L'insulte (2017) Script

If they ask you who's your President, tell them our President is Bachir Gemayel.

May the Lord be with you.

The Christian Party...

The Christian Party... is like the Bible.

You know, in the Bible, there's the Old Testament, and the New Testament.

In the past, we used to say, only the Christian Party protects Beirut.

Today, what do we say?

The Christian Party supports the State!

You should have seen him today, he was shining bright.

I see him every day, thank God.

I'd like to take the photo down.


I feel like I'm under 24-hour surveillance, Tony.

What if he moved in with us?

Great. Why not?

It gets very hot, 9 months a year.

Do you want the AC on?

I'd like to move out.

We're going to name you Streeda.

I want a bigger, quieter place for the baby.

Shirine, we already talked about this.

We're saving to buy this place.

I work here.

Darling, let's move to Damour.

You have a family house there.

Many people have returned. They're rebuilding.

The church is restored and blessed...

I'm fine here!

Shirine, come have a cup of coffee.

NeXt time. Thank you.

I need a rear shaft for a BMW 325.

How much?


I'll send you Eli.

Eli, it's missing the stamp.

How shall I file this?

I looked everywhere. Only found it in the suburbs.

Total pain in the ass.

Checkpoints everywhere.

Your transmission is worn out. The clutch is slipping.

I just had them replaced.

They can't even get the name right. The S is missing.

It's totally worn out.

Used German is better than brand new Chinese.

I want those guys to finish the job, not sluff off.

Get rid of this cable.

Have them move faster.

Why is it like this?

I want him on the 4th floor. I talked to the neighbors.

- Yasser. Go ahead.

The cement truck is here.

Park it on the street and pour the concrete 8 cm thick.

A car is blocking the street.

Boss! Do you copy?

There's a problem with your gutter. We need to look at it.

What kind of problem?

People are getting sprayed.

Use the other side of the street.

What's going on?

Fucking prick!

Mr. Tony, from what I understand, your drainpipe was sticking out, he was trying to fiX it, but you broke it.

That's my balcony, my house.

City Hall asked us to fix all building violations.

Your drainpipe is illegal. He's only doing his job.

That's no reason to insult me.

Of course not.

He thinks he's a hotshot. He's not!

I'm warning you, he'd better apologize, or I'll sue him and your company.

No need for that, Mr. Tony.

Let me take care of this.

I'll get your drain fiXed.

No one fiXes anything.

We're in their neighborhood.

We can't talk to them like that.

We have to put up with them.

He wants you to apologize.

He's waiting. Do it, then fix his drainpipe.


When will you finish?

In two months. That's why I hired Yasser.

He gets the job done.

He has a tough job.

He's a bit moody.

He gets carried away, but he's harmless.

You know, life has become difficult.

People are angry.

That's why we should put things in perspective.

Tell Mr. Tony that Yasser is sorry.

And he presents his apologies.

Thank you. You shouldn't have.

It's nothing. I hope he likes chocolate.

A boy or a girl?


When is she due?

End of summer.

September 28.

Perfect. The weather will be cooler.

How much steel for this wall? Half a ton.


It's 3 meters thick.

Come in.

Mr. Tony, please wait.

I thought we'd solved this. No, we didn't.

You spoke to my wife. Did you expect she'd finesse me?

I looked for you.

The chocolate wasn't his idea.

It came from all of us. So what?

Don't try to walk all over us!

What do you mean?

I asked for an apology! He should have done it!

Mr. Tony, some people find it difficult to apologize.

It doesn't mean they don't recognize their errors.

Because of their corrupt leadership, the Palestinians have become despised everywhere.

Let them find another land to live in, other than Lebanon.

Let them establish their own state, let them rule themselves, let them scatter in the Arab world.

They may unite with Jordan, they may run to Iran, as long as they don't stay here.

How's work?

Great. Norway donated a generator for the school.

In Norway, if you choose to live 1,000 miles away, the State provides you power, water, internet, gas.

We're a long way from Norway.

It's getting complicated.

He's not willing to let go.

If he files a complaint, I'll have to report it.

I don't want to, and you know why.

What complaint?

What happened?

A misunderstanding with a tenant. Nothing serious.

If the cops intervene, it'll be a problem.

I want to resolve this.

What's going on?

It's about a gutter.

Your husband goes to fix it, the tenant breaks it.

He gets water on your husband, who calls him a fucking prick.

The tenant wants an apology.

Which came first: the gutter or the prick?

That's not the issue right now.

My husband is fair.

Your husband got carried away.

I want to resolve this thing.

I want you to apologize.

You hear me?

Listen, Yasser, we're asked to rebuild the refugee camp up north.

It's two years of work.

Let's not screw this up over a few stupid words.

Because that's what they are, just stupid words.

Tomorrow morning. We go together.

Tomorrow is Sunday.

He's open on Sunday.

He's going out on a limb for you.

What shall I do, bend over?

Show some appreciation.

I'm nobody's servant!

That's selfish.

The world's not plotting against you.

We are targeted.

Who's we? Me, you, all of us.

We're the niggers of the Arab world.

Did your boss plot against you?

Did Norway plot against you?

Norway? Did you meet someone?

You wish.

Well, move to fucking Norway. I'm not stopping you.

If I go, I take you with me.

You insulted a man. Now fix it.

You love your work, you're happy.

Don't let this spoil everything.

In your name, in the name of the people of Tarshish and Antura, the people of Damour, ofAshieh...

Hello, Mr. Tony.

Can you come outside, please?

What for?

There's been a misunderstanding, I'd like us to turn the page.

You keep saying misunderstanding.

So they don't end up like the Palestinian refugee, wandering the world, ruining everything in his path, drinking from our wells then spitting in it...

I'm asking you personally.

He's waiting for you.

