Academic journal article Journal of Religion and Film

The Gatekeepers

Academic journal article Journal of Religion and Film

The Gatekeepers

Article excerpt

Directed by Dror Moreh

(Spotlight)

This documentary film was making the rounds of film festivals before it was shown at Sundance. So, it has had plenty of time to stir up feelings in Israel and around the world. And that it has done, whichever side of the fence you might be on.

The movie consists of interviews with the six former heads of Israel's behind the scenes security service, Shin Bet. Their names have only recently become public. These were the men entrusted with the internal security of Israel from the time of the Six Day War until the present. These are the men who had to deal with the suicide bombings and two intifadas. These heads of Shin Bet were in a unique position to see the workings of various policies and strategies for dealing with the Palestinians. All of them were hard-nosed individuals who took their job seriously.

Looking back on their terms as head of Shin Bet, the consensus is that Israel's approach to the Palestinians has been a mistake. It has not been successful in keeping Israel safe and it surely has not contributed to the future security of Israel. Indeed, Israel's engagement with the Palestinians has created more danger for Israel. The consensus is that Israel must open a dialogue with the Palestinians in an effort to bring to fruition a two state solution. Dividing the West Bank in ways that makes life more difficult for the Palestinians, building and protecting the settlements, and treating Israeli Arabs as second class citizens have brought Israel to an uncertain future. …

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