Benjamin Netanyahu Not Happy With Israel's Oscar-Nominated 'Gatekeepers'

Bibi Insists He Hasn't Seen Film About Security Insiders

Disturbing Documentaries: ‘The Gatekeepers’ has rattled Israel’s government as it vies for an Academy Award. It is an unnerving movie because it’s not Israel’s enemies who are calling for changes in how the country does business. It’s those at the very heart of the Jewish State’s security apparatus.
Disturbing Documentaries: ‘The Gatekeepers’ has rattled Israel’s government as it vies for an Academy Award. It is an unnerving movie because it’s not Israel’s enemies who are calling for changes in how the country does business. It’s those at the very heart of the Jewish State’s security apparatus.

By Reuters

Published February 21, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

(page 2 of 2)

“Five Broken Cameras” was partly funded by an Israeli government-run cultural trust and involved an Israeli filmmaker, but its Palestinian director, Emad Burnat, has shunned suggestions that it augurs reconciliation between the sides.

While mostly well-received by Israeli audiences and film critics, “The Gatekeepers” broke little new ground politically. Four of the ex-Shin Bet chiefs had jointly aired similar public criticism against former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in 2003.

But interest has been piqued by the film’s slick archive footage and digital reenactments, its international accolades and the fact its interviewees span current ideological divides.

One of them, Avi Dichter, is Israel’s civil defence minister and a member of Likud and Netanyahu’s inner security cabinet. Another, Yaakov Peri, is a lawmaker in Yesh Atid, the centrist party that was runner-up to Likud in the Jan. 22 ballot.

“When you leave the service (Shin Bet), you become a bit of a leftist,” Peri says in the film.

A third interviewee, Ami Ayalon, who once ran for the leadership of the centre-left Labour party, tells director Dror Moreh that Israelis suffer a strategic shortsightedness that could imperil their survival as a democracy.

“We win every battle, but lose the war,” Ayalon says.

Moreh told Reuters this month that U.S. President Barack Obama should intervene in the conflict in his second term, comparing Palestinians and Israelis to kindergarten children.

“They need a grown-up to tell them, ‘Enough! Israel, Palestine, this is what you need to do, do it.’”

Dichter, who said this week he had not yet seen the film, said it was “skewed, improper and tendentious” to criticise a serving prime minister, telling Israel’s Channel Two television:

“The prime minister sets policy that is good for the State of Israel, not policy that is good for the Oscars.”


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Law professor Dan Markel waited a shocking 19 minutes for an ambulance as he lay dying after being ambushed in his driveway. Read the stunning 911 transcript as neighbor pleaded for help.
  • Happy birthday to the Boy Who Lived! July 31 marks the day that Harry Potter — and his creator, J.K. Rowling — first entered the world. Harry is a loyal Gryffindorian, a matchless wizard, a native Parseltongue speaker, and…a Jew?
  • "Orwell would side with Israel for building a flourishing democracy, rather than Hamas, which imposed a floundering dictatorship. He would applaud the IDF, which warns civilians before bombing them in a justified war, not Hamas terrorists who cower behind their own civilians, target neighboring civilians, and planned to swarm civilian settlements on the Jewish New Year." Read Gil Troy's response to Daniel May's opinion piece:
  • "My dear Penelope, when you accuse Israel of committing 'genocide,' do you actually know what you are talking about?"
  • What's for #Shabbat dinner? Try Molly Yeh's coconut quinoa with dates and nuts. Recipe here:
  • Can animals suffer from PTSD?
  • Is anti-Zionism the new anti-Semitism?
  • "I thought I was the only Jew on a Harley Davidson, but I was wrong." — Gil Paul, member of the Hillel's Angels. http://jd.fo/g4cjH
  • “This is a dangerous region, even for people who don’t live there and say, merely express the mildest of concern about the humanitarian tragedy of civilians who have nothing to do with the warring factions, only to catch a rash of *** (bleeped) from everyone who went to your bar mitzvah! Statute of limitations! Look, a $50 savings bond does not buy you a lifetime of criticism.”
  • That sound you hear? That's your childhood going up in smoke.
  • "My husband has been offered a terrific new job in a decent-sized Midwestern city. This is mostly great, except for the fact that we will have to leave our beloved NYC, where one can feel Jewish without trying very hard. He is half-Jewish and was raised with a fair amount of Judaism and respect for our tradition though ultimately he doesn’t feel Jewish in that Larry David sort of way like I do. So, he thinks I am nuts for hesitating to move to this new essentially Jew-less city. Oh, did I mention I am pregnant? Seesaw, this concern of mine is real, right? There is something to being surrounded by Jews, no? What should we do?"
  • "Orwell described the cliches of politics as 'packets of aspirin ready at the elbow.' Israel's 'right to defense' is a harder narcotic."
  • From Gene Simmons to Pink — Meet the Jews who rock:
  • The images, which have since been deleted, were captioned: “Israel is the last frontier of the free world."
  • As J Street backs Israel's operation in Gaza, does it risk losing grassroots support?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.