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Until I saw this film and its Haaretz segment I thought that the US press was unfairly criticizing them for defending themselves against the rockets the Palestinians continue to launch indiscriminately against Israeli civilians. The most incredible part of the documentary was hearing that many Israelis don't want to know about the oppression they sponsor. It reminded me of the WW II German civilians who didn't want to know what was happening in the Nazi death camps.

Joe Kaffe
Las Vegas, Nevada

I've watched the film several times thanks to TiVo. This film should be required viewing for every high school and college student in the USA, and every library should have it in their collection.

Bronx, New York

Just how scared is the press of revealing the truth? Enough to back the wrong person on an election campaign?


saw both Still life .. tchech. animation, and Democracy on Deadline. I feel encouraged on my path: Truth telling has always been my top priority. I can always use more encouragement to keep up and dare more. Knowing the truth means having the power to engage and to change - one's heart and mind, and the conditions around us. Very grateful for the excellence and message in your films. Pls Public TV, keep showing it! These are THE True Heroes - who shed light on our enormous darkness, especially stupidity and cruaulty, - who show us the urgency to make changes and to have com-passion. Of course it's up to us The People! No one else will do it for us -certainly not the ones in power, who never have enough of it.


I was inspired and awe-struck by the courage of the investigative journalists portrayed in this documentary. This is what true journalism is all about and shows us why so many journalists have been murdered. The truth is more powerful than the sword. Thank you.

Thomas M. Ricks
Havertown, Pa

I was riveted to my chair by your IL: Democracy on Deadline program in the Philly area, Nov. 28'06. Wow, what a program, significantly, superb on Russia (dear Anne Polikovskaya), on Palestine (I got to see my two heroes at work at last, hurrah for Amira and Gideon), on the US (thank god for the LA Times digging out Weldon's miscreant past; he was my district rep. for 20 miserable years...yeh, LAT!) and on Afghanistan and its young unhappy women (Bush, you need to overthrow the men of Afghanistan who are the real terrorists!).

Philadelphia, PA

It was an amazing documentary!!! One that you can rarely (if at all) see on popular American media. Independent journalism is a cornerstone of any democracy and which is eroded as much by special interests and the power struggle of the so called "elite" as by the ignorance of the masses. We need more independent thinkers. We need more people like the journalists featured in this film.

As to the comment below, that the Jewish journalists do not deserve to be called "courageous" because violence against the media in Israel is not that wide spread: I just want to say that I, personally, find it quite courageous that one can go and spent a significant amount of time in a war zone to report provided that he/she is viewed as an enemy by both the locals (due to his ethnic background) and his own (due to his/hers reports). How many of us would do the same?


This was an amazing program. Something that we readers have been waiting for for a very long time. This film should be showed on FOX News, CNN and all other major news channels. Journalists these days tend to forget their job as "Truth Represantatives". Thank you, thank you, thank you for showing all of us that there is still hope.

C. M.

A splendid documentary, of which we have far too view. Please continue to show this docmentary producer's work again.

Robert Canfield
St Louis, MO

I just discovered that Independent Lens is not available on our PBS station [KETC in St Louis]. I am in another city and last night I watched "Democracy on Deadline." It was not only well done but it presents material that ought to be shown widely throughout the United States [and elsewhere]. Thank you for all that went into the show. And thank you for making it available to the public on DVD. I am a university professor and have just asked for our library to obtain a copy. I want to make sure that my students have access to it.


The show in general was good. however, the Israel segment was not groundbreaking. HaAretz is a left wing paper. The segment ignored issues such as health laws regarding the transport of live animals, or terrorist attacks, such as why the Jenin reporters' front windshied was broken. Has PBS ever done a story on the repression of the Settlers in the Oslo years? Israel is a small country. The Middle East has far different human stnadards than the West. The lady reprter in Gaza has benn called a traitor. Her misguided altruism is aiding a military enemy.

