Dear friends, supporters and colleagues,
An end of year round-up is always interesting – a mixed sense of have made progress yet realising the scale of any given issue is so great that there is always so much further to go..
In 2017, we made progress on existing work and launched some new projects… Below are some links to our 2017 highlights.
Wishing you peace and happiness in 2018.
From everyone at Tipping Point
Throughout 2017 our Open Bethlehem film continued to be screened in Europe and the Middle East. We had a special screening at Friends House in September, after which Leila left to tour the USA with a special push between October and Christmas. In mid-December, screenings were held on Capitol Hill and it was great honour for Leila to give the OB Passport to Congresswoman Barbara Lee – the only elected USA representative to vote against the Iraq invasion post 9/11 attacks, making her a hero of the anti-war movement. The screenings came as Trump declared the USA would recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. There is now a plan to develop a Congressional visit to Bethlehem. Open Bethlehem is now on Vimeo.
We Are Many is available on i-tunes and continues to be screened. We can’t help but wonder if the film’s title was, in part, the inspiration for the Labour Party’s ‘For the Many Not the Few.’ Jeremy Corbyn is one of the key contributors to the film and we are thrilled that he received the Sean McBride Peace Award for 2017 from the International Peace Bureau in Geneva.
We made a short film for our Make Apartheid History campaign about Settler Colonialism, marking the centenary of the Balfour Declaration in November 2017 (read more here). We also filmed our wonderful ‘In Clem’s Own Words’ theatre readings which brought our Attlee Remembered weekend to a close. And we began development for a new cinema documentary – MLK Global (working title)- to begin filming in February 2018
We had a busy year on our From Pink to Prevention campaign which calls on government and major breast cancer charities to act on evidence that links environmental and occupational risks for breast cancer. In May we shared our action toolkit as part of our Rachel Carson Day activity and in September/October we campaigned on the urgent need to retain EU chemicals regulation in UK law, after Brexit. We held a special event at Portcullis House, hosted by Helen Hayes MP, on this issue – full report here.
We now have a new dedicated Five Percent campaign website. We have secured renewed funding from Polden-Puckham to support our work over the next 2 years – primarily advocating to international development agencies and political parties the need to address the negative impact of excessive military spending on impeding international development. The Labour Party is conducting and International Development Policy Review we will be submitting to their Task Force the proposal that military spending needs to be recognised as a structural issue impeding international development and that the UK can lead the way in opening up this debate.
Make Apartheid History marked three calendar moments in 2017. In May we marked the ‘Nakba’ and filmed Ahmed Masoud’s play CAMOUFLAGE ; throughout July, Make Apartheid History promoted the UK Tour of the utterly brilliant one man show AND HERE I AM, directed by Zoe Lafferty, performed by Ahmed Tobasi and based on his life story. On Mandela Day (18 July) , we screened a selection of MAH films after the Edinburgh performances; and in November we marked the centenary of the Balfour Declaration, for which we made a short film about Settler Colonialism. To help understand more about why apartheid applies to Israel, our MAH video page has a number of short films where Palestinians, Israelis and South Africans explain why. https://makeapartheidhistory.org/video-gallery/
MLK GLOBAL In January 2017 we launched our Martin Luther King Project 2018 – now renamed MLK Global. April 2018 will mark 50 years since Reverend Dr Martin Luther King was assassinated. His ‘last great exertion’ in 1967/68 was the Poor People’s Campaign plus an Economic Bill of Rights. MLK Global calls for an end in our lifetime to Dr.King’s ‘triple evils of poverty, racism and militarism . MLK Global suggests this can be realised through a renewed international recognition and call for Dr King’s ambitious 1968 Economic Bill of Rights, updated for today. It offers a universal economic bill of rights fit for the 21st century that will reverse economic inequalities, racism, militarism and climate change – factors which combined, are destroying families, communities, nations and the very planet we live on. Throughout 2017 we built on our USA networking and began plans for April 2018 second wave outreach on the proposal.
“These are revolutionary times. All over the globe men are revolting against old systems of exploitation and oppression, and out of the wounds of a frail world, new systems of justice and equality are being born. The shirtless and barefoot people of the land are rising up as never before. The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light. We in the West must support these revolutions. Our only hope today lies in our ability to recapture the revolutionary spirit and go out into a sometimes hostile world declaring eternal hostility to poverty, racism, and militarism.A genuine revolution of values means in the final analysis that our loyalties must become ecumenical rather than sectional. Every nation must now develop an overriding loyalty to mankind as a whole in order to preserve the best in their individual societies. This call for a worldwide fellowship that lifts neighborly concern beyond one’s tribe, race, class, and nation is in reality a call for an all-embracing and unconditional love for all mankind.”
4 April 1967, Riverside Church, Beyond Vietnam speech, Dr Martin Luther King
ATTLEE NATION & Attlee Remembered mini-festival:
Attlee Nation is a new project from TPNS which wants to help address the fact that Clement Attlee, widely accepted as the greatest British Prime Minister of the 20th century, is so little known about. Our mini-festival weekend Oct 7/8 marked the 50th anniversary of his death in 1967 and celebrated his entire life, one of extraordinary achievement.
The goal of Attlee Nation and Attlee Remembered is to better know, appreciate and value the enormous contribution made by Clem Attlee to British society, right up to the present day, through the implementation of the most wide-ranging set of radical domestic policies which subsequently transformed British society after 1945 under his leadership. We hope to give confidence and courage from the lessons of the 1945-51 administration – that inequality, widespread poverty, broken public services, housing crisis and disaffection with the old-guard political class can be overcome – again. It was overcome in 1945 by Attlee and an administration that went on to lay the foundations of a progressive society for the next seven decades. Attlee also shows that leadership style can come in different forms and that ‘policy over personality’ can serve us better than the reverse.
We screened films, had a brilliant series of discussions and ended with a very special theatre performance. Our contributors included leading Attlee biographer Francis Beckett along with Ken Loach, Jeremy Hardy, Melissa Benn, Rachel Holmes, Adjoa Andoh, Kika Markham, John Christenson, Cat Hobbs, Pablo Navarette, Prof Sally Tomlinson and Prof Jonathan Dickens. It was covered in the Guardian and the Mirror, with Paul Mason, Michael Sheen, Michael Rosen among others, sharing on social media. Photos and videos of all events here.
The venue was the beautiful Georgian Sands Films Studios in Rotherhithe – we look forward to many more collaborations!