Joe Gutierrez Office of Strategic Communication (909) 537-5007 email@example.com
The events surrounding the 2010 Freedom Flotilla to aid residents of Gaza and its attempt to break through an Israeli naval blockade is the focus of the documentary film “The Truth: Lost at Sea,” which will be shown at Cal State San Bernardino on Thursday, Nov. 8. Sponsored by the Center for Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies, the documentary will be shown beginning at 6 p.m. in the College of Education, room CE-105. The screening is free and open to the public; parking at CSUSB is $6. Following the film, the audience will have the opportunity to participate in a question-and-answer session with the film’s director, Rifat Audeh. He is a veteran activist and defender of Palestinian human rights, and was aboard one of the Freedom Flotilla ships when it attempted to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza on May 31, 2010. Six ships were in the flotilla, whose passengers were activists who were against the blockade of Gaza; the ships were attempting to deliver humanitarian aid and construction material. According to news reports, the Israeli navy wanted the flotilla to go to a nearby port where its cargo could be inspected for contraband and arms before allowing items to be delivered to Gaza. When the flotilla attempted to run through the blockade, Israeli commandos boarded five of the ships with little incident. When they attempted to board the sixth, the Mavi Marmara, they were met with resistance. In the ensuing violence, nine of activists were killed (one more died four years later after being in a coma); ten Israeli commandos were wounded. From the “The Truth: Lost at Sea” website: “Shot from aboard the Freedom Flotilla, directed and narrated by one of its survivors and following up on subsequent media coverage, the film shows how the dead activists and their comrades who defended their vessels were portrayed. The film reveals what really happened and how it was spun in traditional and online media outlets.” The film has been recognized with several awards since its release, including Best Feature Documentary at the 2018 CUCIF Cuzco Underground Cinema Festival in Peru; the Audience Award, 2018 Al Ard Film Festival; Pukañawi International Eye Award, 2018 International Human Rights Film Festival, Bolivia; Mediterranean Special Award, 2018 Lebanese Independent Film Festival-LIFF; and Semi-Finalist at the Los Angeles CineFest. Audeh recently completed his master’s degree in journalism and media studies at Newcastle University at Newcastle upon Tyne, England. For more information and accommodations, please contact Ahlam Muhtaseb, director of CIMES at (909) 537-7469 or AMuhtase@csusb.edu. Visit the CSUSB Center for Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies website for more information on its programs.