Confronting the Truth (DVD)

Truth Commissions and Societies in Transition (73 minutes)
July 2007
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Confronting the Truth shows how countries, which have experienced massive human rights violations, have created official, independent bodies known as truth commissions.

Since 1983, truth commissions have been established in over 20 countries, in all parts of the world. Confronting the Truth documents the work of truth commissions in South Africa, Peru, East Timor, and Morocco. Taking testimony from victims and perpetrators, and conducting detailed investigations, truth commissions create a historical record of abuses that have often remained secret. They identify patterns of abuse, and the structural and institutional weaknesses, and societal and cultural problems, and weak legal systems that made the violation possible. To remedy these faults, they recommend governmental, societal and legal reforms to address the pain of the past, to safeguard human rights and due process, and to ensure that the horror will not be repeated.

This video is 73 minutes long and in stereo. Please note that there are two different English language DVDs: one for PAL technology and one for NTSC technology.

Steve York

Steve York is a veteran documentary filmmaker who has worked in Europe, Asia, Africa, and North and South America on subjects ranging from religious fundamentalism to American history to nonviolent conflict. His programs are regularly seen on PBS and the networks, and have been recognized with awards at major film and television festivals and competitions. For his work on historical themes, he has received a Peabody Award (ABC News Special, Pearl Harbor: Two Hours That Changed the World, anchored by David Brinkley) and a Gold Hugo Award at the Chicago International Film Festival (ABC News Turning Point at Normandy: The Soldiers' Story, with Peter Jennings). He also produced Remembering The Bomb, filmed in Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the fortieth anniversary of the atomic bombings.

Neil J. Kritz

Neil J. Kritz is the Associate Vice President of the Institute's Rule of Law Program, which focuses on advancing peace through the development of democratic legal and governmental systems. Kritz conducts ongoing research, writing, and consultation on the question of how societies deal with a legacy of past abuses. He is the editor of a three-volume work, Transitional Justice: How Emerging Democracies Reckon with Former Regimes, and he has provided advice and organized conferences on questions of war crimes and mass abuses in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cambodia, Guatemala, Indonesia, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, and South Africa.

In 1990–91, at the request of the Russian Constitutional Commission, Kritz coordinated two expert reviews of the draft Russian constitution. He directs Institute working groups on humanitarian law, constitution-making, and the administration of justice during peacekeeping operations.

Since 1999, he has chaired a Palestinian-Israeli legal dialogue. At the request of the United States Department of Defense, Kritz prepared a curriculum on international law and the promotion of democracy for use in training United States and foreign military officials.

He has studied and written on the advancement of the rule of law through regional organizations such as the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. Before coming to the Institute, Kritz served as special assistant to the chairman at the Administrative Conference of the United States. He holds a J.D. from American University's Washington College of Law.

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