Filmmakers investigate controversial events at the Palestinian village of Tantura in 1948, where survivors claimed to witness a massacre of civilians by Israeli troops.

Tantura When the State of Israel was established in 1948, war broke out and hundreds of Palestinian villages were depopulated in its aftermath. Israelis know this as the War of Independence. Palestinians call it "Al Nakba" (the Catastrophe). In the late 1990s, graduate student Teddy Katz conducted research into a large-scale massacre that had allegedly occurred in the village of Tantura in 1948. His work later came under attack and his reputation was ruined, but 140 hours of audio testimonies remain. Director Alon Schwarz revisits former Israeli soldiers of the Alexandroni Brigade as well as Palestinian residents in an effort to re-examine what happened in Tantura and explore why the Nakba is taboo in Israeli society. The ex-soldiers, now in their 90s, recall unsettling acts of war while disquietly pausing at points they either don't remember or won't speak of. Audio from Katz's 20-year-old interviews cuts through the silence of self-preservation and exposes the ways in which power, silencing, and protected narratives can sculpt history.

Reviews and More

The film works on two levels: one is about the massacre; the other is about the psychology employed not only by perpetrators, but by the powerful forces that back them up. ” – Vox Review

A Documentary Reveals What Really Went on During Israel’s War of Independence ” – Variety Review

Tantura finally attempts to get the record on that incident straight, but as a movie, it serves an even greater purpose by bringing it to a wider public than ever before. ” – Hollywood Reporter Review

(2022) on IMDb

Making The Film

The village of Tantura in 1948, as seen in Tantura, directed by Alon Schwarz.
Photo credit: Eric and Edith Matson Photograph Collection. Courtesy of the Library of Congress. All rights reserved.

June 13, 1948: The expulsion of Tantura women, children and elderly from Furaydis to Jordan. The Red Cross is supervising. Photo credit: Beno Rothenberg collection. Courtesy of the Israel State Archives. All rights reserved.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. For more info see our Cookies Policy