Veteran TV news anchorman Chaim Yavin – who is a household name and an authoritative personality in the world of Israeli television -- has created an insightful, provocative and hard-hitting look at the Arabs of Israel, the first part of which was broadcast on Israel TV Channel 2 this past week. The Palestinan Arabs of Israel are citizens and carry a blue identity card, as do all Israelis. However, they suffer both social discrimination and institutionalized discrimination by many government ministries and by large portions of the Israeli Jewish population. In addition, they are caught between a rock and a hard place, trying to balance their feelings of belonging and citizenship in Israel as they ally themselves politically and emotionally with their Palestinian brethren in the West Bank.
Yavin's TV documentary shows the filmmaker himself, on camera, meeting and interviewing Arabs in the Galilee and in the center of the country. It is made up of five parts –
- "My Blood is Red Like Yours" looks at poverty, building rights, issues of land ownership, and discrimination;
- "Land of the Negev" which shows how the Bedouin of the Negev are grappling with the modern world and are losing their nomadic lifestyle as their unrecognized villages are dismantled;
- one chapter deals with the watershed events of October 2000;
- one chapter deals with the pros and cons of national service in trying to help the Arabs integrate into Israeli society;
- the last chapter deals with the conflicting Zionist and Arab narratives of 1948.
For Israeli readers of this blog, be sure to watch for the continuation of this series, which is being aired on Channel 2 during the weeks ahead! The series is available from Rony Productions, firstname.lastname@example.org