Why do we pursue our struggle?

Why do we still need the Lebanese resistance and the Christian Party?

Why do we see casualties every day?

Why are we being forced to put order in the house?

And to put a stop to the abuse?

Because two-thirds of this country are still occupied.

Two-thirds of our villagers are now refugees.

Mr. Tony wants to turn the page.

He wants to hear it from you.

You know what?

You people are lousy bastards.

Otherwise, you would've apologiZed. That explains your bad reputation.

As the Jews say, "Palestinians never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity."

Yasser, what's wrong with you?

You want to get fired?

I'll do it.

I swear.

I wish Ariel Sharon had wiped you all out!

Two broken ribs. What happened?

Someone hit him, about a stupid gutter.

Breathe in.

We're looking for that animal.

When we catch him... Not now, Eli.

Don't lift anything for 8 weeks.

Shall I put you on sick leave?

Keep the ice pack on, and get some rest.

Get well.

A Christian suing a Palestinian?

No lawyer will take this case.

No one would dare.

I don't need a lawyer. I know I'm right.

No, you're not.

You're not right at all.

What you said is unacceptable. That's how wars start.

Dad, are you saying he's right?

I'm saying you're wrong.

He just wanted to fix your gutter, but you humiliated him.

You're blaming me for a gutter?

They fucked up this country, and you blame me for a gutter?

Tell me why can't you go in there?

That's how it is.

We aren't authorized to enter Palestinian camps.

What authority do you have?

It's political.

How do you get him out?

You bait him?

He must be in there hiding.

Then he'll be deemed a fugitive, and an arrest warrant will be issued.

You said you can't arrest him! What a joke!

It's the hideout of every convict.

Please, let me finish.

If it were me, I'd be in jail.

But him, we arrest him by mail.

Because he's Palestinian!

This is bullshit!

You insulted the police.

No, I insulted the situation.

"I wish Ariel Sharon..." What's the problem?

How could you?

To a Palestinian?

You don't understand. I don't?

It's normal for you, but not for me. You think it's a perfect world?

Is it because of the baby?

I don't want her to suffer.

Me neither.

But we're stuck, and you don't want to change.


I'll be gone for a few days.

Continue working as usual.

Close the sewers on Fassouh Street and level out the concrete.

No problem.

How are you, boss?

He asked for it.


Can you feel it?

You think she knows what's going on?

I don't know.

I think she knows everything.

She knows when we're happy, when we're sad, when we're angry.

You think she can hear us?

I think so.

Right, Streeda?

Can I help you?

I'm Yasser Salameh.

I'm turning myself in.

Drop your case.

He gets out of jail and everything will be fine.

You still defend him. Because he's a decent man.

He doesn't deserve this.

He doesn't belong in jail.

We don't solve this thing by pretending we love each other.

That's not how it works.

It could.

I'm no Jesus Christ who'll turn the other cheek.

Case Number 23: Tony Hanna vs Yasser Salameh.

Are you the plaintiff, Tony George Hanna, Lebanese, born October 7, 1970?


You reside in Beirut.


Bring in the accused.

Are you Yasser Abdallah Salameh, born June 16, 1955 in Palestine?


What ID do you have? A laissez-passer.

Where do you reside?

St. Eli Refugee Camp.

You don't want an attorney?


Mr. Tony, you claim that on July 2, Mr. Salameh insulted you.

A week later, at 8:30 AM, he assaulted you at your garage and broke two ribs.


You're suing for physical and moral damages.


How much are you claiming?

What do you mean? What's the amount you want?

The court will say.

You're also asking for "acknowledgment".

Can you explain?

I want him to acknowledge that he erred.

And I... The court decides.

I want him to say he's sorry, hear it out of his mouth.

Why don't you have a lawyer?

Because I'm right.

Just because you say so doesn't mean it's true.

Mr. Yasser, how do you plead?

Guilty, not guilty, guilty with an explanation?


Your Honor, can I talk to Mr. Yasser?

Are you his lawyer?

His employer.

Please sit. He doesn't know the laws.

I said sit down.

Mr. Yasser, by pleading guilty, you consent to the crime.


I was watering my plants as usual, I didn't notice he was under my balcony. Suddenly I heard...

Why didn't you look down to check if anyone was underneath?

Didn't you know your installation was illegal?

Every flat is like that. Answer me.

Did you know it was illegal?

No, I didn't.

When the company informed you that it was, and sent someone to fix it, why did you refuse?

I didn't want workers in our home. My pregnant wife was alone.

Did you have other problems in your home?

A wiring problem two months ago. What did you do?

I called an electrician. It was the fuse box.

Is the fuse box in your apartment?


So the electrician went inside your apartment.


When he came in, was your wife alone?

Yes, but we...

Thank you, Mr. Tony.

Mr. Yasser, you've been renovating buildings there for five weeks now.


How do residents treat you? Well.

You know that in this town, every area has its own sensibilities, political, religious.

Have you taken this into account?

Yes. How?

I asked my workers to pray in a car park, to offend no one.

The fight with Mr. Tony is the first one you've had.


So why after five weeks of friendly relations, did you call Mr. Hanna a "fucking prick"?

He spilled dirty water on me.

He says it was an accident. How do you answer to this?

I've done nothing wrong eXcept do my job.

Why didn't you apologize?

He gave you ample time to do it.

I didn't feel I owed him an apology.

So on July 9, you go to his garage and punch him.

This is premeditated assault.

I was going to apologize.

What changed your mind?

Please answer, what stopped you?

I already said I was guilty.

I need to know what pushed you to hit him.

The report doesn't say why.

He said things.

Like what?

You're doing yourself no favor by remaining silent.

The allegations against you are serious.

What pushed him to hit you?

He was asked first.

I'm addressing you now.

