Suicide Bombing “for a Higher Ideal”?

Germany’s Central Office for Political Education on “Paradise Now”

By Matthias Küntzel

Transatlantic Intelligencer, October 2005

Back in February, it was the smash hit at the Berlin Film Festival: Hany Abu-Assad’s “Paradise Now”, a sympathetic portrait of two young Palestinian suicide bombers. Now it is out in German theaters and Germany’s Federal Bureau for Political Education has produced a brochure to go with the film. Matthias Küntzel has seen the film and read the brochure. – JR

They are free in all German movie theaters where “Paradise Now” is showing: 24-page brochures published by the German federal government’s Federal Bureau for Political Education (BPB) about the suicide-bomber drama that is recommended as “especially valuable” for young people starting at fourteen years of age. The brochure is intended to be used for educational purposes, and indeed the Abaton Cinema in Hamburg is already offering special screenings for school classes. “It was important for us that the film should not be received without commentary,” explained the President of BPB, Thomas Kruger, in conversation with the newspaper the Tageszeitung (29 September 2005). “If teachers discuss the film critically, this could prevent students of Turkish or Arab origin from watching it in a naive way. Thus, the basis for their possible need to identify with the main characters will be removed.”


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