it seems the argument of simple morality and justice doesn't sway people. But guess what, often the just course of action leads to more peace and stability and profit.

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