About

The Witness Palestine Film Festival

The conflict in Palestine-Israel is decades old and so is the dispossession of the Palestinian people. However, this conflict is not presented as a human rights issue in mainstream American media. It is highly politicized and distorted. The idea of the Witness Palestine Film Series is to address such misconceptions by screening documentary and narrative films about the conflict, compelling films which illustrate the realities on the ground in both Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories.

The conflict in Palestine-Israel is decades old and so is the dispossession of the Palestinian people. However, this conflict is not presented as a human rights issue in mainstream American media. It is highly politicized and distorted. The idea of the Witness Palestine Film Series is to address such misconceptions by screening documentary and narrative films about the conflict, compelling films which illustrate the realities on the ground in both Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories.

The Witness Palestine Film Festival is sponsored by Christians Witnessing for Palestine, who seek a just peace for the people of Palestine wherever they may be. They have all traveled to Israel and Palestine on at least one political tour where they have met with and heard stories from both sides.

This film festival is an attempt to communicate some of this information to others in the Rochester and Western New York area by working with a broader, more diverse segment of the community. The Witness Palestine Film Committee includes activists involved in interfaith and Palestinian solidarity work as well as local filmmakers.

 

Our Theme for 2017

Decades of Dispossession - What Now?

That’s the theme of the 2017 Witness Palestine Film Festival as we remember the perpetuation of Palestinian dispossession over:

100 years since the Balfour Declaration added an important Western nation's voice for colonizing Palestine

70 years since the Nakba and ethnic cleansing of Palestine began following the partition of the land against the will of the indigenous people

50 years of Israel’s military occupation of Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem

More than 10 years of Israel’s blockade of Gaza after removal of Israel’s occupation


What Now?

We’re not advocating any particular solution for people in the Middle East. They’re of course fully capable of self-determination in these decisions.

We’re based in Rochester and believe that when more people are familiar with the situation, then more people will be dissatisfied with the status quo and willing to speak out about the injustices.

The Witness Palestine Film Festival doesn’t have a decade anniversary to celebrate; we’re six years old – yet we hope that you will support the Festival events, continuing to participate, and learn just as you have for the past six years.

We believe the situation would not continue in its current form without the current, considerable U.S. government support – financial, military, and political. We hope you’ll raise you voice in some way: writing a letter, demonstrating on a street, traveling to see for yourself, supporting a BDS effort, or in whatever way you feel comfortable – or perhaps risking feeling a little uncomfortable.

Programs for 2017

Susan Abulhawa
Keynote Presentation

Susan Abulhawa

Sunday, September 10, 2:00 p.m.
Rochester Academy of Medicine
1441 East Ave, Rochester, NY 14610
There is no charge for this event.
>> Read more


There is a Field

There is a Field

Thursday, September 14, 9:00 p.m.
also Thursday, September 28, 7:30 p.m.
The "MuCCC", Multi-Use Community Cultural Center
142 Atlantic Ave, Rochester, NY 14607
Produced in conjunction with the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival
Admission $10
>> Read more


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Junction 48

Sunday, September 17, 2:00 p.m.
The Little Theatre, #5
240 East Ave Rochester, NY 14604
Admission $10 ($5 students)
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Gaza in Context
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Gaza in Context

and

Gaza Fixer

Monday, September 18, 6:45 p.m.
The Little Theatre, #5
240 East Ave Rochester, NY 14604
Admission $10 ($5 students)
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Eyes of a Thief

Sunday, September 24, 2:00 p.m.
The Little Theatre, #5
240 East Ave Rochester, NY 14604
Admission $10 ($5 students)
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Occupation of the American Mind

Monday, September 25, 6:45 p.m.
The Little Theatre, #5
240 East Ave Rochester, NY 14604
Admission $10 ($5 students)
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There is a Field

Thursday, September 28, 7:30 p.m.
also Thursday, September 14, 9:00 p.m.
The "MuCCC", Multi-Use Community Cultural Center
142 Atlantic Ave, Rochester, NY 14607
Produced in conjunction with the KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival
Admission $10
>> Read more


Disturbing the Peace

Disturbing the Peace

Monday, October 9, 6:30 p.m.
St. John Fisher College
Basil Hall, Room 135
3690 East Ave, Rochester, NY 14618
Free and open to the public
>> Read more