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Panama Deception | Coverup | Destination Nicaragua | Raw Footage

Order <i>The Panama Deception</i>1993 Academy Award, Best Documentary Feature. Read the Acceptance Speech by Barbara Trent.

A riveting Academy Award-winning critique of the government's history of militarization, made all the more timely by the current war on terrorism.

The Panama Deception documents the untold story of the December 1989 U.S. invasion of Panama; the events which led to it; the excessive force used; the enormity of the death and destruction; and the devastating aftermath. The Panama Deception uncovers the real reasons for this internationally condemned attack, presenting a view of the invasion which widely differs from that portrayed by the U.S. media and exposes how the U.S. government and the mainstream media suppressed information about this foreign policy disaster.

The Panama Deception includes never before seen footage of the invasion and its aftermath, as well asinterviews with both invasion proponents like Gen. Maxwell Thurman, Panamanian President Endara andPentagon spokesperson Pete Williams, and opponents like U.S. Representative Charles Rangel (D-NY.), Panamanian human rights workers Olga Mejia and Isabel Corro and former Panamanian diplomat Humberto Brown. Network news clips and media critics contribute to a staggering analysis of media control and selfcensorship relevant to any news coverage today, particularly during times of war.

Among the film's excellent reviews are: "meticulously researched" (Hal Hinson, Washington Post);"outstanding" (Betsy Sherman, Boston Globe); "tough....provocative....moving....beautifully edited" (Vincent Canby, New York Times); and "lays out simply and forcefully the case against the 'official' version" (Peter Rainer, Los Angeles Times).

The Empowerment Project (EP) worked on this production for two years. EP first came to prominence in 1988 with the release of the equally acclaimed Coverup: Behind the Iran Contra Affair. EP is a non-profit media resource center committed to democratizing the media. Each year, hundreds of independent filmmakers use EP's edit facilities and other services. EP has recently moved its offices out of New York and California. The new headquarters for all operations is now in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Since its August 1992 release, The Panama Deception has played in 80 cities, including an eight-week runin Seattle and a five-week holdover in New York City. The film appeared in video stores in August 1993. It was cablecast on Cinemax in the United States during October of that same year and currently, Bravo-the IndependentFilm Channel retains the rights to cablecast the film. Many local affiliates of PBS have broadcast the film butnational PBS, however, has refused to broadcast the film despite the Congressional mandate explicitly requiringthat both sides of controversial issues be included in PBS's overall programming. Internationally, the film has been broadcast in Australia, Canada, Poland, Hong Kong, France, Spain, Portugal, the U.K., Iran, Israel, Finland,Switzerland, Mexico, Argentina, Japan, Norway, the People's Republic of China, S. Korea, Italy, Turkey, Russia,S. Africa, the Netherlands, the Philippines, Algeria, Malaysia, and Czechoslovakia. A ban on the film originally imposed by the Panamanian government was lifted in March 1993, following strong internal and international pressure.

Funding for The Panama Deception has been provided, in part, by: Channel Four in London, Rhino Home Video,the I. Roderick MacArthur Foundation, the Rex Foundation, the Peace Development Fund, the National Councilof Churches, the CarEth Foundation, the Vietnam Veterans of America Foundation, the Funding Exchange/PaulRobeson Fund for Film and Video, The Charles Lawrence Keith and Clara Miller Foundation, EssentialInformation, the Vanguard Public Foundation, Lucille Banta, Michelle Connor, filmmaker Michael Moore and hundreds of individual donors.

To order this film click here.

View Awards and Film Festivals for The Panama Deception.

View video stills from the film.

Read what critics are saying about The Panama Deception.

View photos.

Read viewer reactions to the film..

Read the Action Alert.

Click here for an article about Trent's experiences shooting the film.

Be sure your library and video store stock the film...If they don't, have them get in touch with us.

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