Pink Floyd provides theme song for film on how Israel forces Bedouins to live in dumps

The rock band Pink Floyd has provided the theme song to High Hopes, a short new film on Israel’s discrimination against Palestinian Bedouins.

Directed by Guy Davidi of Five Broken Cameras, the film focuses on the displaced Bedouin of villages around Jerusalem, detailing how in some cases, they have been forced to live in garbage dumps.

High Hopes follows the success of Nowhere Left to Go, another film by the Jahalin Association, a group defending the rights of Bedouins from the Jahalin tribe.

As one activist depicted at a protest against evictions says during High Hopes, “I am not crying for the Bedouins any more, I am crying for the people who have lost their humanity.” Meanwhile Israeli soldiers insist on their “right” to enforce “dozens of eviction orders” against Bedouins who were first made refugees in 1948.

Both of the Jahalin Association’s films have Pink Floyd connections.

High Hopes shares its title with the final track from the British band’s 1994 album The Division Bell. And Roger Waters, a founding member of Pink Floyd and a vocal supporter of the Palestinian call for a cultural boycott of Israel, contributed music to Nowhere Left to Go.

High Hopes has already garnered one prize, a “best documentary short” award at the Erie International Film Festival.

It will be shown at the London Short Film Festival this Sunday (18 January).

The London film festival program says of High Hopes that:

In 1997-98, Bedouin refugees under Israeli occupation were forcibly displaced to a garbage dump. This was during the Oslo peace process, with “high hopes” for peace. During recent peace talks, a plan progressed to forcibly displace Bedouin refugees to one site accommodating 12,500 Bedouin, for settlement expansion while 18,000 more are targeted for transfer against their will. A war crime.

The documentary can also be viewed for $1.99 on the short film streaming website Indiflixx.




Many thanks for the article: We're releasing the film shortly, with a full campaign, and I'm therefore really grateful for this publicity. Just an update: HIGH HOPES has won more than one award. At our Facebook page you can see the laurels: -- it won Best Short Documentary (an Atlantis award) at Moondance, Awards of Merit at Indiefest, Best Shorts, and Accolade, runner up award in the Audience Awards at Erie and Best Documentary at Dublin Intnl. Short Film & Music Festival. Whilst not exactly at the same level as Guy Davidi's previous success (an Academy/Oscar nomination and Emmy award), we didn't expect this level of success, so are seriously chuffed. And hoping that the film (a Palestinian production) will have an impact on Israeli policies of forced displacement, demolition, coercive environment, absence of planning, lack of human rights to those living under Occupation, even when they own the land, as many Bedouin do and destruction of an indigenous culture. An indigenous culture that knows how to live in desert, knowledge one would think we citizens of the world would cherish in days of climate change!! The situation has to change. For the better.


I hope films like this -- attempts by Israeli filmmakers/companies to co-opt the struggles of those they oppress -- are considered cultural boycott targets; as a comment on an EI article years ago about the film Five Broken Cameras said, such films represent "normalisation of the most insidious type," and it's a bit disappointing to see Roger Waters, whose support of Palestine has been otherwise admirable, align himself with such a project.


Jim, I don't know you or know where you live, but from your comment I see you haven't actually watched either film or fact-checked.

Basically, it's not about normalisation, but solidarity: eg. the Israeli group, Anarchists against Walls, are fellows in the struggle at Bili'in (shown in FIVE BROKEN CAMERAS) preventing Palestinian death from live fire as with Israelis present only rubber bullets are used. 5BC brilliantly reached the mainstream with the message. Palestinians welcome such support (why wouldn’t they? Are you a nationalist perhaps? Or a Zionist working to undermine joint struggle?) - hence HIGH HOPES is a Palestinian production - Bab al Shams Village Council supported it (I'm honoured to be an honorary member of the village council, headed by Jamil Barghouti, new interim Minister against Settlements & Wall following Ziyad abu Ein’s recent murder) which represents ALL the popular committees in the OPT. The Jahalin Association is a Palestinian NGO. I'm not a film-maker, but a long term (about 20 years) activist working on Bedouin rights and home demolition; for 4 years an environmental activist in Sinai Egypt, too.

Roger Waters wasn't involved in HIGH HOPES, it was Pink Floyd (David Gilmour/Polly Samson). Waters gave rights to his recording of WE SHALL OVERCOME to NOWHERE LEFT TO GO (at I suggest you watch it).

If you watch both films, you’ll find no normalisation. I suggest: don’t kill the messenger but get the message. Nor would J M Coetzee, Noam Chomsky, Ilan Pappe or Richard Falk have given supportive reviews of HIGH HOPES...

To be useful why not work on ending the Occupation not the people working together to do so? If in Israel, let me take you to the 12,500 Bedouin facing imminent forced displacement (a war crime) including 70 near Jericho this week who received eviction orders. If in UK, your tax money is being burned by ongoing demolition by Israel of donor-funded temporary structures. Why not fight that?

Sarah Irving

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Sarah is a freelance writer and editor, author of a biography of Leila Khaled and of the Bradt Guide to Palestine, co-editor of A Bird is Not a Stone (a volume of Palestinian poetry translated into the languages of Scotland), and a PhD candidate at the University of Edinburgh. She has worked and traveled in Palestine since 2001.