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LOCAL Commentary :: Civil & Human Rights : Education & Youth : Peace & War

Rachel Corrie, An American Conscience film discussion

I saw the movie "Rachel, an American Conscience" at the Resource Center for Non-violence on Sunday Oct 2nd at 7PM.
I was curious to see if the showing would bring out any counter-demonstrators such as Becky Johnson, etc. I was also curious to see if any of the images presented would shed light on the question of weather or not RC's death could have been an accident as claimed by Johnson.

The movie is available to check out from the Resource Center. There were also some extra copies on sale that night. I'm not sure if those are available anymore or not.

I did find the images I was looking for in the movie. It shows
a)In a view of the side of the bulldozer, it is clear that the hood of the bulldozer in the movie is very long. Front views of the bulldozer distort this perspective, making it seem that the hood is the same as that on a subcompact car when in fact it is more like that of a semi truck or Cadillac. I myself was rear ended, ever so gently, by a semi truck because the driver could not see my Geo Metro over the hood of his truck.
b) The driver is shown sitting down with his chin at the same level as the bottom of the windowsill, kind of like what it would look like if your 3 year old were standing on tip toe to peek out the living room window.

There are other pieces of evidence that point in the other direction, towards RC's death not being an accident:
c)It is typical for a second person to be standing up in the cab of the bulldozer to aid the driver in steering the bulldozer.
d) The team of protesters was present for 3 hours before RC's death.
e) 2 or 3 tanks typically surround a bulldozer to keep potentially hostile Palestinians away and could have warned the driver via radio that RC was right in front of the bulldozer. This was apparently not done as the driver said he did not stop because he was not given any orders to stop.
f) In the movie, the driver is quoted saying he thought the person he ran over was dead.

I discussed this stuff with two of the members of the ISM who were available after the movie. One of them said that at first he was skeptical that RC was murdered. But later after examining the evidence, he became convinced that she was murdered.

The movie mentions that there is a complete video of RC's death that only a few people have seen. They make the claim that the driver was waiving them off before RC was run over. I should have asked the ISM people about that, but I missed that point with them.

The movie also touches on the shooting deaths of two other ISM activists, one of whom was shot in the back of the head while trying to chaperone a little girl out of the line of IDF fire.

The ISM activists at the event suggested that Caterpillar, the maker of the bulldozer that killed RC, be boycotted and banned from various construction sites. Caterpillar makes shoes, hats and toys as well as bulldozers. Caterpillar was unwilling to have a meeting with RC's parents to discus her death or anything else.

Finally, it is unfortunate that Becky Johnson and Lee Kaplan are banned from SC Indymedia. I'm sure they would respond to these allegations with comments of their own. At one point before she was banned, Becky Johnson posted a diagram of the bulldozer in question, but of course it was promptly censored ... er, I mean deleted.

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