TV's Promised Land | Chicago Reader

TV's Promised Land

New York high school teacher Nick Dembowski culled this 2003 video from three years' worth of TV programs, juxtaposing unrelated images to portray Arabs (especially Palestinians) as victims of U.S. and Israeli theocracy. Egregious as his examples of anti-Arab bias may be, his montage crosses the line from polemic to propaganda: footage of the founding of Israel is paired with a historian's lecture on manifest destiny in the settling of the American west; sermons from televangelists are used to link modern Zionism to fundamentalist “end time” prophecies; and in one particularly shameless sequence a contemporary sound bite from President Bush accompanies scenes of the Sabra and Shatila massacres in 1982. By attributing U.S. support of Israel solely to the machinations of the Christian right, Dembowski ignores decades of complex geopolitical history. 75 min.


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