Nakba Commemoration Film 2016: OCCUPATION OF THE AMERICAN MIND



1 show only ~ standard ticket prices

[trailer & more]                       [poster for May 16 Cinemapolis screening]

  1. 82 minutes. A Media Education Foundation Production. Executive Producer, Sut Jhally. Writer, Producer & Director: Loretta Alper & Jeremy Earp. Co-Producer, Jason Young. Editors, Jason Young & Jeremy Earp. Associate Producer, George Matta.

Synopsis:  Israel’s ongoing military occupation of Palestinian territory and repeated invasions of the Gaza strip have triggered a fierce backlash against Israeli policies virtually everywhere in the world — except the United States. The Occupation of the American Mind takes an eye-opening look at this critical exception, zeroing in on pro-Israel public relations efforts within the U.S.
Narrated by Roger Waters and featuring leading observers of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and U.S. media culture, the film explores how the Israeli government, the U.S. government, and the pro-Israel lobby have joined forces, often with very different motives, to shape American media coverage of the conflict in Israel’s favor. From the U.S.-based public relations campaigns that emerged in the 1980s to today, the film provides a sweeping analysis of Israel’s decades-long battle for the hearts, minds, and tax dollars of the American people in the face of widening international condemnation of its increasingly right-wing policies.  (source: Media Education Foundation).

Featuring Roger Waters, Amira Hass, M.J. Rosenberg, Stephen M. Walt, Noam Chomsky, Rula Jebreal, Henry Siegman, Rashid Khalidi, Rami Khouri, Yousef Munayyer, Norman Finkelstein, Max Blumenthal, Phyllis Bennis, Norman Solomon, Mark Crispin Miller, Peter Hart, and Sut Jhally.


Review in counterpunch by Robert Jensen, School of Journalism, U Texas at Austin & board member of the Third Coast Activist Resource Center.


Review in Mondoweiss by Abba Solomon,
March 29, 2016.

Tributes from Dave Zirin, the Nation magazine; Marc Lamont Hill, CNN political analyst and host of HuffPost Live; Gideon Levy, columnist for Haaretz; and others.

Premier screening just last month at U Mass Amherst
(sponsored by the American Friends Service Committee, Western MA Program)

Kudos for ‘Occupation of the American Mind’

“Harrowing and incendiary! A vital and unmissable film.”
– Dave Zirin, The Nation magazine

“Amazing! Brilliantly exposes how American media is an active partner in the ugly and illegal occupation of Palestine. By promoting inaccurate narratives of self-defense and disguising the true stakes of the crisis, the State of Israel is able to garner sympathy and solidarity at a moment where it deserves outrage and critique. This is a must-watch documentary for anyone interested in understanding the truth of the Occupation and the failures of Western journalism.”
– Marc Lamont Hill, CNN political analyst and host of HuffPost Live

“I wish every American would watch this powerful documentary. Not only every person of conscience, but every taxpayer, must see it — and then ask themselves if the status quo is acceptable and can continue deep into the 21st century.”
– Gideon Levy, columnist for Haaretz

“One of the most brilliant and important documentaries I have ever seen. If a student wishes to understand how powerful interests manipulate the news and politics in a ‘free’ society, and have turned the Palestinians into a non-people who have no rights and deserve no justice, this powerful film is mandatory viewing. It will change the way you understand the world.”
– Robert W. McChesney, Professor of Communication, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Co-author, People Get Ready: The Fight Against a Jobless Economy and a Citizenless Democracy

“One of the most compelling and important documentaries in recent years, because it helps us make sense of the lies, mayhem, and injustice in the heart of the Middle East: Palestine. Never has propaganda, or ‘public relations’, been such a lethal weapon as it is in the hands of Israel, its apologists, and manipulators. To reach behind the facade that is ‘news’, watch this film.”
– John Pilger, Journalist and filmmaker

“A great piece of work. Not only lays out the case for mainstream media malfeasance but also provides a clear and concise explanation of the history and contemporary politics behind the Israeli occupation of Palestine.”
– Robert Jensen, professor at the School of Journalism, University of Texas at Austin and author of Arguing for Our Lives: A User’s Guide to Constructive Dialog

“This hard-hitting, fact-based documentary is a must-see for anyone who wants to understand the Palestinian-Israeli conflict and its distorted coverage in the corporate media — and how the American public has been systematically lied to again and again. An indispensable resource for both the novice and the expert.”
– Deepa Kumar, Associate Professor of Media Studies, Rutgers University

“As courageous as it is informative, brilliantly produced and faithful to its search for the truth, The Occupation of the American Mind makes clear how the current right-wing government in Israel has weaponized knowledge, eviscerated a range of critical interpretations, and obliterated the voices of reason in the interest of controlling the media and public relations apparatuses in the United States. Everyone should watch this film, debate its assumptions, and test its insights against the issue of what education and public relations should look like in a democracy.”
– Henry Giroux, Professor of English and Cultural Studies, McMaster University

“Every American needs to watch this film in order to understand how the culture industries and the political pundits have shaped a one-sided narrative of the Israeli occupation of Palestine, and erased the basic human dignity of the Palestinians from the American media landscape. The Occupation of the American Mind seeks to restore that dignity for American viewers. It is an essential film.”
– Vijay Prashad, Editor of Letters to Palestine: Writers Respond to War and Occupation and Professor of International Studies, Trinity College

“Compelling, revealing, and chilling. Not only demonstrates how hasbara — Israeli propaganda — became American common sense, but it offers one of the best accounts of Israel’s violent dispossession and occupation of Palestinian lands. For over half a century, Americans drank the Kool-Aid concocted by the Israel lobby, the U.S. media, and virtually all elected officials because there were no alternatives. This film — like the movements that inspired it — is the antidote.”
– Robin D. G. Kelley, author of Freedom Dreams: The Black Radical Imagination and Professor of American History at UCLA

“This terrific and memorable film comes at just the right time, when the lockstep mentality that promotes Zionist sympathies in the U.S. is eroding fast. The Occupation of the American Mind lays bare the fictions that underpinned this mentality for so long, and shows us why these fabrications are now being challenged so confidently.”
– Andrew Ross, Professor of Social and Cultural Analysis, New York University

“A cutting, carefully argued expose of the decades-long campaign of Israel and its defenders to deceive the U.S. public about the historical roots and present realities of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict… The film also offers a measured analysis of the role of the pro-Israel lobby in forming U.S. Middle East policy and the complicity of the United States in the perpetuation of the conflict. Let’s hope the filmmakers are right that the tide of public opinion is turning in favor of equal rights for all and that U.S. policy will eventually be forced to follow suit.”
– Chris Toensing, Executive Director and Editor, Middle East Report

Tributes compiled by Media Education Foundation.