Gaza Shield, completed in January 2011, focuses on how the web has become a new battlefield in the ongoing War on Peace. Hatred pours out from every corner of the Internet and Professor Tania Khalaf used her camera to look at three artists who seek to protest the electronic assault with their video game knowledge, peaceful activism, and creativity. In proving that everyone has the access and the tools to promote peace, Gaza Shield stands to celebrate a small video game that is nothing less than a giant victory in the War on Peace.
Most recently, Gaza Shield picked up the Special Jury Prize at the Beirut International Documentary Festival held in Beirut, Lebanon, which was held in late December 2011. The film was screened December 18 with Khalaf in attendance to for a Q&A session afterwards.
And one award was not enough -- Gaza Shield also received the Official Best of the Fest Award out of 30,000 short films and 7,000 feature films under consideration which puts Khalaf's documentary in the top 5% of indie films considered at the Beirut festival. During her trip to Lebanon, Khalaf was also interviewed on LBCI (Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation International) about Gaza Shield on December 12.
Also in December, Gaza Shield was shown at the Middle East Studies Association FilmFest in Washington, D.C.
In November, Khalaf talked about her film on KFAI in Minneapolis when Gaza Shield was screened at the Twin Cities Arab Film Festival in Columbia Heights, Minnesota.
Khalaf had wide-ranging screenings of Gaza Shield in October at the SF DocFest (San Francisco Documentary Festival) in San Francisco, California; the Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival in Hot Springs, Arkansas; and at UNT in cooperation with the Contemporary Arab and Muslim Cultural Studies Institute (CAMCSI). At UNT, Khalaf also participated in a panel discussion about the Arab Spring uprisings to examine the causes and predict what lies ahead in the Middle East with professors from political science, art history, international studies and sociology.
In September, Gaza Shield received the 2011 Humanitarian Award from the Third World Independent Film Festival in Silicon Valley, California; and was screened at the Salina DocFest, Festival internazionale del documentario narrativo in Salina, Italy along with DOCUTAH, the Southern Utah International Film Festival in St. George, Utah.
The University Film and Video Association held an August screening of Gaza Shield in Boston, Massachusetts, which followed the film's widespread July screenings in Australia as part of the Arab Film Festival in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Canberra, and Adelaide.