The Oscar-nominated film The Gatekeepers, which was intended by its director to be educational, is in fact nothing less than a promotion for shop-worn left-wing Israeli politics (“Oscar hopefuls point a frank lens at Israel,” Feb. 20).
That it is one-sided is an understatement. Tom Tugend reports Dror Moreh saying in an interview at an LA hotel, “We Jews are masters of self-criticism. It’s in our genes.” What he does not recognize is that he facilitated Israel’s top security experts, whose primary goal was to ensure Israel’s safety, in an exercise of hanging out “dirty washing” into the public arena at large. Moreh and his subjects have the right to their beliefs, but not the right to assume that they are necessarily correct. Very often those who are so sure of themselves are found to be suspect.
A total lack of balance to promote one’s political convictions cannot be described as excellence in filmmaking. Why was Oslo a failure? Why were viewers not given the opportunity of understanding that the only illegal occupiers of the terrain in question were Egypt and Jordan? Should we forget that “land for peace” was fully tested with the withdrawal from Gaza only to realize further terrorism? Did not Israel offer the Palestinians a state not once, but three times on substantially all of the West Bank — and Gaza with a capital in Jerusalem — only to have the offers rejected?
Moreh’s quaint sense of honesty is such that he fails to disclose the interviews of the same spymasters a decade ago, when they voiced precisely the identical thoughts. So much for “first time ever.”
Without historical context, the movie is an exercise in reverse causality. Professor Phyllis Chesler asserts the film “will cause Israel great harm, great danger,” while Italian journalist Giulo Meotti considers the six Shin Bet heads to be “victims of an ‘Oslo Syndrome,’ like the Stockholm Syndrome, in which hostages come to identify with their captors.”