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September 13, 1993: Two national leaders reach out and shake hands, while a third one watches. Yasser Arafat, Yitzhak Rabin, and Bill Clinton in the garden of the White House. A historic moment, repeated 20 times, tainted by countless shattered hopes. On the soundtrack Edward Said expresses his outrage at the Oslo Peace Accord which was settled by this handshake.
“I remember the handshake very clearly. My dad recorded the ceremony on video and would play it over and over again. He could not believe what had happened. In fact, none of us could. One time he threw his shoe at the TV and shouted so loud, the next door neighbors complained about him. Listening to the last interview with Edward Said while watching the ceremony made me realize that father’s anger was because chairman Arafat was the first one to reach out his hand.” (Mahdi Fleifel)

Mahdi Fleifel, born in Dubai in 1979, was raised in Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp in Lebanon and later in the suburbs of Elsinore in Denmark. In 2009, Fleifel graduated from the National Film and Television School in London. His first-year film, Arafat & I, screened at festivals around the world and won numerous awards. Fleifel’s first feature-length documentary A World Not Ours screened in the Berlinale Panorama section and received awards all over the world.

Production: Idioms Film 2014, Mohanad Yaqubi
Contact: info@idiomsfilm.com www.idiomsfilm.com
: QuickTime ProRes, Colour
Running time: 5 min
Language: English

Funded by:

  • Logo Minister of State for Culture and the Media
  • Logo des Programms NeuStart Kultur