The Schmooze

Penn, De Niro Attend U.N. Screening of 'Anti-Israel' Film

Over the objections of the Israeli government and the American Jewish Committee, the United Nations yesterday hosted the American premiere of a movie sure to generate further controversy with its depiction of Israel’s 1948 founding.

Based on a novel by Palestinian writer Rula Jebreal, “Miral” tells the stories of several Palestinian women over the course of several decades. In a letter written to the president of the UN General Assembly, AJC executive director David Harris warned that yesterday’s screening would be inappropriate because of its “clear political message” and depiction of Israel in a “highly negative light.”

Israel’s mission to the UN had also requested that the screening be canceled. “There is no precedent for a commercial film of a political nature being screened at the General Assembly,” the mission’s deputy permanent representative, Haim Waxman, told Israel’s Ynet Web site.

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Penn, De Niro Attend U.N. Screening of 'Anti-Israel' Film

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