Film Opens Eyes to African Genocide:
ASA, Del Walters Host Documentary Screening
By Bekah Oester
Journalist Del Walters, producer and director of the documentary film, "Apocalypse Africa: Made in America," and a visiting professor in the Department of Communications at Bowie State University, presented his film to students on Oct. 21.
The documentary screening was part of a week long observance called "Break the Silence Congo Week," which was hosted by the African Student Association, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity and the National Minority Male Health Project.
The film, which is supported by celebrities such as Babyface and John Travolta, made its debut at the Cannes Film Festival in 2007 and addresses the millions of deaths occurring in Africa due to multiple civil wars, starvation, and disease. The situation is referred to in the film as an "assisted genocide" as far as the U.S. is concerned, because they are "allowing them to kill themselves."
Although the majority of the trauma in the film takes place in Africa, the alleged American hand in things is made clear through secretly recorded White House conversations, the country's use of African space and labor for many of their abundant natural resources (rubber, gold, diamonds, oil, etc.), an alleged U.S.-approved assassination of an African leader, two National Security Study Memorandums passed in regards to the African population, and other secret films and documents that Walters brings to light. Interviews are conducted with former National Security Council staff member Roger Morris, former president of TransAfrica Forum, Randall Robinson, and Brian Clowes of Human Life International. The film also contends that presidents Nixon and Ford were both accused of playing a role in genocides in Cambodia and Indonesia.
Walters compared the phenomena in his film to the Holocaust, asking "What would you have done if you were alive during that time?" While students may not have had a specific answer, it was agreed upon that something would have to have been done rather than nothing. While many students were too young or not alive to help during many crises throughout history, Walters made his purpose for showing the film to students clear: "You're not too young anymore." In regards to the continuous deaths in Africa, he said "We as African Americans let it happen."
So far, over 20 million Africans have died and the number is consistently increasing. While the film inspired many students to find ways to help, one way Walters said would not be productive is to boycott products as it will only hurt the Africans more. One easy way everyone can help, however, is simply to go online to YouTube and view the trailer for the film and pass it on to others so that it will generate hits and become more noticed to the public. Another related trailer to view from the same company that Walters encourages people to watch is for "NSSM The Flood."
Copies of Walters' film on DVD are available for rent through Netflix and for rent or sale at Blockbuster.