How 18 cows became Israel’s most wanted fugitives and symbols of Palestinian resistance.
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The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has borne witness to numerous tragedies but in The Wanted 18 , an award-winning and astonishing true story, animation, claymation and interviews highlight an absurd footnote in the history of the bitter foes.
Set in the late 1980s against the backdrop of the first Intifada, The Wanted 18 begins with residents from the predominantly Christian Arab village of Beit Sahour in the occupied West Bank deciding to buy 18 cows and produce their own milk as a co-operative.
Wanting self-sufficiency and an alternative to Israeli goods, the residents, many of whom have never seen a cow, smuggle the herd into their village and begin to learn the fine art of milking.
Their venture is so successful that the collective farm becomes a landmark and the cows local celebrities – until the Israeli army takes note and declares the farm “a threat to the national security of the state of Israel”.
Consequently, the dairy is forced to go underground, the cows continuing to produce their “Intifada milk” with the Israeli army in relentless pursuit.