Supporting The Promise – February 2012

The screening of the mini-series The Promise on SBS TV prompted significant support as well as criticism.  APAN was pleased to join with other groups in supporting SBS in its screening of the program, and countering the criticisms that were raised against it.

The Promise is a four-part political thriller written and directed by Peter Kosminsky. It depicts a young British woman travelling in modern day Israel and Palestine, and parallels her story with her grandfather’s experience as a British soldier in the same places in the 1940’s.  It includes depictions of a number of historical and current injustices against the Palestinian people.  The Promise won Best Drama of the year at the One World Media Awards in London last year and was nominated for a BAFTA TV Award for the Best Drama Serial.  The Promise was screened in Australia over four consecutive Sunday nights by SBS TV in November and December 2011.

Following the screening last year, the Executive Council of Australian Jewry made a formal complaint to SBS about this mini-series, comparing it to Nazi propaganda films in its depiction of Jewish people. Click here for the full text of their complaint.  They also released their complaint to the mediaSBS considered the complaint and did not uphold any aspect of itClick here for SBS’s response.

APAN invited its members and friends to write to SBS in support of the drama, and to invite them to screen it again.  We argued that Australian’s are often only exposed to the Israeli perspective of the conflict, and that its vital for Australians to be exposed to a range of perspectives about it. We invite you to read APAN’s letter to SBS.

SBS’s decision to screen the Promise was scruitinised in the Senate Environment and Communications Committee on the 13-14 February. Click here for the transcript.  Prior to the estimates hearings, APAN wrote to relevant Senators.

We would  encourage you to order your copy of The Promise as a useful educational tool.

We wish to acknowledge the great work of Australians For Palestine for their extensive work on this campaign.