Event report: Film Screening – Whose Peace will it be?

On the 26th of June the Vienna based research cluster of the APPEAR project Rooting Development in the Palestinian Context organised a screening of the film “Who’s peace will it be?” The 2015 film by Belgian director Luc Pien discusses the history and current reality of war-torn Iraq. After the screening, followed a discussion about the film and recent developments in Iraq. Helmut Krieger, researcher and lecturer at the University of Vienna and coordinator of the APPEAR project in Vienna together with Tyma Kraitt, a Vienna based journalist with a focus on the Near and Middle East, provided insightful and inspiring comments. Important aspects of their talks and the discussions were the challenge to remember what influence decades of war and sanctions had on the Iraqi society, the crucial role oil played in the formation and trajectory of Iraq, and future scenarios for the state, as the religious and ethnic divide in combination with geopolitical factors and confrontations paint a dim future for Iraq and the entire region. Nevertheless, shimmers of hope were identified in civil society initiatives and social movements from below which, against all odds, continuously struggle for social rights and against sectarian politics. The event was well attended by interested students and colleagues from the University of Vienna and beyond. Many showed interest in future events by the research cluster.