If my words were bad, then let him repeat them.

What did you say?

He had no right to hit me.

You must have said something that pushed him.

If you won't say it, you admit he didn't deserve it.

I don't believe it all started over a gutter.

This is the last time I will ask.

Mr. Tony.

Mr. Yasser.

Very well.

This court finds all the evidence presented is inconclusive.

Inconclusive? What about my injuries?

Do not interrupt me.

You can't lump us together.

Don't tell me what I can't do!

Nothing justifies physical assault!

Says who?

Article 554 of the penal code:

"Aggravated assault is defined by serious bodily injury..."

I know what the law says.

"... and carries a sentence of 6 months and a fine of up to 50,000 pounds."

Mr. Tony, please.

"In case it leads to illness... Mr. Tony!

You've crossed the line. This is the law.

You broke the law by having an illegal pipe and breaking it after he fixed it.

Case dismissed!

Not fair, Your Honor! You may go, Mr. Yasser.

You're biased. You're acquitting a criminal.

Leave the courtroom.

Not before I get a fair trial.

Get out or I'll have you arrested.

For what?

Get him out!

You're a corrupt judge and a fraud.

I will sue you.

You're hurting him!

I'll have you barred from this court and from every other court!

It pays to be Palestinian!

It pays to be Palestinian!

You weren't expecting it.

Since neither of you told the judge the whole truth.

The truth is I hit someone because of an insult.

If it were that simple, you'd still be in jail.

The judge was biased. It's just that it was in my favor.

No, he understood it was about more than a gutter.

How could you say that to the judge?

He was a biased judge.

Appeal, but don't insult judges.

They're all in cahoots.

The Palestinian was gloating the whole time.

I didn't see that.

You were sitting in the back.

He didn't tell the judge what you said!

Because he had the verdict in the pocket.

People who get humiliated end up hating themselves.

What are you saying?

Tomorrow we get into an argument, I beat the shit out of you, I smash your brain, but it's OK since I hate myself?

I dare you. Manner of speaking.

Never talk to me like this! I don't care how bad you feel.

Manner of speaking!

Boss, screw the courts.

They bribed him. Bunch of pricks!

There's a witch-hunt against Christians.

You weren't even born yet. So shut up.

Take photos of this place from different angles.

Send them to the Mayor in a golden frame.

For the press, "Ibrahim Nassar Construction Company

"serves this community

"by removing violations and improving infrastructures, etc."

Yes, Mr. Deputy.

Good work, Talal. It's looking fine.

Thank you.

But, why are we using Italian paint?

The local brand peels off when it rains.

The Italian has a 10-year warranty.

Mix it.

It will void the warranty, sir.

Who is he?

The foreman.


I know, it's illegal.

You know where I stand on this issue.

I'm with their cause. I share their grief.

I know.

But not at the firm's expenses.

Court date is set for August 3.

Judge Colette Mansur will preside.

I hope the court's AC is working.

The doctor is preparing his report on the Hannas and their daughter.

He'll have to state... No, "to prove".

To prove that their complications are the consequence...

No, the "direct consequence" of the assault.

Choose your words carefully, this is the appeal phase.

Mr. Tony Hanna is here.


We heard about your day in court.

What you told the judge was ballsy. I got carried away.

How could you not? An injustice was committed.

But do me a favor, never go to court without a lawyer.

I didn't want to sue, counselor.

All I wanted was an apology.

And he refused.

You gave him ample time to apologize, and he beat you up.

That's unacceptable.

He beat up a Lebanese citizen. We cannot accept that.

He pleaded guilty.

To get an acquittal. Those people are sneaky, deceitful.

They know how to turn the tables round.

Aggressors paint themselves as victims, and you know who they learn it from.

I did certain things that I shouldn't have.

I poured water on him.

I went to my garage, I carried heavy things...

Mr. Tony, you came to me, right?


So please, let's focus on that.

I want a fair trial, counselor.

I don't want to win by sympathy.

Do you think Wajdy Webb wins cases by sympathy?


We're suing for pain and suffering, yours, your wife's, and your daughter's.

We'll ask for $80,000 in damages and $40,000 for moral damages.

I don't care about money.

What do you care about?

When we're done with him, I want him to say I'm 100 times worse than Ariel Sharon.

Let me ask you a question, why did you say, "I wish Ariel Sharon had wiped you all out?"

What's the big deal?

If the judge asks you, how will you answer?

It felt right to say it.

That's not a good argument. Those words are loaded, Mr. Tony.

What you said is very compleX.

I don't understand.

The Palestinian cause is a whole different ball game.

There's the UN, the NGOs, the humanitarian organizations...

Everyone roots for the Palestinians.

And don't forget, there are those who hate us.

The Left, the liberals.

By the way, many are Christians.

They'd all be willing to skydive just to defend Yasser Salameh.

It's trendy to defend those people.

So even if your opponent wants to settle out of court, they may force him not to.

My daughter is on life support, She can't breathe on her own. We don't know if she'll make it.

My wife is also...

I want you to think carefully about what you said.

That's what they'll focus on in court, not who spilled water, who beat whom, or who's the fucking prick, but why you said, "I wish Ariel Sharon had wiped you all out."

Mr. Yasser, what I'd like to know is why you didn't tell the judge what your opponent said?

My husband isn't a snitch.

No one will judge your integrity in a court.

I called him a fucking prick.

You can't compare prick with Sharon wiping you all out.

He said, "I wish".

What's the difference?

He could have said: wiped you out, beat you up, or loved you.

They're just words.

So why were you upset?

Those words change everything.

They insult your nationality and identity.

It could be considered a hate crime.

Everyone hates and insults everybody.

Insulting someone's identity is punishable by law.

It means you can sue him.

But I hit him.

Because of what he said.

