An image from the film that was dropped because it depicted antisemitism in a "pro-Israel" light. .
(photo credit: screenshot)
German public broadcaster ARD’s announcement on Friday that it will air a documentary about the outbreak of antisemitism in Europe and the Middle East comes after weeks of harsh criticism, including from Israel’s government, for allegedly censoring the widely praised film.
Volker Beck, a Green Party deputy in the Bundestag, who urged the Franco-German culture station ARTE to show the film, said on Saturday: “I welcome ARD’s willingness to show the antisemitism documentary. Now everybody can form an opinion. And that is good.”
ARD – the German association of public broadcasters that collectively is the world’s largest publicly funded broadcaster – said it will show the German- language film Chosen and Excluded – The Hate for Jews in Europe, on Wednesday evening.
Emmanuel Nahshon, the spokesman for the Israeli Foreign Ministry, told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday, “Israel believes the film should be shown and we find the decision not to show it very disturbing. Bild is to be congratulated for its initiative. The European public opinion should know the truth.”
The Bild tabloid paper showed the documentary for 24 hours on its website on Tuesday.
Beck also said that on Wednesday, the Bundestag will discuss a report on antisemitism from an independent expert commission that revealed that “40% of Germans hold modern anti-Israel, antisemitic views. We must face this problem.”
He continued, “Anti-Zionism is not a legitimate political position, but rather a movement against the Jewish and democratic state. It is Antisemitism 2.0.”
ARTE and Germany’s WDR commissioned the documentary in 2015.
France’s ARTE refused to show the exposé on contemporary antisemitism.
WDR is a regional member of ARD.
WDR and ARTE claim the film is “not balanced.” The filmmaker, Joachim Schroeder, flatly rejected the assertion that his documentary was unbalanced, saying it was targeted because it is pro-Israel and pro-Jewish.