Linda Pagan
New York New York

Congratulations on Democracy on Deadline. Very compelling, very important, very relevant. It's shattering to see the human costs on "the other side of the fence"

Cresskill, NJ

Re "Democracy on Deadline": Haaretz, and other Israeli media, have many reporters covering the Palestinian territories and doing a fine job. Gideon Levy and Amira Hass are not among them. Their reporting is heavily affected by their political bias, and is closer to Al-Jazeera-style propaganda. They keep mentioning the criticism against them as proof of the value of their work. In fact, most of the criticism is centered on the issue of dishonest reporting, i.e. they omit from their stories any facts that might interfere with their political agenda.

In addition, calling them "courageous" is a misplaced honor. Consider the film segment where Levy is barking orders and threats over the phone to the military officer in charge of the checkpoint. In Russia, Africa, Mexico, and some of the other places where journalists are frequently assassinated, no sane reporter would use this kind of tone when addressing the military.

Reporting from a country whose freedom of the press is second to none does not take much courage. If anyone in the Israeli government had wished to silence inconvenient reporters, they would have done so long ago. In fact, nothing of the sort has ever happened.

Danbury, CT

Last night's independent Lens episode was very moving and inspiring. It has always occured to me that similarly in the US, popular TV & radio stations such as ABC, NBC etc., do not cover any of these critical issues happening around the world at all. "World News" hardly gets out of America and I am getting tired of that. Only through PBS, we can open our eyes by TV viewing.

Lewiston, Maine

Program 11/21/06--Independent Lens--On Journalism I found one of the most inspiring stories of the commitment of individual journalists to information accuracy to the public. More emphasis on this area of jounalists' commitment will be appreciated.


It is about time.

Richard Lake
Spokane Washington

Ok, the 21st of November show on free press has devolved into a whipping session on the bush administration. If the show is about "lets get out of iraq", then let's not title the show "freedom of the press". Gimme a break.

Chicago, IL

This was a great program. I am a reader of Gideon Levy and Amira Hass for years, at this was an amazing opportunity for me to see how they work and feel. For all that were impressed by this program, PLEASE go to the Haaretz website and look for their material. It is heartbreaking truth about what western society is responsible for. Thank you PBS for this program.


Tonights program on Independent Lens, the dilema of true Journalism was an eye opener. It was however gratifying that there are still individuals who are living their convictions and willing to tell the story. I solute their courage and the PBS staff for bringing it to the publics attention. It is however unfortunate that this cannot be done in prime time where more Americans can be witness to the truth.

V Topp
New York
Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!! Thank you to all the journalists who have a conscience and are risking their lives for democracy.

Paul Nassar MD

Independent Lens, program of November 21, 2006, was excellent. The courage of these journalists and what they do to preserve democracy is commendable. One of the few programs that gave a real-life exposure of what it means to occupy a people by a military force. Keep up the good work.

j latsko
los angeles CA

incredibly compelling!
being a news junkie, i was glued to this program.
to meet the real people behind the stories, to honor politkovskaya, to have such a diverse display of journalists' bravery!
i was in awe.
could the filmakers not be persuaded to do future editions - highlighting more current events and stories from around the world in such an in-depth and unhurried way?
i would be there viewing and taking notes!
thanks to them and to independent lens!

Santa Barbara CA

Democracy on Deadline is the kind of prgram that should be shown in high schools and universities around the world.It was moving and inspiring to see such noble examples of the human spirit,and the love of truth in action.Please carry on,let the world know.

Hermosa Beach, CA

Excelent report on Haaretz journalits and owner/publisher. A good example for all whole news media!


It was fantastic!

Every journalist in the U.S should have to watch it.

Maybe it will help them remember....

Coralie Farlee, Ph.D.
Washington, D. C.

Re: tonight's "talk back"/discussion at Busboys and Poets after "Democracy on Demand" film. I was with the discussants (Jonathan Landay and Deborah Nelson) up until the answer to the last point. They said 'WE WROTE/THE PEOPLE DIDN'T PAY ATTENTION." But WE DID!!! -- we MARCHED -- in DC (over 100,000), and in 50 plus countries around the world -- 3 major marches all together.

It was the Administration and Congress that didn't pay attention. We, the readers of "The Nation," "The Progressive," etc. etc. and e-mail newsletters, including Scott Ritter who was mentioned.

But, please don't blame US (the citizens, especially those of us in DC with no voting representation) for not paying attention!!!


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