When John Crane began studying the history of Israel and Palestine many years ago, he was surprised by the difference between accounts by historians and those he read in newspapers. In 2005, he visited Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories with members of the Coalition for Peace with Justice, to meet with peace organizations and learn about the current situation.
The filmmaker and the other volunteers helped the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions to rebuild a home near Jerusalem, and they traveled to refugee camps, Israeli settlements in Occupied Territory, and areas of Bethlehem that tourists never see. They met leaders of peace organizations, participated in nonviolent demonstrations, and talked to taxi drivers and hotel workers. And they witnessed acts of violence and oppression.
In 2008, Crane returned to Jerusalem and revisited people he had filmed three years earlier. Jerusalem Journal gives viewers a glimpse into aspects of Palestinian life that they are unlikely to get from newspapers and broadcast television.
John Crane is a retired (for now) former business owner who splits his time between volunteering with nonprofit organizations and learning documentary filmmaking. Previously, he was an owner and chief financial officer of Carolina Converting, a manufacturer of puzzles and games. He has taught at Campbell University and has served as treasurer and a member of the Board of Directors of the Coalition for Peace with Justice, a human rights organization in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
John Crane earned the Certificate in Documentary Arts at the Center for Documentary Studies in May 2011.
Read more about the spring 2011 Certificate in Documentary Arts graduates and their projects at cdsporch.org/archives/6828.
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