Watching Israeli TV’s Fauda as a Palestinian

Yasmeen Serhan in The Atlantic:

Many Palestinians would disagree on political grounds with my decision to watch Fauda. In fact, some have called for a boycott of the show. “It is an anti-Arab, racist, Israeli propaganda tool that glorifies the Israeli military’s war crimes against the Palestinian people,” the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement said of the show in March, adding, “By sanitizing and normalizing these crimes, Fauda is directly complicit in promoting and justifying these grave human rights violations.”

Yet the harsh reality of Israel’s continued military presence in the Palestinian territories isn’t absent from Fauda, despite this and similar criticisms. The show depicts an elderly woman being stopped at one of the many military checkpoints around and within the West Bank, where an armed Israeli soldier rummages through her bags. It also shows Israeli soldiers trashing and seizing property from a Palestinian home during a raid. And one of this season’s main plot arcs concerns a group of young Palestinian terrorists who realize that they’re more likely to gain entry into Israel proper (from which the vast majority of Palestinians are barred, except on certain holidays) if they speak Hebrew and pretend to be religious Jews from one of Israel’s West Bank settlements. These are the daily, almost mundane, images of occupation that linger in the background of Fauda.

More here.