C.E.O./President, Knowledge Network
October 27, 2012
Dear Mr. Buttignol,
The Seriously Free Speech Committee is committed to free expression on issues relating to Israel and Palestine and while we do not adopt any position on what is needed to achieve a just resolution of the conflict, we believe the exclusion of Palestinian voices by the mainstream media is a form of censorship and constitutes a denial of free speech so fundamental to our democracy. As you see from our list, honourary members of SFSC reflect a wide spectrum of the Canadian population: Anton Kuerti, Naomi Klein, George Heyman, Gabor Mate, Michael Mandel to name a few.
This letter is in reference to the recent Knowledge Network series “Who Am I?” (July 3-Sept.4) which presented documentaries from 10 Israeli film makers.
According to the Knowledge Network website these documentaries offered an opportunity for Israelis to question crucial aspects of their identity such as: “How am I shaped by history and fate” and “How do we reconcile our past, and present with the future?”
As the Knowledge Network is a public broadcaster committed to fair programming, the SFSC expects that you will provide an equal opportunity for Palestinian film makers to present their work in order to highlight fundamental questions of their distinct existence.
Your “Who Am I” series provides the audience with a deeper understanding of Israeli issues, but
if Canadians are to engage in an informed dialogue on contentious Middle East issues, access to Palestinian voices, stories and points of view is essential and cannot be ignored.
We would like to meet with you, at your convenience, in order to discuss resources for a Palestinian film series and perhaps to offer information about recent, successful Palestinian festivals both in Canada and the U.S.
for the Seriously Free Speech Committee