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Targeting talent

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“Everyday Nakba” is an award winning documentary about water, filmed and directed by Mohammad al-Azza, the cameraman an Israeli soldier deliberately targeted and shot in the face 4 days ago during a raid in the West Bank, fracturing al-Azza’s skull.

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Cameraman Mohammad al-Azza (photo: PNN)

Set in Aida refugee camp, it opens with the sound of dripping water.  The narrators explain how Palestinian water is redirected to Israel and the illegal settlements. A man examining an empty, dry n’ rusted storage tank  swears to God his main concern is “the water and the water, every night…. Yesterday we commemorated the Nakba, everyday we have the Nakba, this is the biggest Nakba…. ”

(7:36) “Uncle, the water has come!” And the action begins; percussion instruments accompany the man chasing time down a well trodden path for the water in the brief opportunity he has to collect it. This is art demonstrating how even Palestinian thirst is manipulated in the cruel “philosophy of ‘maintained uncertainty’”— Palestinian endurance as a way of life under an occupation dominating every aspect of their lives thru permanent temporariness.

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Mohammad Al-Azza

(photo:Ryan Roderick Beiler/Activestills)

This is Al-Azza’s second award winning documentary. His first, Ali Wall (featured below), won the Global Jury Prize of the 2010 “It Is Apartheid” Film Contest. Mohammad Al-Azza is the director of the Arts & Media at the Lajee Center in Aida, teaching kids photography and video. Al-Azza grew up in the refugee camp and is a refugee from the village of Bayt Jibrin, ethnically-cleansed on October 29, 1948.

All the reports I read about al-Azza state that he is a photographer and works at the the Lajee Center. But like other young talented artists targeted by Israel, he is Palestine’s future, and that seems to represent a threat to Israel’s national security. There’s no reason why their art should not be about their lives, the lives Israel targets and incarcerates. Watch Ali Wall to witness the beauty of another youth Israel incarcerated. Sumud:

About Annie Robbins

Annie Robbins is Editor at Large for Mondoweiss, a human rights activist and a ceramic artist. She lives in the SF bay area. Follow her on Twitter @anniefofani

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22 Responses

  1. Citizen
    April 13, 2013, 3:19 pm

    Thank you Annie Robbins. I have spread your word.
    This is just heart-breaking. Such a “light to the world,” eh?

  2. Citizen
    April 13, 2013, 3:29 pm

    “Whatever you do, I will climb up that wall.”

    Imagine (Beatles) a POTUS saying to Israel, “Tear down that wall!”
    Unfortunately, our current American messiah Obama won’t do this.
    So how likely is the next POTUS to do it? Depressing.
    There’s something really sleazy about how AIPAC gets to determine US future–in the interest of a tiny foreign state that is a religio-ethnic state, and so, totally contrary to what I was taught was America’s highest values, what all are soldiers supposedly fought for in the great wars of the 20th Century. How seedy America has become. Why does it copy Israel?

  3. pabelmont
    April 13, 2013, 3:57 pm

    Citizen, we are agreed, around here, about the marvelousness of this claimer-to-be-a-light-unto-the-world. The more deeply unpleasant thing (except perhaps for any Jews who find it particularly horrible to contemplate THIS Israel, the Israel-on-the-ground, the Israel-in-fact) is the fact that the WORLD knows all this, or could know it all, and does nothing about it.

    The world’s capacity to stand idly by Israel/Palestine is matched only by its capacity to stand idle as climate change marches ahead, at full steam, unopposed, toward a holocaust far, far worse than Palestine’s fate, and than that other holocaust.

  4. Blownaway
    April 13, 2013, 4:02 pm

    All criminals operate in the dark. Sunshine is the great disinfectant. But with todays internet and technology, its difficult to keep atrocities in the dark. So they have to try and intimidate with violence and lawfare. these brave people cannot be silenced and for that we owe them support

    • kalithea
      April 13, 2013, 7:45 pm

      Fascist criminals break down doors at 4 a.m.; they don’t even both to knock. Which basically describes what Zionists did to this guy.

  5. ritzl
    April 13, 2013, 4:14 pm

    Thanks, Annie.

  6. DICKERSON3870
    April 13, 2013, 4:31 pm

    RE: “Everyday Nakba” is an award winning documentary about water, filmed and directed by Mohammad al-Azza, a cameraman an Israeli soldier deliberately targeted and shot in the face 4 days ago during a raid in the West Bank, fracturing al-Azza’s skull. ~ Annie Robbins

    MY SNARK: So, who ya gonna call? No, not Ghostbusters™. Call that “avid supporter of free speech and the amazing cinematic advancement Israel has seen”, none other than Ambassador Michael Oren! He is so proud of Israel’s “democratic values”! ! !

    SEE: “Israel’s US envoy: ‘Gatekeepers’ hindering PR efforts”, By Yitzhak Benhorin, Ynet News, 3/17/13
    Although he is an avid supporter of free speech, advancement of local film industry, Ambassador Michael Oren believes documentary in which Shin Bet officials slam Israel’s West Bank policy hurting country’s international image

    [EXCERPTS] WASHINGTON – Standing at the forefront of Israeli PR, Israeli Ambassador to the US Michael Oren has felt in recent weeks that he is being undermined from within.
    “The Gatekeepers” – former Shin Bet heads who were interviewed for an Oscar-nominated documentary – are the ones Oren believes are hindering the efforts made by Israel
    , which is “already in a war of sorts.”
    Oren contemplated for a long time whether or not to make this claim publicly for fear that it will relay a message that he is trying to silence freedom of speech and democratic values of which he is so proud and the amazing cinematic advancement Israel has seen.
    In his youth, the ambassador was an assistant to Orson Welles, so he appreciates a good film. However, Oren disclosed his thoughts on the subject to Ynet, and not just so that former officials would think twice before giving interviews such as those given by the six former Shin Bet directors.
    Appointed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – who himself said he does not intend to watch “The Gatekeepers,” Oren is first and foremost an historian. . .

