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WEST BANK: Pro-Palestinian Israeli filmmaker killed in West Bank city

  Jenin

Israeli-born filmmaker and actor Juliano Mer-Khamis, 52, was shot dead in the northern West Bank city of Jenin on Monday.

It was not clear who was responsible, but some Palestinians believe the perpetrators may be among  those opposed to the liberal cultural activity Mer-Khamis had brought to Jenin and his role in building the Freedom Theater in 2006.

Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad condemned the killing, describing it as “hideous crime” and promising to bring to justice those responsible.

Khamis was born in Nazareth, northern Israel, to a Palestinian father, Saliba Khamis, one of the leaders of the Israeli Communist Party, and a Jewish mother, Arna Mer, a peace activist who had worked with children in the Jenin refugee camp after the first Palestinian intifada, or uprising, in the early 1990s.

Juliano Mer-Khamis lived with his mother in the Jenin refugee camp for several periods.

Apart from starting the Freedom Theater in Jenin, Mer-Khamis also directed the film "Arna’s Children" (2004), which tells the story of his mother and the struggle of Palestinians in Jenin in the face of Israel's occupation. He also acted in Julian Schnabel's new movie, "Miral," which was recently presented at the United Nations amid protests from Israel.

His last directed work is the locally produced Arabic play, "The Chairs," which had its debut at Ramallah’s Kasaba theater on Sunday.

George Ibrahim, director of Kasaba theater and who performed in "The Chairs," said he was shocked when he heard the news of Mer-Khamis’ death. He accused people who were against seeing Palestinian cultural activities in the city of being behind the killing, but without naming them. He was clearly referring to fundamentalists who saw in the Freedom Theater a liberalization of a traditional and conservative Muslim society.

The Freedom Theater itself had come under attack twice in the past and a Jenin-based music school was set fire to at one point, giving some credence to Ibrahim’s charges.

“We will not allow, under any circumstances, the return to chaos and lawlessness,” said Prime Minister Fayyad in his statement.

Armed gunmen had at one point controlled the Palestinian streets until Fayyad, who took office in mid-2007, had in a short time put an end to this phenomena and brought stability and rule of law to the Palestinian territories.

— Maher Abukhater in Ramallah, West Bank

Photo: People, carrying images of Juliano Mer-Khamis, hold a protest in Ramallah, West Bank, over his killing. Credit: Mohamad Torokman/Reuters

Comments () | Archives (42)

Religious zealots fear peace. Look what happened to Netanyahu when he tried to make peace with Arafat.

Jadaliyya is tremendously saddened to report the murder of Juliano Mer Khamis earlier today. Juliano, 52, who was the Artistic Director of The Jenin Freedom Theater and the co-director of the award-winning documentary Arna’s Children, was shot by unknown assailants in Jenin as he was leaving the theater. We offer our deepest condolences to his family, his friends, and all who worked with him and loved him.

by Anthony Alessandrini

'Juliano Mer Khamis was a fearless artist, and a fearless human being. Arna’s Children and The Freedom Theater are only the two most visible parts of his legacy, a legacy that bespeaks the role artistic creation can play even amidst the most horrible depths of injustice and suffering. “The Freedom Theatre will provide the children of the camp a tranquil environment to express themselves and create,” he wrote, describing the vision of the theater in 2006. To imagine the possibility of opening up a space of tranquility, of expression, and thus of possibility, in Jenin Refugee Camp, whose name has become synonymous with the most vicious and destructive brutality of the occupation, might be seen as madness. Its very existence is a testament to the power of the artistic tradition that Juliano embodied with such beauty and power. '

'Juliano was born in Nazareth in 1958. He was the son of Saliba Khamis, a Palestinian citizen of Israel who was at one time the secretary of the Israeli Communist Party, and Arna Mer Khamis, a Jewish Israeli who spent her youth in the Palmach but became an anti-Zionist activist and a fearless fighter for peace, justice, and human rights. In interviews, Juliano would tell a story that marked the “racial lunacy” into which he was born: his mother went into labor while taking part in a protest against the imposition of martial law on Palestinian villages in Israel. She was rushed to the hospital, "but the doctors refused to stitch her and she nearly bled to death," he said. "They knew she was married to an Arab." '

@total_stranger

Actually, 1st, no delusions here, and while I did appropriate the blame elsewhere, I didn't state who it actually was FYI. bad analogy on your behalf zionist.

@Stefano888 Props to you! I appreciate your review. This is also very exact and succinct too!

