Green and Red Podcast recently talked with two Israeli activists and refuseniks Amitai Ben- Abba (@amitaibenabba) and Atalya Ben-Abba about the current uprising happening against the Netanyahu government and the movement refusing service in the Israeli army in protest of the occupation.
The anti-Netanyahu movement, or the “Balfour struggle,” as it’s known in Israel, has been out in the streets across the country and in front of “Crime Minister” Benjamin Netanyahu’s homes for months. The Israeli left has not only begun to see large numbers of people joining them and increased police violence against protestors, but also a convergence of anti-austerity movements, the anti-occupation movement and people fed up with the government’s corruption and bungling of the COVID-19 crisis.
We also talk with Atalya and Amitai about the film “Objector” (@objectorfilm) which documents Atalya’s decision to refuse service in the Israeli army, the “refusenik” movement of young Israelis resisting military service and their family’s transformation as a result.
Watch the full interview on YouTube:
Atalya Ben-Abba is an Israeli conscientious objector who sat in prison for 110 days in 2017 for refusing to serve in the Israeli army. After volunteering to do civil service for two years at a shelter for homeless youth, she now studies Sociology, Anthropology, and Philosophy at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and continues to be active in various activist groups in Israel/Palestine.
Amitai Ben-Abba is a writer, filmmaker, and activist now based in Oakland, CA. Amitai is the writer and producer of the full-length documentary Objector about Atalya’s refusal and their family’s transformation as a result of her decision. Amitai’s poetry, fiction, and essays received awards and appeared in publications such as CounterPunch, Haaretz, The Independent, and Witness Magazine. Amitai holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College, where they attended as a Fellow in Writing and Community Engagement.
Objector (@ObjectorFilm) premiered at IDFA in 2019 (where it was a Top 5 Audience Favorite) and won awards at major film festivals, including Best International Documentary at the Hot Springs Festival and Best Interfaith Film at St. Louis International Film Festival.
- ‘No longer outcasts’: Anti-occupation activists find their place in Israeli protests.
- The Sodomites
- And you can learn more about the film “Objector.”