    ENTIRE ARTICLE –,7340,L-4357190,00.html

  7. Daniel Rich
    Daniel Rich
    April 13, 2013, 7:16 pm

    @ Annie Robbins,

    Q: … shot in the face 4 days ago during a raid in the West Bank, fracturing al-Azza’s skull.

    R: As you weren’t there you won’t know, but ‘shot in the face’ and ‘still being alive’ come close to being ‘a miracle.’ CC kill, 3 bullets to the head. No matter how much I loathe the IDF, this has all the hallmarks of an ‘Oops’ moment, imho [aka no targeted killing].

  8. kalithea
    April 13, 2013, 7:36 pm

    He should end it with: I wish I could return to my village where my grandparents grew up AND FROM WHERE THEY WERE ETHNICALLY CLEANSED to make room for Jewish immigrants.

    If al-Azza’s documentaries go global; he should be very specific about the crimes committed in the past by Zionists and those being committed at present against Palestinians as the ignorant Walmart/reality tv masses have no clue as to why he can’t return to that village.

    Palestinian children should be trained in the art of cultural resistance straight from the cradle. Israelis can carry their M16s and Kalashnikovs while a new generation of Palestinian filmmakers, writers, poets, actors, rappers, musicians and painters joins a cultural resistance to rival all others! Zionists fear the camera more than they fear the wayward rocket. Palestinians need more cameras and film to get the truth out and end this occupation.

  9. kalithea
    April 13, 2013, 7:50 pm

    One more thing: Has everyone noticed how they targeted the eye he uses to look through the lens??? This is tantamount to cutting off a pianist’s hands.


  10. W.Jones
    April 13, 2013, 10:18 pm

    I think it was Rashid Khalidi, in a recent presentation, who said that the Palestinian intellectuals were specifically pushed out of the country.

  11. Taxi
    April 14, 2013, 12:21 am

    The eye of truth cannot be blinded. Cannot be shot off the face of life.

    Viva Palastina!

    • Citizen
      April 14, 2013, 7:52 am

      @ Taxi,
      Speaking of the eye of truth, what does anyone think about this recent Israel Channel 2 program (45 min) devoted to the topic of “Anti-Semitism”?
      In it, there is no mention at all of Palestinians’ long plight (at least in the English speaking parts) and Israel and historical persecution of Jews in Europe are totally conflated. I wonder why most of the examples of anti-semitism are delivered by English-speaking culprits, present day Americans and their web sites, when those English-speaking segments are not delivering speeches by the likes of the ADL chief and A Dershowitz? Also, there is no express definition of “anti-semitism” despite how long the program is. The main one, delivered by the likes of the ADL and Dershie, is that whatever the ill or problem the anti-semites blame it all on the Jews, and this has always been so. (And the state of Israel’s flag stands for all Jews.)

  12. Eva Smagacz
    Eva Smagacz
    April 14, 2013, 5:32 am

    Not that I would dream of making comparisons with You-know-Who, but in September 1939 in a continent not-that-far-away there was a list with 61000 names of professors, actors, politicians, priests, doctors, in the word everybody, who was or could potentially be a leader. They (you-know-who) had names and addresses. Death Eaters would come in the middle of the night and drag those people away, many never to be heard again – there was no Internet, so life was easier.

    • MHughes976
      April 14, 2013, 4:14 pm

      Not sure I know who – Hitler or Stalin or both?

      • piotr
        April 14, 2013, 9:04 pm

        Nihil nove sub sole. Lucius Cornelius Sulla had been the Dictator of the republic in the year 81 BC. “In total control of the city and its affairs, Sulla instituted a program of executing those whom he perceived to be enemies of the state. Plutarch describes in Life of Sulla (XXXI) ‘Sulla now began to make blood flow, and he filled the city with deaths without number or limit’ […] Sulla ordered some 1,500 nobles (i.e., senators and equites) executed, although it is estimated that as many as 9,000 people were killed. [many of the opponents were not noble, additionally the action had a momentum of its own.]”

      • Eva Smagacz
        Eva Smagacz
        April 15, 2013, 3:44 pm

        Exactly Piotr.

        One would have assumed that finding oneself repeating atrocities, and using templates of past bloody tyrants would give Zionists a pause for thought.

        But apparently not.

        This lovely piece of hasbara or self serving ethno-commercial found itself into British Library website:

        “The Jews were an ancient people who had resided in Europe for more than two thousand years. The Jews were expelled from Israel by the Romans following the destruction of the Second Temple in AD 70. They had a strong sense of vocation, of being covenanted by God to be a holy people with a special moral mission for mankind.”

        This “moral “mission must have expired for those Jews who became Zionists.

  13. talknic
    April 14, 2013, 1:31 pm

    The eye of truth cannot be blinded.
    Cannot be shot off the face of life.
    Can see thru bullsh*te.
    Needs no justification or embellishment.

  14. WinstonSmith714
    April 15, 2013, 11:13 pm

    well done, Ali Jidaar!!!

    • annie
      April 16, 2013, 12:25 am

      yeah, he’s really beautiful isn’t he. wow plus factor x1000000000.

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