Special Screenings
Traveling Festival


USA vs. Al-Arian
(99 minutes) Norway/Palestine/USA
Director: Line Halvorsen
Producer: Jan Dalchow

In February 2003, university professor and pro-Palestinian civil rights activist Sami Al-Arian was arrested in Tampa, Florida, charged with providing material support to a terror organization. For two and a half years he was held in solitary confinement, denied basic privileges and given limited access to his attorneys. While the Bush administration considered this a landmark case in its campaign against international terrorism, Sami Al-Arian claims he was targeted in an attempt to silence his political views. The film follows Sami Al-Arian's wife Nahla and their five children throughout his 6 month-long trial. This is a nightmare come to life, as a man is prosecuted for his beliefs rather than his actions. It presents democracy in a new light in a post-9/11 culture of fear, where "security measures" trump free speech and punishment is meted out in the name of protection. It is an example of how the American government's hunt for terrorists is a struggle that can be seen from multiple angles.

Line Halvorsen has worked as a director and editor on more than 20 documentaries and travel series for Norwegian and International TV since 1997. She received her degree in film at the University of Trondheim and specialized in documentary film at Volda College, Norway. From 2002-2004, Halvorsen lived in Bethlehem on the Occupied West Bank where she made the award-winning documentary A Stone's Throw Away (2003) about the lives of three young Palestinian children. With the film A Stone's Throw Away, Halvorsen contributed to a renewed debate on the desperate plight of many Palestinian children and encouraged sympathy and understanding for innocent victims living in a conflict area.

Jan Dalchow has worked as a producer, director and editor in Norwegian Film and TV production since 1995. He is the founder of the Oslo based film and TV production company Dalchows Verden, (Dalchow's World), which works primarily with documentary and fiction films focusing on human rights issues. His resume includes the documentaries: I Love Whom I Want To Love (1996), nominated for Norway's best documentary; the Norwegian Gullruten winner Dirty, Sinful Me (2000); the theater released 100% Human (2005) and the short fiction film Precious Moments (2002), which won the Teddy Award at the Berlin International Film Festival 2003 and best short film at the Tribeca Film Festival.

Contact information:
Toril Simonsen
Norwegian Film Institute
Dronningens Gate 16, PO Box 482 Sentrum
0105 Oslo
E-mail: ts@nfi.no
Web site: www.usavsalarian.com
©2007 United Nations Association Film Festival (UNAFF)
Select a film

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American Soldier
BAM 6.6 Humanity Has No Borders
The Battle of Chernobyl
The Champ
Damage Done: The Drug War Odyssey
The Devil Came on Horseback
The Digital Dump: Exporting Re-use and Abuse to Africa
The Fighting Cholitas
Global Focus IV: The New Environmentalists
Gypsy Caravan
Hidden Wounds
Holy Warriors
Hot House
Journey of the Piano Tuner
Like a Ship In the Night
The Lost Children of Cite Soleil
A Minority Report
Mr. Dial Has Something to Say
My Dreams Never Lie
No Place For You at This Workplace
On a Tightrope
Orange Revolution
Saudi Solutions
Soldiers of Conscience
Special Circumstances
Toxic Bust: Chemicals and Breast Cancer
Tsepong: A Clinic Called Hope
USA vs Al-Arian
Willie Francis Must Die Again