From Israeli citizens - We denounce the Festival du Cinéma Israélien in Paris and the whitewashing of Israeli apartheid

| BOYCOTT! from within |

November 2020

Dear organizers

We represent one thousand citizens of Israel, who are active against our government’s violations of international law and human rights against the indigenous Palestinian people [1]. We support the Palestinian civil society call for boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) of Israel, until it ends its military occupation and apartheid policies [2].

We write to you with respect to the Israeli film festival in Paris scheduled to take place later this month. As fans of art and cinema, it brings us no joy to disrupt a cinematic event that on the face of it celebrates culture and humanity. However, we cannot stand idly by when the Israeli government attempts to whitewash its occupation, apartheid and colonialism through such festivals.

No festival which is sponsored by the Israeli government can make claims about freedom, justice, equality or peace, if its existence hinges on the institutions which systematically violate these values.

Filmmakers and cinematic festival organizers who wish to support the indigenous Palestinian people in their struggle against colonialism, should listen to the calls from Palestinian civil society. Taking part in Israeli regime-sponsored festivals as a means for political change is an oxymoron, one which entails real life and death consequences.

We ask you to join the worldwide movement for indigenous, civil, and human rights. Please stand in solidarity with the indigenous Palestinian people, and refrain from organizing a film festival sponsored by the Israeli government. We note that similar campaigns were both necessary and justifiable against attempts by the South African apartheid regime to use art to whitewash its own apartheid policies and severe violations of human rights.

Please contact us with any questions that you may have.

Sincerely,

Boycott! Supporting the Palestinian BDS Call from Within