First Lesson In Peace
Shalom Kitah Alef
Israel | 2005 | 56mins | Beta | Colour | Subtitled
This documentary explores the Jewish-Arab conflict through the eyes of a six-year-old girl – the director’s daughter – when she starts school at the mixed Arab-Jewish primary school, Neveh Shalom – The Oasis of Peace.
The director, the son of Zionist immigrants to Israel from Australia, and his wife Ofira, whose father was killed by Arabs in one of the Arab-Israel wars, accompany their daughter Michal on her first few days at school. They are full of fears and apprehension, concern and many politically incorrect thoughts, especially when both Yoram’s Zionist father and Ofira’s extreme right-wing brother express opposition to the parent’s decision on their young daughter’s future education at this Arab-Jewish experimental school.
The documentary reaches a climax on the Israel Memorial Day and Israel Independence Day which is also the Palestinian Day of Disaster, bringing all those featured in the film into sharply differing views and situations, some complicated and angry, some courageous and surprising – but all demonstrating the great complexity and enduring difficulties of this multi-faceted conflict.
Will be screened with Adora