Plus, he asked you to apologize. You went to do that.

He's got a problem with me.

According to Article 228 of the penal code, even if a perpetrator exceeds the bounds of self-defense, he may be acquitted if he acted in extreme distress that hampered his judgment and self-control.

Forget my distress.

His child is fighting for her life.

That's why you need a lawyer.

I can't afford you.

Your opponent is appealing for his and his wife's health complications.

If his baby dies, that's involuntary manslaughter.

We're looking at ten years.

You can manage this situation or let it manage you.

Either way, you have little time. Please think about it.

Why are you doing this?

Because you people are often deprived of your rights.

Not now.

I'm sorry for everything.

Enough of your bullshit.

We were fine until you barged into our neighborhood.

I understand. You understand nothing!

We want to cover your hospital bills, and do repairs to your home, anything we can help...

And how will that save my daughter?


You think you can buy us with flowers and a boX of chocolate?

Of course not.

Tell your fucking deputy we're not for sale.

I want those people out of my life.

Wajdy Webb has the case. We'll win.

I don't care who wins.

You let a stupid incident take hold of you.

I won't drop the case. Never.

You go to court, you win, the guy gets life. Then what?

That's a lot already. And your baby?

What about her? Did you ask her what she wants?

It's for her.

I'm doing this for you, for the family.

You're doing it for yourself!

You'll burn everything but not turn the page!

You know what? I hope you get what you want.

American University of Cairo.

Master's degree in civil engineering.

Worked for Bechtel in Kuwait and in Dubai.

Moved to Beirut in 1982.

Met his Lebanese wife there.

A Christian.

I'm not surprised.

Sir, this is the motion filed by the defense.

Traumatic pneumothorax occurs when the pleural cavity surrounding the lungs is punctured.

It was literally skewered by the fractured rib, resulting in acute pain, labored breathing, and a raised heart rate.

Dr. Badran, is it serious?

The pressure on a lung can damage it and displace other organs.

Can you describe what Mrs. Hanna went through?

She was hospitalized for a preterm delivery by caesarian section.

If she hadn't arrive in time, she might have lost the baby.

What caused this?

It was the...

It was the direct result of the emotional shock from seeing her husband unconscious.

Can an emotional shock lead to a miscarriage?


Plus she had contractions when she pulled her husband to her car.

Thank you, Doctor.

Dr. Khawam, had Mr. Tony followed his doctor's advice, could the traumatic pneumothorax have occurred?


So he brought it upon himself.

Objection, Your Honor.

Mr. Tony, did you follow your doctor's advice to get rest?

I had to go to work. I have bills to pay.

We're not contesting this.

Can you describe the movements you made?

I lifted a heavy battery. It hurt, then I fell.

Can those movements provoke a traumatic pneumothorax?

No doubt.

Remember: the defendant's blow caused the fracture.

But not the ensuing complications.

No fracture, no complications!

He'd have had none had he obeyed his doctor.


Please let her finish.

Mr. Tony claims the premature delivery was due to the shock of seeing her husband, and the contractions were due to pulling her husband to the car.

These are the hospital's records.

They belong to Mrs. Hanna. They date back to 2013 and 2014.

Please look at them.

As you can see, Mrs. Hanna had two miscarriages, on the 3rd and the 5th months.

Dr. Khawam, can a woman with a history of miscarriages be prone to a premature birth with no outside factors?


No further questions.

Did you have to? It's scientific evidence.

That's not right.

You're accused of a crime you didn't commit.

We're prying into private lives.

We're exposing them in public. It's not right!

What is right? They do it to us, we do it to them.

I don't want this!

As an engineer, he was very eXperienced.

But since he's Palestinian, he's not allowed to practice here.

So I hired him as a foreman.

In charge of how many workers?

60 to 75.

How would you describe Mr. Yasser's work?

He was thorough.

He always finished on time.

We called him the rooster, because he always showed up early and went home after the last prayer call.

So the company was happy with his work.


How long was he supposed to work for you?

18 months. How long did he last?

6 weeks.

6 weeks?

What happened?

One day, he cut some cables that were left on the street.

Another time, I showed up, and found a crane, a Liebherr.

He ordered it without asking.

It cost us $800 per day, because he didn't want to use the other crane.

One day, he exploded like a time bomb.

He grabbed a sledgehammer and tore down the fa├žade.

What's new?

A guy from the Christian Party is suing a Palestinian.

He was not only embarrassing but also dangerous.

So finally I said that was it, and I fired him.

Did he show any remorse?

Ask him.

So basically, you hire Mr. Yasser, you help him out, and then he betrays you.


I was very hurt.

He was ungrateful.


I took a risk when I hired him.

You know, when you hire a Palestinian, you get accused of trying to settle half a million Palestinians here, and you know what that means.

No, can you explain?

You give Palestinians jobs here, they won't return to Palestine.

The Israelis are happy, which makes you a traitor.

Thank you.

No further questions.

Counselor Nadine, your turn.

Mr. Salah, you mentioned a pillar that shifted, which turned Mr. Yasser into a "time bomb".

What would have happened if he hadn't spotted it?

It could have collapsed, causing injuries.


You also said that he rented this thing that cost $800.

What's it called again? Liebherr.

What's a Liebherr?

A big German crane. Is it a good crane?

It's German.

Why didn't he use the other crane?

It's Chinese.

He claims everything made in China is crap.

You had about 75 foreign workers.


Normally, foreign workers get no social security, no health insurance, no work benefits, etc.

No company gives that.

How come your workers got all that?

He came up with a plan where the workers would recycle scrap metal, then sell it back to the company.

In exchange, they got insurance coverage.

In the end, your company...

So because of his love of perfection and compassion, aggression is justified?

Mr. Yasser is not aggressive by nature.


