Neil Armstrong may have walked on the moon in 1969, but there has never been a woman who walked the red carpet in a hijaab till just a few days back, making 2013, a year to remember for us ‘hijabinistas’ ! Mrs. Burnat, the wife of Documentary Film maker Emad Burnat, wore a beautiful traditional Palestinian gown with a soft beige hijaab to compliment her outfit.
Emad Burnat, is a Palestinian Director, for the documentary of “5 Broken Cameras’. 5 Broken Cameras, the first Palestinian documentary ever nominated for an Oscar, has already won awards at the Sundance Film Festival and the Cinema Eye Honors. It features footage that the olive farmer-turned-filmmaker shot using five cameras in his occupied West Bank village of Bil’in, from everyday activities with his family to protests and shootings. The son with whom he travelled with, Gibreel, was the inspiration for buying the first of these cameras in 2005; like so many parents, Burnat wanted to document the boy’s first steps and smiles.
When Emad arrived at LAX from Turkey with his wife and son,he was detained as he entered the U.S. on Tuesday for this week’s awards ceremony and his family was threatened with deportation. Customs agents at LAX told them they didn’t have the proper proof that he was a nominee and would send them back if they couldn’t verify the reason for their visit. Surprisingly though, Emad was in the States just 2 weeks earlier with Israeli movie partner, Guy Davidi !
Emad had gotten in touch with Michael Moore while him and his family were in interrogation, and Moore’s lawyers managed to clear everything up within a few hours. Moore tweeted: ‘Apparently the Immigration & Customs officers couldn’t understand how a Palestinian could be an Oscar nominee. Emad texted me for help.’
When asked about his treatment at the LAX airport, Burnat replied ” There are more than 500 Israeli checkpoints, roadblocks, and other barriers to movement across our land, and not a single one of us has been spared the experience that my family and I experienced yesterday. Ours was a very minor example of what my people face every day.”
As joyous as it may have been, to get shortlisted for an Oscar, unfortunately, racism or if I may quote my new word ‘religiousism’ -(racism towards certain religions) scarred what should have been a triumphant moment for Palestinians all over. Even though a hijabi walked through the red carpet at the Oscars in 2013, the LAX officials have unfortunately proved that they are still stuck with a prehistoric attitude that Muslims can not be anything but ‘terrorists’.
What are your thoughts on this ?