'It is pretty clear the zealous Zionists and their Christian lackeys will say or do anything to support Israel, regardless of the propaganda and misinformation they spew out to influence the ignorant, the duped, and those who can be bought and sold in the market place of ideas. '

"It is so obvious due to his family and his own cultural works that he was Pro Humanitarian and supportive of the Palestinian cause in Occupied Palestinian territories, thus very little chance at all that his death was committed by Palestinians at all and 100% more likely to be Jewish Thug settlers or unruly IDF personnel.

Posted by: woobie | April 05, 2011 at 12:43 PM"

Ugh. Obvious to those who suffer from paranoid delusion perhaps. What's most disappointing though is how you quote:

"It was not clear who was responsible"

and then go on to assign responsibility to your favourite demon, those evil Jews. Hypocracy, inconsistency, just plain nasty-minded bigotry. We expect nothing less from you, dear Woobie.

"A much greater probability that either a Mossad agent or Jewish settler was the perpetrator.

Posted by: Stefano888 | April 07, 2011 at 12:15 AM"

Perhaps you have some evidence to support this? An even greater probability that you live in a world of paranoid delusion, where every Jew is a suspect.

More death from these terrorists today!

JERUSALEM – An anti-tank missile fired from the Gaza Strip struck a school bus in southern Israel Thursday, wounding two people, including one child critically, Israeli officials said.

Anti-Tank Missile Strikes School Bus in Israel April 7. Efforts to Save Life of 13-Year-Old in Attack

I am sure had it been the Israelis doing the shooting it would have been on your front page.
Where is your fairness in coverage.


I must commend Trapp, Woobie, Archibald, Matty and others who are often critical of Zionism and Israel for their continued persistence and tolerance . I have read your comments now for over 2 months and you most often present ideas and facts at the college level or higher. Whereas your opposition appears to be at the junior high, not college, level, really. I have taught college for 33yrs so far in the relevant areas and am not even age 60 yet, but if my students thought in such a primitive fashion, as these contaminated Zionists, I would literally quit teaching. No wonder the Palestinians have had to resort to violence against these irrational, racist, self-centered, and arrogant beings who possess wealth, power, status, and high technology weapons and media dominance.

Historically, Zionist intellectual terrorism used to be a rather high level form of rational or sophisticated propaganda at least on the East Coast and in major cities across the Midwest. But the quality of Zionist arguments and assertions here on the LA Tribune site is about the lowest I have ever seen, including from some of their uneducated supporters in the South. Perhaps they could use a dose of Dershowitz, Pipes, Goldberg, and Bolton. They would be better to debate as long as we would not have to witness their homely faces.

It is pretty clear the zealous Zionists and their Christian lackeys will say or do anything to support Israel, regardless of the propaganda and misinformation they spew out to influence the ignorant, the duped, and those who can be bought and sold in the market place of ideas.

A much greater probability that either a Mossad agent or Jewish settler was the perpetrator.

Nabil Al-Murabit : "Hmmm, is Yigal Amir still in jail? How about Barauch Goldstein, was he reincarnated? I know, the Golem did it. Now, all those people that would bump their gums about how evil Muslims are, should replace that sentiment with Jews."

Wow, you found two Israelis (Jews), one idiot who murdered the Prime Minister of Israel and one maniac who murdered multiple Arabs at their mosque before being killed by the survivors. Both years ago. I guess you had to go back to the last century to find these two. How many years ago was the last Islamist murder or massacre of innocent people? In fact, how many hours ago was it?

DeanBlake wrote, “this is what Israeli Jews get for even trying to help Arabs; a bullet in the brain.”
Rabin would agree.
DeanBlake believes that the IDF was justified in intentionally attacking and killing the US sailors aboard the USS Liberty.
I extend my condolences to Juliano Mer-Khamis’s family.

The only posts on recent comments are the ones against Israel when even the Palestinans say it was one of their own that killed him..

Hmmm, is Yigal Amir still in jail? How about Barauch Goldstein, was he reincarnated? I know, the Golem did it. Now, all those people that would bump their gums about how evil Muslims are, should replace that sentiment with Jews

DeanBlake wrote, “this is what Israeli Jews get for even trying to help Arabs; a bullet in the brain.”
Rabin might disagree.
DeanBlake believes that the IDF was justified in attacking and killing US sailors aboard the USS Liberty.

This is the only headline coming out of Israel that the LA times can afford to print? I thought murders were reserved for the local news.

woobie.
the biased/racist/and misguided.
you seem to have writen about your-self.
thank you.

 
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