Are we debating nature here?

So why are we debating in a courthouse?

We should be lying down on a couch in front of a therapist.

It pays better.

What's neXt? I shoot you with a gun, I open your chest, I smash your brain on the sidewalk, I stab Marcelino Zamata siX times, but my nature is good.

Order in the court!

Your Honor, when Mr. Yasser is given a task, he does it seriously and responsibly, from start to finish, just like when he fixed Mr. Tony's gutter...

Mr. Tony Hanna is a law-abiding citizen, but deserves to get beaten up because Mr. Yasser is serious and responsible!

Counselor, let your daughter finish!

Why didn't you say she's your daughter?

It makes no difference.

Of course it does.

She knows your methods, your tricks. She learned from you.


You think law is a trick?

Father against daughter. A bit strange!

Mr. Tony, your cellphone.

It's called conflict of interest. I don't buy it.

I do.

Get off the case.

Everything's a battlefield for you. Not for me. I didn't grow up in the war.

My life is not like yours. I'm not you.

Your mother would have been heartbroken.

I won't drop the case. See you in court.

You're just a corporate lawyer.

I'd hate to see you lose your first case to me.

Who said you'll win?

For the sake of your children, so they don't end up living like the Palestinian refugee, and behaving like the Palestinian refugee, wandering the world, ruining everything in his path, drinking from our wells then spitting in them...

That morning, Mr. Yasser went to Mr. Tony to apologize.

Once he heard that speech, he changed his mind.

I find it patriotic.

For a Palestinian, it's offensive.


We often hear: "the road to Palestine runs through Beirut".

My client didn't say this phrase.

Neither did my client!

We hear speeches all the time.

Incendiary speeches, subversive speeches, sexist speeches, I hear speeches looking at myself in the mirror.

I can attest to that. Let's stay in court, counselors.

I'd like to say...

Your Honor, we live in the Middle East.

The word "offensive" was born here.

It's not up to Mr. Tony to consider people's sensibilities.

That's their problem, not his.

Can you please allow the defense to finish?

I wish to reveal the words that pushed Mr. Yasser to hit Mr. Tony.

Go ahead.

The words are:

"I wish Ariel Sharon had wiped you all out."

Yes! He should have!

Take that back!

That's disgraceful!

Order in the court!

Mr. Tony, did you know these words violated Mr. Yasser's dignity and identity, and are a hate crime?

Hate crime? For a humiliation?

Which humiliation is this?

The one in 1948? 1956? The Six-Day War?

The Yom Kippur War? The 1982 War?

They're all humiliations.

My client can't be blamed for those mishaps.

The Palestinian tragedy is not a mishap.

It was not a mishap, it was a catastrophe!

Approach the bench.

Get a hold of yourself!


You're right, I got carried away.

I know you, Wajdy. I won't wear a bulletproof vest.

I'm warning you.

Today at the courthouse, members of the Christian Party clashed with Palestinian refugees.

Which TV?

New TV. We'd like to have you on our show.

We can send a driver.

I'm at the hospital.

We can come to you.

Let me think about it.


Your lawyer is pretentious. It's ridiculous.

He's putting up a good fight.

You don't like it because you live in denial.

You're just his puppet.

He lets nothing slide without contesting it.


Why did he say the Palestinians were a catastrophe?

He got carried away.

I don't get it.

A famous lawyer, who defended the party's leader, decides to take on a trifling case? For free?

For you, it's a trifle. For me, it's everything.

How so? It's about the truth.

Which truth?

You provoked and insulted this man. You hurt yourself working.


I was publicly humiliated because of both of you!

Quiet! You're upsetting her.

She can't hear us, she's just moving.


In your womb, she heard everything but now nothing?

Mr. Tony?

I work for a security firm.

If you need protection, we're ready.

Courthouse Invasion - Webb wants Palestinians Thrown into the Sea

Don't answer any questions or any provocations.

Walk straight inside.

Is this a smear campaign?

No, it's a tribute to Wajdy Webb's career.

Your daughter is your opponent. Wajdy Webb encourages dissent.

Why do you always speak in the third person?

It sounds better.

Why are you suing a Palestinian while Gaza is being bombed?

Why are you here and not in Gaza?

Are you doing this because you lost the party leader's case?

Thank you for coming to Beirut, Mr. Ghandour.

I know it's hard for you to travel.

You came from Amman? Yes.

That's where you live? Yes.

This man was full of vigor and health.

Until the day everything changed.

He's been confined to a wheelchair for 45 years.

It happened in Jordan, July 1971.

After months of heavy fighting, the Jordanian army dismantles the PLO in the Palestinian camps.

What was your role in that operation?

I was the cook.

Did you see any combat?

No, I just fed the troops.

Can you tell us what happened?

At the end of the Civil War, after the PLO was expelled, the Palestinian refugees were in misery.

We set up tents to serve them meals.

Every day.

One day, the line was very long, endless.

The mood was very tense.

A woman came forward for her meal.

While I was serving food, one of her children stole a piece of bread.

I asked him to give it back, he refused.

I tried to take it by force, he started screaming.

Next thing I remember, a young man lunged at me and started hitting me.

I tried to defend myself, but he was full of rage.

He hit me savagely.

He even struck me with a metal pot.

I lost consciousness.

When I woke up, I couldn't move.

A cerebral hematoma due to cranial trauma.

What happened to that man?

He must have crossed the border.

When the PLO guerillas fled, the Jordanian army looked the other way.

We wanted nothing more than to see them go.

Do you recognize this man?

Mr. Mohamed, can you tell us who this person is?

A life crushed by the brutality of the accused.

What Yasser Salameh inflicted on this man shows his deeper nature, and proves that he has a history of violence.

Violence is his sole means of functioning in society.

That's unacceptable.

