Directors Eric Axelman and Sam Eilertsen expected to attend
Two young American Jews - Simone Zimmerman and Eitan - are raised to defend the state of Israel at all costs: Eitan joins the Israeli military, while Simone supports Israel on ‘the other battlefield’, America’s college campuses. But when they witness Israel's mistreatment of the Palestinian people with their own eyes, they are horrified and heartbroken. Israelism questions the relationship between American Jewish identity and support for the state of Israel. Featuring interviews with prominent thinkers like Jeremy Ben Ami, Noam Chomsky, and Cornel West, this timely political documentary investigates a generational divide impacting this community. Older, established Jewish-American political leaders often equate anti-Zionism with antisemitism. Traditional Jewish-American education is grounded in Zionism with the establishment of the state of Israel as a haven for Jewish refugees globally after the Holocaust. Inspired by this narrative, many Americans have immigrated to Israel and have even served in the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF). At the same time, a group of young American Jews, including IDF veterans and rabbis, grapple with Palestinian displacement, ongoing violence, and the Israeli military’s treatment of the Palestinian people. They team up with Palestinian activists and protest political propaganda taught to dehumanize Palestinians. As a result, their Jewish identity is called into question by other Jewish Americans because they do not support the Israeli government. As antisemitic violence escalates in the US, a major rift within the Jewish-American political landscape appears.
West Coast Premiere
Screening to be followed by a panel with film participants Sarah Anne Minkin and Gilli Getz.
Co-sponsored by Ron Abileah and Marlene Winograd