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7/11/15

Gaza: Children of the Gaza War, BBC2, review: This was not an episode of 'Homeland', but our world now - by Sally Newall

The BBC's chief international correspondent, Lyse Doucet, has said that her role in conflicts is to tell human stories; that it is right "to be on the side of the children." 

It was innocent kids' whose stories we heard in Children of the Gaza War, an uncompromising, balanced film focusing on the impact of last year's 51-day battle. 

Doucet’s team was on the ground when fighting escalated last year resulting in the deaths of 500 children (all but one Palestinian). Footage was bleak in its vividness.

We saw people in the direct aftermath of a school bombing;  bloodied and shaking. “What does all this have to do with us?“ cried 12-year-old Samar as she was treated after the attack that killed her father. Doucet had no answers but, unlike a transient news bulletin, the format meant she was able to revisit the family.

She had unparalleled access on both sides, with the children her guides to their dystopia. One gave a blast-by-blast account of the attack that killed the only Israeli victim of the conflict. Another pointed out a sibling’s discarded sandal amid the rubble of the family home with frightening composure.

To watch clips of the documentary on YouTube go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TitydQ1waoA - also see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mSiwsk1pVBI

Read more: Children of the Gaza War, BBC2, review: This was not an episode of 'Homeland', but our world now - Reviews - TV & Radio - The Independent

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