‘The Settlers’ – A Jewish film

In spite of protests from several Jewish groups, Israel’s award-winning filmmaker Shimon Dotan’s new film The Settlers had its world premier at the Sundance Film Festival on January 28, 2016.

The film is based on the official report of Talia Sasson, former head of Israeli state prosecution criminal department that covered illegal Jewish settlements established in the West Bank and East Jerusalem between 1995 and March 2005. His report was based on his investigation of 105 settlements built during that time period.

The findings of my report were that the entity behind the establishment of the outposts was the state of Israel, acting behind the government’s back, illegally, but with the involvement of various government ministries, settlers, local councils in the territories. They are the ones that used state funds to build those outposts, and all of this was done illegally. The illegality was institutionalized. The government couldn’t decide on the establishment of new settlements, because the Americans were given verbal commitments, and the prime minister didn’t want to violate them. But there was still the desire to build new settlements, so they found a system whereby the government is “unaware” that settlements are being built with government funds,” Talia Sasson told Amy Goodman (Jewish) of Democracy Now!. Watch interview and film clip below.

In August 2014, Jonas Fossli Gjerso, PhD, in an article said the truth that Israel itself is a settlers’ colony (here).

Rewind the clock more or less than a century and you will find a world teeming with settler colonies engaged in battle with ‘unruly natives.’ Today only one remains; Israel is the last of a dying breed, the last of the settler colonies. The motives of settler colonists, either derived from nationalism, greed or any other reason, does not detract from or alter the basic components of this phenomenon: the dispossession of the indigenous population’s land and rights by a new population. Put in simple terms: whether you steal someone’s property due to your own property having been stolen, or simply for economic gain does not change the fact that you have engaged in theft,” Gjerso said.

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