Impact of Terror (2004)
Directed by Tim Wolochatiuk
52 minutes, English
“Impact of Terror” is a moving documentary about Israeli victims of terror struggling to cope in the aftermath of the Aug. 9, 2001 Sbarro pizzeria bombing in Jerusalem. It effectively maps out the victims’ scars – physical and emotional–and humanizes the personal struggles of individuals who are often unnamed in news reports and relegated to casualty counts.
The film follows terror victims in the years after the bombing, documenting the ripple effects of the violence–strained marriages, post-traumatic stress syndrome in which one teenaged survivor is so obsessed with cleanliness that he is unable to play normally and keep friends, a mother who buried a vivacious daughter and struggles to get out of bed and go back to work, and another family which bars its surviving children from riding public buses.
“Gafnit at the age of three matured and became like a woman. I mean she doesn’t care about children. She doesn’t care about much. It’s hard to stimulate her, to bring her back to the stage of childhood,” Michel Amar, a hardened firefighter whose wife and children survived the bombing, said of his little girl who is afraid to play outside years after having flown out of a Sbarro window due to the blast’s force. The Amar family, which lives in the center of Jeruslaem, hears “every single terrorist attack and every terrorist attack triggers anxiety all over again.”
Arnold Roth, the father of 15-year-old victim Malki, poignantly observed: “Up until the tragedy of my daughter’s murder, I was really like, I think, most people outside of Israel. These were events that were framed by a television screen. These were things that occurred and then were overtaken by normal life. Now I’ve learned that for the people who are touched by an act of terror in a personal way, it isn’t an event which you then work your way past and, as the expression goes, life goes on. It actually keeps happening every minute and every day.”
The video conveys that message to viewers who can now appreciate the ongoing struggles and humanity of Israeli victims of terror.
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