John Pilger, Christopher Matin (Chagos Islands/UK/USA) 56'

Stealing a Nation is an extraordinary film about the plight of the people of the Chagos Islands in the Indian Ocean˜secretly and brutally expelled from their homeland by British governments in the late 1960s and early 1970s to make way for an American military base. The base, on the main island of Diego Garcia, was a launch pad for the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. Diego Garcia is America‚s largest military base in the world outside the US. There are more than 4,000 troops, two bomber runways, thirty warships and a satellite spy station. Before the Americans came, more than 2,000 people lived on the islands, many with roots back to the late 18th century. There were thriving villages, a school, a hospital, a church, a railway and an undisturbed way of life. The islands were, and still are, a British crown colony. In the 1960s, the government of Harold Wilson struck a secret deal with the United States to hand over Diego Garcia. Unknown to Parliament and to the US Congress, the British government plotted with Washington to expel the entire population˜in secrecy and in breach of the United Nations Charter.


John Pilger was born and educated in Sydney. He has been a war correspondent, film-maker and playwright. Based in London, he has written from many countries and has twice won Journalist of the Year in Britain for his work in Vietnam and Cambodia.
Among a number of other awards, he has been International Reporter of the Year and winner of the United Nations Association Media Prize. For his broadcasting, he has won an American Television Academy Award, an Emmy and the Richard Dimbleby Award, given by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts.

Contact Information:

John Hoskyns-Abrahall, President
Bullfrog Films
PO Box 149
Oley, PA 19547

©2005 United Nations Association Film Festival (UNAFF)