This man is dangerous!

And if he walks free today, it's because history was on his side.

The political context prevented him from being brought to justice.

And now we're being asked to absolve him again, for the same political context: the holy Palestinian cause!

Lock him up!


Stick to the case, counselor.

True, he didn't paralyze Tony Hanna, but he came close.

And at this very moment, a newborn's life hangs in the balance.

No further questions.

Yours, Counsel.

Mr. Mohamed, what you call the Jordanian Civil War is known as Black September, right?

It was a civil war. Many Palestinians live in Jordan.

History remembers it as Black September.

The Jordanian army hit Palestinian refugees, killing more than 3,000, mainly civilians, and based on recognized criteria, this is a massacre.

The militias were hiding among civilians.

We had no choice.

Then, your army decided to eradicate the PLO at any price.

They tried to assassinate King Hussein.

They were a state within a state, they launched cross-border attacks.

They endangered the whole country.

When you kicked them out, they came here.

Order, or I'll throw you out!

Mr. Mohamed, you say you were a cook.


But you were in the army.


Did you wear a uniform?


Yasser Salameh had no reason to believe you weren't a soldier.

I was serving them food.

The Jordanian Army attacks a refugee camp, indiscriminately kills civilians and militants, then decides to feed those who survived.

The oppressor humiliates the oppressed with his generosity.

In this conteXt, Salameh saw a soldier take a piece of bread from a child, his blood boils, he attacks the soldier.

My client isn't the bloodthirsty man you describe. No!

Yasser Salameh can't just stand there while injustice happens.

The proof is he refused to repeat Tony Hanna's words, though it would have been in his interest.

He didn't do it because those words are humiliating.

Tony Hanna's words made my client act in extreme distress and pushed him to lash out.

Penal code, Article 228: even if a perpetrator exceeds the bounds of self-defense, he may be acquitted if he acted in extreme distress that hampered his judgment and self-control.

Fucking prick.

The workers agreed to work overtime.

You can inform the deputy.

It's for you.

What is it?

Open it.


The deputy called me.

He doesn't want to risk it.

I tried to convince him.

He doesn't want you here.

Mr. Yasser, are you a politician? No.

A member of a party? No.

Any organization? No.

Have you been solicited or asked to speak on anyone's behalf?


Has the PLO, or Hamas, or any party asked you to represent them now or in the past?


So you don't represent anyone. No.

Where were you when you hit Tony Hanna?

In front of his garage.

Who was present? My boss.

Who else?

No one.

Any bystanders?

I don't recall.

Did he have a bullhorn?

Did Tony Hanna use a bullhorn to say, "I wish Ariel Sharon had wiped you all out"?


Did he spray graffiti, call the press?


So when he said those words, it was in private.


Therefore, no publishing.

No libel, no crime.

All my client did was express a "wish".

He said, "I wish".

Is a wish a crime?

What's neXt? My thoughts? My dreams?

If I dreamed I killed you, am I guilty?

Where do we stop?

We are not judging thoughts and dreams, but words.

All he said was, "I wish Sharon had wiped you all out."

Are his words going to push Ariel Sharon to wipe the Palestinians out?

Sharon doesn't need Tony Hanna's permission.

The words of my client were spoken in anger in a dispute.

Were they harsh? Yes. But that's it.

He was exercising his right of freedom of speech.

Mr. Yasser, if his words offended you, go to court!

That's where justice is served.

When denied rights, people lose faith in justice.

Why is Tony Hanna responsible?

Blame those who are responsible.

Who's the aggressor here?

You, Mr. Yasser.

The moment you laid your hands on my client, you committed a crime, you went too far.

The defense points to the Palestinians' despair, as if they were the world's only oppressed people.

And the Armenians?

The Kurds, the gays, the gypsies, artists, street vendors?

Who isn't deprived of rights? I don't see them beat each other up.

Mr. Yasser, just because you're a refugee, a victim with no country, that gives you no excuse to be violent.

Even if you are the most oppressed person, it doesn't make you the spokesman of morality and justice!

And why all the fuss?

Because Palestinians get wiped out?

Because Mr. Tony said these words?


The reason is Sharon.

If Tony Hanna had said, I wish the Eskimos, or the Smurfs, had wiped you all out, we wouldn't be here debating!

Eskimos and Smurfs are not the point.

The counselor is sidetracking us.


When a Jew does it, it's a crime, but when an Arab kills an Arab, it's OK.

As long as we keep it in the family, right?

The Jews did worse! So say you!

You right-wing scum! Don't talk about Palestinians!

You're a traitor!

Oh, sure! Only Christians committed atrocities!

You collaborated with the Jews.

With the devil too! No apologies! We were the resistance.

Don't mention the resistance, you dirty dog!

Counselor, please!

Dad, be careful.

None of your business! Go defend him.

The first resistance was us.

Way before you.

Zionist dog!

This lawyer is filthy, a Zionist, his client is a Zionist...

The prick deserves to be shot.

Let those assholes know if they come here, this isn't Mossul, this is Fassouh!

Do we know who was filming inside?

We don't know how cameras entered the courtroom.

We'll tighten security.

Why bring the Jews into this?

These were your words, not mine.

I'm being called an Israeli sympathizer.

You started the whole thing.

You should defend me. - What did you expect?

A walk in the park?

This is war. Waged in court.

I asked you, are you up to the task? You said yes.

I didn't want it to be political.

You came to me, no?

When I asked what you wanted, what did you say?

"When we're done with him, "I want him to say I'm 100 times worse than Sharon."

If you can't handle it, I'll drop the case.

Son of a bitch!

Are you OK? Yes, you?


We know where you live.

Who is this?

Who is it?

You don't scare me. Don't call here.

Do you hear me?


Fassouh Police.

I'm being threatened. Could you trace this number?

