June 14, 2018
Documentary film traces journey of a survivor of torture and imprisonment
in Syria as he seeks to rebuild life in exile, bring attention to other victims
WASHINGTON — The world premiere of 82 Names: Syria, Please Don’t Forget Us, a documentary film about Mansour Omari, a refugee of torture and imprisonment in Bashar al-Assad’s Syria, will be held at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum on Wednesday, June 20, at 7 p.m.
In the film, Omari, living in exile, reflects on bringing attention to the brutal regime he escaped from, visiting Holocaust memorials in Germany to learn about the importance of preserving the past and countering extremist ideology. To connect people with the crisis in Syria, Omari worked with the Museum to create an exhibition called Syria: Please Don’t Forget Us about the individuals he knew in prison. 82 Names is a powerful story of how one man risked his life to document atrocity crimes and bring that evidence to the world.
“I survived, but others are still underground,” Omari says. “It’s my responsibility, and my duty, to have the world know these names.”
Omari was arrested in February of 2012 and spent nearly a year in secret government prisons. In one of those facilities several prisoners courageously mixed rust from prison bars with their own blood to create an ink and then used a chicken bone as an implement to record the names of 82 fellow prisoners on five scraps of cloth. The first detainee released would smuggle out the cloths and inform families about where loved ones were being held. These five pieces of cloth have been preserved by the Museum’s conservators and are on display in the exhibition.
The screening will be followed by a conversation with the director Maziar Bahari, who survived imprisonment and torture in Iran and is the subject of Jon Stewart’s film Rosewater.
Maziar Bahari, Iranian Canadian journalist and filmmaker
Rafif Jouejati, co-founder and director, FREE-Syria
Tad Stahnke, director of international educational outreach, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
Robert Satloff, executive director, Washington Institute for Near East Policy
The Museum’s special exhibition Syria: Please Don’t Forget Us will remain open until 6:45 p.m. for viewing prior to the evening’s program. Visitors are encouraged to share their reflections using hashtags #ushmm, #syria, and #withsyria.
82 Names: Syria, Please Don’t Forget Us is a co-production of the Museum and Maziar Bahari. The program is free and open to the public but reservations are required at ushmm.org/events/82names.
About the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
A living memorial to the Holocaust, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum inspires citizens and leaders worldwide to confront hatred, prevent genocide, and promote human dignity. Its far-reaching educational programs and global impact are made possible by generous donors. For more information, visit www.ushmm.org.
Content from United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
Originally published at https://www.ushmm.org/information/press/press-releases/museum-hosts-world-premiere-of-82-names-syria-please-dont-forget-us
originally published at HUMAN RIGHTS - USA DAILY NEWS 24