Israel is the only country in the world where there is compulsory army service for women. While this singularity is common place, we rarely hear about the experiences of Israeli women soldiers and how this experience has influenced their lives. When these stories specifically focus on women’s military service in Gaza and the West Bank, it is pioneering stuff.
In Tamar Yarom’s award winning documentary six Israeli women share their experiences as soldiers in the occupied territories during the bloody period since the first Palestinian uprising.
With impressive candor they talk about what they saw and what they did; the way they tried to make sense of this ‘other world’ and, how they tried to reconcile their experiences with the self they were familiar with, stripped of army uniform.
To See if I’m Smiling powerfully explores the way gender, ethics, power and moral responsibility interact in times of war. Its rare tapestry of women’s testimonies leaves us to ponder some of the most burning questions of our times.