We can't do that.

You're the police.

Try the Attorney General's office.

They're threatening my family.

Come to the station and fill out a report.

What are you doing? Nothing.

Turn the light off.

Stay here. Don't leave.


Boss, it's me Eli.

What's wrong? The garage.

It just happened.

We heard two bikes.


They're provoking us.

The police don't care.

That's him!

Mr. Deputy! Sir?

This poor man delivers pizza to feed his family.

Some hotshot lawyer thinks anyone who rides a moped is pro-Palestinian, and so deserves to be run over.

Are you accusing Tony Hanna of being pro-Israel?

He serves their interests. Same thing.

I call on anyone who supports the Palestinian cause to stand with Yasser Salameh.

I'm told you're both decent people, love your families, work hard.

I work hard too: squabbling deputies, water shortages, power outages, trash collection, two million refugees, terrorists sneaking in.

Where is this country headed?

I've asked you to come here to put an end to all this.

That's why we're in court, Mr. President.

How about we resolve this out of court?

You know, lawyers like to drag things out, to show off.

They have huge egos.

They don't care about you.

They're working hard.

But they're not helping you reconcile.

You must set aside your differences, for your country's sake.

Which one, Mr. President?

They hate this country.

We live in the same country. We're brothers.

No, we're not.

I want you to turn the page, here and now, and everyone goes home happy.

You can ask, but we can't.

Sure you can.

It wouldn't be sincere.

Between sincerity and stability, I'd choose stability.

I could end the trial.

You can't do that.

I'm the President.

You're a state employee, sir.

We pay taxes for you to protect our rights, even our right to go to court.

What he's trying to tell you...

I don't care!

I went to his boss, to the police, then to court, all I wanted was an apology, but no one would hear me out.

I feel you're siding with them too.

Why? Why does everyone take their side?

I'm not taking sides.

Are they better than us?

I want to salvage the ship.

We get punished, and they get impunity.

Why? Are they God's chosen people?

Do you want to start a war?

Get in.

Go ahead.

Mr. Geagea, let's get to the point.

Tony Hanna said:

"I wish Ariel Sharon had wiped you all out."

What do you think?

We're not the Third Reich telling our members, what they can or can't say.

Do Mr. Hanna's words reflect your party's position?

Yes or no?

We've settled up with the Palestinians.

But look at the riots!

The war ended in 1990, but in people's heads, it's still there.


We never had a national reconciliation.

Where's this reconciliation, how can it happen, when the warlords and religious figures are still in power, including yourself?

I offered a public apology for mistakes we committed in the war.

Many still think your party was the most violent one, and committed the most abuses during the war.

Mr. Walid, when you lose the war, you become history's scapegoat.

I'd like to say something to Tony Hanna:

I know you're watching.

Don't think I don't understand your pain.

I know what happened to you.

We can't change the past.

We can remember it, but we can't live in it and let it control us.

And then?

The war is over.

If Bashir Gemayel were still alive, he would tell us the same thing, it's time to turn the page.

Did your party ask Wajdy Webb to defend Tony Hanna?

Not at all.

But he defended you in the past?

It doesn't mean he works for us.

Tony Hanna is registered in Beirut, District 135.

But the records show he was born in District 112.

The change of registry was in 1976.

He was 6 years old.

Birthplace: Damour.

Why didn't he mention it?

We didn't ask.

Or he didn't want to.

Tony Hanna didn't want to tell us.

Take a look at these.

Mr. Tony, have you ever belonged to a militia?


Ever used a weapon? Even a hunting rifle?

I never shot anyone.

Have you ever attended a political rally?

Every rally of our party's leader.

Did you ever fight in the war?


I wish I had.

I was too young.

What if war starts? We are at war.

I mean a real war.

I don't know. Maybe.

Do you have something against Palestinians?

"I wish Ariel Sharon had wiped you all out."

Very insulting.

Curse his mother, his sister, his honor,

our vocabulary is rich with insults.

Why choose those words?

I'm impressed.

You're good with words.

You should join my law firm.

As the defense said, you went too far.

From their first contact, Tony Hanna knew that Yasser Salameh was Palestinian.

You knew it from the start? Yes.


From his accent. From his accent.

Any person in his right mind, wouldn't say what you said to your opponent.

And if he assaulted you, it's because, and I quote the defense: your words put him "in extreme distress".

Mr. Tony, where do you come from?

Please tell us which village you come from?


Were you born there? Yes.

And your parents?

Yes. What did your father do?

He grew bananas.

Damour is famous for its bananas. Still considered the best.

How would you describe your life back then?

Normal. Like how?


Like in every village? Simple, calm, peaceful?


A mainly Christian population?


When was the last time you went?

A while ago. How long?

A while ago.

Ten, twenty, thirty years? Roughly.

Damour is only a 20-minute drive.

Stop asking.

I don't need to go.

Don't need to, don't want to, or can't?

How old are you now?


In 1976, you were 6 years old.


Do you remember the night of January 21, 1976?

Mr. Tony?

May we talk in private?

Not now.

You don't have the right to... Not now!

Your Honors, I have some footage that I'd like to show, if I may.

What sort of footage?

Footage shot in Damour between January 9 and 21, 1976.

That's irrelevant to this trial.

The defense claims Tony's words were driven by hate.

I want to prove that it's true.

The film will stir up emotions. It's irrelevant.

You made us listen to Bashir Gemayel, it also stirred emotions.

Can you describe them to us?

To better understand, it must be seen.

They used to call it "The Bride of the Sea".

It was a beautiful village.

Pristine beaches, vast banana fields.

Life in this village was calm, simple, peaceful.

All that changed on January 9, 1976.

Trucks loaded with fighters, with artillery and rocket launchers rolled into Damour.

