SYRIA: Between Iraq and a Hard Place

SYRIA:  Between Iraq and a Hard Place

    Price: $210.00

    Code: 2079

    Directed by Saul Landau
    2004, 30 minutes
    Purchase: $210 Classroom Rental: $55

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    Imagine a nation located between Israel, with its ongoing Palestinian tensions, and Iraq occupied by US forces. High U.S. officials threaten Syria, accusing it of accumulating weapons of mass destruction and having links to terrorists. Inside the country, we see a delicate balance of modern-clad men and women maintaining centuries-old traditions amidst satellite dishes on roofs and other symbols of globalization.

    The video shifts between the harsh political world and scenes of the Roman-built amphitheater in Bosra and the water wheels in Hama, the ancient ruins of King Solomon's Temple and the Krak des Chevaliers crusader fortress. Syria's rich history is revealed, with images of Christian icons and mosques, while simultaneously exposing the country's pluralistic religious mosaic.

    A Syrian filmmaker's journey back to Quneitra, his childhood hometown destroyed in 1973 after the Israeli army's withdrawal from the captured Golan Heights, reveals unresolved tensions between Israel and Syria jeopardizing peace in the region. A Syrian foreign ministry official, academics, professionals, Bedouin shepherds and people on the Damascus streets and souks offer pleas for peace in the volatile region, while also criticizing unbalanced U.S. foreign policies in the Middle East, the post 9/11 "war against terrorism" and the declining state of U.S.-Syrian relations following the Iraq War.

    Subjects & Collections


    "Captivating! This timely program presents the rich and diverse society of Syria as one which could be emblematic of much of the Middle East, and is certainly worthy of purchase consideration for media collections needing well-timed and contemporary information in an effective presentation." School Library Journal

    "Syria: Between Iraq and a Hard Place shows images you don't see in other films that come from that region. This film evokes the humanity of the Syrian people. Its power lies in its haunting and beautiful images--children playing, women buying, men praying. Would we dare to bomb such people? The fabulous soundtrak of Syrian music and street sounds and the photos of a Roman amphitheater and water wheels and women dancing in western dress combine to make this a film you shouldn't miss." - Haskell Wexler, Two time Academy-Award Winning Cinematographer