Dora McPhee (VIC) writes to ABC protesting its refusal to screen “Hope in a Slingshot” 30May10 May 30, 2010

I write to express my disappointment at the ABC refusing to screen “Hope in a slingshot” by Australian filmmaker Inka Stafrace. This decision to prevent its screening is itself an act of media censorship that contradicts the ABC’s professed adherence to  the impartiality requirement as required by Clause 6.6.3 of the ABC’s Editorial Policy. The dearth of programs dealing with the issue of Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian people means the status quo already is partial given that the bulk of what is reported or shown on the ABC is inherently pro-Israel and devoid of all mention of Israel’s illegal occupation and serial violations of Palestinian human rights. This film would be one means to address this woeful state of affairs.

As Archbishop Desmond Tutu has succinctly put it “If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.” The situation of Palestinians living under occupation is one of oppression, where their human rights are not respected and in fact violated on a daily basis with little or no recourse to justice in a world that continues to frame the conflict in terms of Israel’s security needs and not one of human rights violations, illegal occupation, colonisation and the ongoing dispossession of the Palestinian people. One cannot be balanced in a situation of oppression. Silence on these issues condones these practices.

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