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To Die in Jerusalem

To Die in Jerusalem
1:15:04 | 2007

Categories: Politics, War, Documentary

Ever since 17-year-old Rachel Levy, an Israeli, was killed in Jerusalem by a Palestinian suicide bomber, her mother Avigail has found hardly a moment's peace. Levy's killer was Ayat al-Akhras, a 17-year-old schoolgirl from a Palestinian refugee camp several miles away. The two young women looked unbelievably alike. This film explores - through both families' losses and Avigail Levy's search for answers - the hope for peace in the Palenstinian-Israeli conflict.


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May 4, 2017
Well done for the amount of time they had and the number of obstacles faced. Its a grim look into the suffering of both mothers, and while they do not see eye-to-eye, we must recognize they're still mothers and both lost their daughters in a very difficult situation surrounded by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Khandra (Ayat's mother) lost her daughter, who was to be married, attend school and grow up to become a journalist, which was her dream. Avigail lost her daughter, who grew up in America and did not fully grasp the realities that Israel held in store for her. Rachel held innocence in her heart while Ayat's innocence was lost during hardship under Israeli occupation. We must also remember, they were merely teens on the brink of adulthood... so its heartbreaking to think that their lives ended tragically and over time with more research it's discovered Rachel was stopped while Ayat passed through into the grocery store, and it is believed they walked side-by-side prior to Ayat detonating her bomb. Nobody won here, both lost their lives and nobody benefitted from this. Avigail got no justice from the loss of Rachel and Khandra only got validation from her community, but no amount of validation will bring back her daughter and cause them less pain than they already are. Bringing this to a close, nobody won... and there were no heroes. Rachel was an innocent victim and Ayat was too... Rachel for crossing paths with Ayat, Ayat for being taken advantage of by her own heartache and urge for revenge... combine that with thug Fatah operatives in her reach, they got her training prior to her going to Jerusalem. The Palestinians label her a hero for their cause, but it benefitted nothing for their cause other than the Al-Akhras family losing their home (which is not shown in the film) and instant gratification that their family held 'honor' due to their daughter's 'bravery' Its a sad fate for Ayat, in which I can say she was not a hero... she doesn't need the title 'hero', she's another victim.



April 10, 2016
a grade