WATCH THE FULL DOCUMENTARY HERE:
About the Film
After the resistance movement in Fallujah successfully repelled the first U.S. led siege of Fallujah in April of 2004, Fallujah became a symbol of heroism and resistance in Iraq. In the United States Fallujah was made into a symbol of terrorism. The U.S. mainstream media described Fallujah as a “hotbed of anti-Americanism” and an “insurgent stronghold”, and gave little mention of the 300,000 civilians that lived there. In November of 2004, the U.S. launched a massive siege on Fallujah that killed anywhere between 800 and 6,000 civilians, forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes, and left much of the city in ruins. From that point on Fallujah became a symbol to much of the world of cruelty, devastation, and occupation.
The suffering inflicted on Fallujah did not end in 2004. Life for the people who chose to return to their city never improved. The U.S. imposed security measures and curfews that made living a normal life in Fallujah impossible. Residents already had to struggle to make ends meet in their dilapidated city, but the constant security check-points, ID card scans, and arrests only made life harder. Food and medicine were scarce, and they remain scarce to this day.
Worst of all, since 2004 there has been a dramatic increase in birth defects, infant mortality, mental retardation, and cancers of all sorts in Fallujah. The birth defects are truly horrifying. Babies have been born with six fingers on each hand, scaly skin, missing limbs, two heads, and there has been one case of a child born with a single eye in the center of his forehead. Experts blame chemical weapons used by the U.S. during the 2004 sieges, like white phosphorous and possibly depleted uranium.
The few studies that have been done suggest that there is “genetic damage” within the population, and the evidence suggests ionizing radiation exposure as the cause. This has led some to say that the health crisis in Fallujah is worse than in Hiroshima and Nagasaki after the atomic bombs. So many children in Fallujah are now being born horribly deformed or mentally retarded that many women are afraid to try to have families.
The U.S. occupation has had horrible effects on the Iraqi population, but Fallujah has suffered more than any other Iraqi city. Fallujah is to the Occupation of Iraq, what My Lai was to the Vietnam War, and what Hiroshima and Nagasaki were to World War II.
We recognize that, as students and working people, we have a responsibility to control our government, and we acknowledge that justice requires more than just words – we must take action. We cannot sit at home and hope someone else will end these inhuman occupations. We need to stand up and do it ourselves. As long as Fallujah continues to suffer, and until Iraq is free of unwanted foreign influence, we will do everything in our power to end the occupation of Iraq by U.S. troops and private security contractors.
We will stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Fallujah, and we will fight to eradicate the culture of militarism and individualism that is destroying us at home. We will not let Fallujah disappear from our collective memory, and we implore our friends and families to never forget what was done there. Fallujah is a symbol of what war and imperialism will always lead to, and it is a symbol of the legacy that we are leaving behind us. Fallujah is there to remind us of what we have done wrong in the past, and to make us think about what we need to do differently in the future.