Dead donkeys fear no hyenas

Synopsis

Ethiopia is one of the most productive and profitable agricultural areas in the world. With the consent of the EU or the World Bank, the Ethiopian government leases millions of hectares of supposedly unused land to foreign investors. Produce is exported far from Africa while hundreds of tons of food aid arrive in the country by air. Yet this is more than a disgraceful inconsistency: in recent years the country has experienced the greatest forced expulsions in modern history, the loss of livelihood for smallholders and protests have been severely repressed. Yes, desperation urges victims to take action because “dead donkeys fear no hyenas” … Please note the full version of this film is not available in  Germany, Switzeland and Austria.

Awards : - San Francisco Green Film Festival 2017 - Green Tenacity Award - Life After Oil 2017 - Best International Documentary Award - EINE-WELT-FILMPREIS NRW (2017) - Innsbruck Nature Film Festival 2017 - Best Film on the topic of soil - Social Impact Media Awards 2018 - Jury Prize for Transparency - HUMAN International Documentary Film Festival 2018 - Honourable Mention for Best Film

Director's statement

What I saw when the idea came was very simple. As food aid was going into the country, food products were being exported out. I was simply curious to see how this could be the case. What I found was that lives were being destroyed. I discovered that the World Bank and other development institutions, financed by tax money, were contributing to these developments in the region. I was ashamed, also ashamed that European and American companies were involved in this. What started as curiosity, soon turned into a real life political thriller. The Ethiopian government was misusing this multi-billion dollar development aid program for their own agenda. And it was destroying lives.

Why we selected this film

A distressing subject and poignant witness accounts for this beautifully directed documentary which highlights the scandal of land grabbing to which Ethiopia’s smallholders are falling prey. One of the people in the film, a local journalist, shows us the role of whistleblowers and the commitment of some who risk their lives, willing to do anything to alert the public and denounce these human and environmental disasters.