DVD 30 minutes 2005 | Presented by Deep Dish TV, Producer: Brandon Jourdan
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Deep Dish TV has just finished its latest project, Fallujah. We hope that through a grassroots campaign, we can use this film to increase awareness of what is really happening in Iraq. Deep Dish is a progressive grassroots TV network whose programs show on local public access stations.

Fallujah is a collaborative production created by Iraqi and American filmmakers. After a major US led offensive launch in November of 2004, two-thirds of the city was destroyed and thousands of its citizens were forced into refugee camps.

About the Film

Code Pink commissioned Iraqi filmmaker Homodi Hasim to send a team of videographers and investigative journalists to Fallujah to record the destruction and death inflicted by the U.S.-led assault. Hasim also interviewed dozens of the estimated 250,000 thousand Fallujah residents who were forced to live in refugee camps on the outskirts of Fallujah and Baghdad. Using Code Pink's and other available footage of Fallujah, Deep Dish TV's Jourdan and Soohen went on to edit a comprehensive story about what happened there. The result is a documentary that is better edited, more nuanced, less sensational, and provides deeper historical context than the existing video on Fallujah by RAI.

Fallujah starts out with a chronicle of events leading up to the November 2004 assault: The April 2003 massacres in Fallujah, when the U.S. opened fire on residents protesting the US military's taking over their local school, killing 15 civilians; the four Blackwater private security contractors killed in March 2004; the April 2004 attack that failed to "secure" the city, and so on.

Then, through compelling and emotional first-hand accounts and live-action cinema verite, the Deep Dish TV video provides a ground-level view of the effects of the November assault on the families who were unable to flee the city. Stories and images of maimed and injured children, as well as destroyed mosques, schools, and hospitals, glaringly contradict the official claims that there were no more civilians remaining in Fallujah when the attack began.

The Deep Dish TV video also quantifies the scope of the death and destruction: 2,000 Iraqis were killed, 36,000 homes were destroyed, 8,400 shops, 60 nurseries and schools and 65 mosques were destroyed.

"They didn't find Zarqawi for the last four months," says a woman in a refugee camp, we are all Zarqawi." The claim that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's was coordinating attacks in Fallujah was one of main justifications the U.S. for the assault on, yet many Iraqis don't believe that the man even exists.

From stories about being unable to get any medical care for their injured children because medical aid was barred entrance to Fallujah, to stories about living in makeshift refugee camps lacking sufficient water, food or shelter, the video is most compelling when people who suffered through the tragedy tell the viewer in their own words what they lived through.

"We have been here for three months," says another refugee, a 65 year-old woman sitting beside a tent, holding an infant. "Our children are sick, our men are gone, killed. Our country is destroyed. We are homeless now. They tell us to go back to Fallujah, now, but what Fallujah do we go back to? Our belongings were stolen and the houses were leveled... and the Americans are still there."

The video notes that "refugees returning to Fallujah are forced to carry special ID cards, and undergo biometric scans to enter." One year after the assault, Fallujah still lies in rubble, running water is scarce, electricity is hard to come by and armed resistance to the heavy U.S. occupation continues.

The DVD version includes video "extras" containing excerpts from the War Tribunal on Iraq held in Istanbul earlier this year.

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