Decades of violent conflict in the Middle East have created a fertile breeding ground for stereotypes, prejudices, cognitive biases, fear and mistrust of the “other” within Israel, the West Bank and Gaza, Turkey and the broader region.


The longstanding Israeli-Palestinian conflict exacerbates the forces of instability and extremism in the Middle East, and thwarts effective regional cooperation in multiple spheres. The hostility that exists between Israelis and Palestinians, and between Israelis and their Arab neighbors, is perpetuated by the separation between the different populations and is often sustained and strengthened by political leaders, the media, education systems and extremists.

In these precarious times and in light of the recent cycle of extreme violence and instability that is destabilizing the whole region, including Israel, Gaza, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Turkey and other countries, we believe the most important thing is to strengthen the dialog in the community of filmmakers we created and strengthen the opportunity for additional filmmakers from the region to participate and benefit from the unique experience Greenhouse offers.


Our filmmakers from Gaza, the West Bank, Algeria, Afghanistan, Egypt, Iran, Israel, Lebanon, Tunisia, Morocco and Turkey have had the opportunity to forge professional and personal ties with one another during the GH seminars. Since GH has enabled them to create a deep knowledge and understanding of each other, the dialogue between them continues, even throughout these tiring times.

With extremist groups on the rise in the region and the brutal and violent persecution of minority groups it is more urgent than ever to continue this unique network of artists from a conflict-ridden region. Over the past 12 years, despite the many violent conflicts in the region, GH has persevered and upheld its critical role as a meeting point for regional filmmakers, in which they are able to engage in genuine in-depth discussions about the difficulties their communities are experiencing and safely express their opinions about what is happening and what may be ways to move forward creatively and constructively. We believe that now is exactly the time to strengthen these ties and sustain this unique platform for filmmakers to form a real dialogue on the pressing socio-political issues of this region. When there is no dialogue and people are separated, it is impossible to get to know one another and strive to create a more just and peaceful society.