How Western films and TV shows depict the Israeli-Palestinian conflict


Western movies and TV shows tend to shy away from tackling the unremitting, violent struggle between Israelis and Palestinians. The decades-old conflict can sometimes feel inaccessible to Western audiences who are accustomed to more peaceful, simpler relations. It’s also a difficult subject to cram into a neatly-packaged narrative. The conflict offers no closure, no happy ending, no ending at all.

But a few Western films and TV shows have dared to take on the conflict in their story lines. Some notable examples:

Munich (2005)

Based on the HBO film Sword of Gideon, Steven Spielberg’s Munich depicts Operation Wrath of God, the Mossad’s secret operation to track down and kill the Palestinians responsible for kidnapping and murdering 11 Israeli athletes at the 1972 Summer Olympics. The film was nominated for a host of Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Director (it didn’t win either). Some viewers took issue with its historical authenticity. But mostly the film received praise for being more nuanced…

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