They numbered around 4,000 to 5,000 fighters.

Young men from the village, in various Christian militias, fought to protect the city.

Most inhabitants, around 15,000, hid in the village of Sadiyat.

The Lebanese army could only send a few helicopters to evacuate them.

Families got separated.

Some stayed in Sadiyat, others were evacuated to the north.

Those who couldn't reach Sadiyat took to the sea, or fled along the train tracks.

Those who couldn't escape hid in churches, like Saint Eli Church.

Militiamen surrounded the village and launched the final assault.

On January 21, after 12 days of fighting, Damour fell.

They entered the village, arrested many young men, gathered them in the village square, lined them up, and executed them.

They combed every street, every house.

The first victims were Samy Rizk's family.

The whole family was killed.

The orders were to spare no one.

Entire families were killed.

The Abu Merhis, the Metnis, the Eids, the Abdallahs, the Kanaan family.

Children, mothers, fathers, grandfathers.

There are conflicting claims as to which militias carried out the massacre, but what's certain is that it was carried out by the Lebanese Left Wing Movement and Palestinian factions, such as "Sayqa", and the Yarmuk army.

The images you're seeing are the only ones that eXist.

Most were taken by the militiamen as a souvenir of their heroism.

More than 500 were killed, 22,000 refugees.

It happened over a few days, quickly, and then, the freeway to Damour was reopened, as if a truck had flipped or a dog had been run over.

I know what you're thinking.

What we just saw, we've become inured to it.

It doesn't affect us anymore.

You may be right.

But can you say this to the victims?

Or their families?

Tony Hanna's lived about 500 meters from the main square.

George Hanna didn't have many options.

Either hide them in the church, or...


Counselor, what happened?

What did we expect?

The footage put him in "extreme distress".

How many ribs did I break?


I just patted you.

You know what's your problem?

You talk too much.

You drove everyone crazy, lit this place on fire, because you talk too much.

You just can't keep your fucking mouth shut.


your little show in court today was pretty pathetic.

What did you want to prove?

That you're the victim?

Victim my ass!

Everyone knows who Lebanon's Christians are.

You talked about defending your country while you lived in your fancy beach villas.

You played the tourists during the war.

Shopping in Paris, skiing in Switzerland.

You eat sushi.

You speak French.

Half the bombs that fell on you didn't have detonators.

You don't know what suffering is.

What a bunch of cry babies!

I'm sorry.


Forty years ago, a massacre took place in Damour.

A heinous massacre.

Thousands of families had to flee.

Mr. Tony Hanna was among the lucky survivors.

What happened back then remains buried.

The perpetrators unpunished.

No justice. No closure. Nothing.

We can understand why Tony Hanna said those words to Yasser Salameh.

He wanted revenge.

For Tony, Yasser is guilty, guilty by association.

We've all been through hard times.

We let our emotions get the better of us, like Tony Hanna and Yasser Salameh.

Yasser Salameh also reacted to words that targeted his identity, his history, his people's history.

When one goes too far, and those words did, one must expect a reaction.

It's normal.

It's inevitable.

It's human nature.

Counselor Wajdy.

There was an article this morning about a US senator who insulted a flight attendant.

She asks him to turn his cellphone off. So he calls her a bitch.

The White House reacted.

Finally, the senator issued a public apology.

I wonder if this could happen in this country.

If it's ever possible to settle a dispute in a respectful manner, and consider an apology is not a sign of weakness, but a sign of decency.

That's all Mr. Hanna wanted.

An apology.

Plain and simple.

The defense maintains that Tony Hanna's words targeted Mr. Salameh's identity, his history, and his people's history.

So he hit him.

If Yasser Salameh is a refugee, so is Tony Hanna.

Even more, a refugee in his own country.

His life has been marred by the same suffering, tragedy, and injustice.

The only difference is we've never showed Tony and many others the compassion they deserve.

On the contrary, we've silenced them, ostracized them, while we know all too well what happened to the Palestinians.

We talk so much about your cause, there's no room left for anyone else.

What happened in 1976 in Damour, Jiye, Sadiyat, and Nahme, we're not allowed to talk about it.

But what Tony Hanna said to Yasser Salameh, it's allowed.

The truth is they're the product of an old wound that has never healed.

What's happening in this court is a beginning to consider and accept the other.

Something must be said, something relevant, fundamental.

No one has a monopoly on suffering, Your Honors.

No one.

All eyes are on the Court ofAppeals. The verdict is imminent.

From north to south, the army is on high alert...

The verdict in the Hanna vs Salameh case...

A reminder of the tough last two months the country has been through...

Judge Colette Mansur allowed the public to view the proceedings.

Will the verdict change Palestinians' situation in Lebanon?

Could this trial set a precedent by examining old Civil War wounds?

Will either side accept or appeal the decision to the Supreme Court?

Will this verdict spark more rioting in the streets?

This case now closes after having profoundly rattled Lebanon.

It has fueled waves of violence and brought back memories of the Civil War.

Judge Colette Mansur presiding.

All rise!

Plaintiff and defendant, please rise.

This seems like a cut-and-dry case, but in reality it's not.

This is a case that involves two people who each claim to be the victim.

Words were uttered, and an assault was committed.

You each believe you were in the right.

The issue is which of you is at fault, or more at fault.

Do the words outweigh the physical aggression, or are they equally incriminating?

Basically, a physical assault is unacceptable.

You can't take the law into your own hands, eXcept for clear and imminent danger, meaning self-defense.

At the same time, does an insult carry the same weight as physical assault, when the insult is demeaning and hurtful?

At one point, we were tempted to find you both guilty.

But based on the evidence submitted by both lawyers, we had to go back to how it all started.

By virtue of majority vote, two for, and one against, this court finds Yasser Salameh not guilty.