Documentary Review: Side by Side- Women, Peace and Security

On August 15th, the Australian government in partnership with UNWomen, launched “Side by Side: Women, Peace and Security”, a 30 minute documentary on the implementation of UNSCR 1325.

The documentary features an introduction by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, as well as interviews with a range of stakeholders, including WILPF Australia's National Director Barbara O'Dwyer and Young-WILPF Australia co-founder Cara Gleeson.

Developed for use in pre-deployment training for military, police and civilians in peacekeeping operations, the documentary and accompanying educational material will provide an introduction to UNSCR 1325 and the Women, Peace and Security agenda.

Education and the dissemination of information are vital to the successful implementation of UNSCR 1325 and this documentary provides a commendable positive step in this direction. However, it is notably silent on what PeaceWomen Director Maria Butler has called in her recent paper, “the two silent “Ps”: Proliferation and Profit”.

WILPF with other women's civil society organizations have argued that the Women, Peace and Security agenda is foremost a tool for conflict prevention and its implementation rests upon addressing the root causes of war, and transforming cultures of violence into cultures of peace. Such transformational objectives cannot be understood or achieved without attention to the proliferation of weapons, or preservation of systems in which war is an international business.

“Side by Side: Women, Peace and Security” is a positive step in educating peacekeeping forces about the differential impact of war on women and girls and promoting the role of women as active agents in peace and reconciliation efforts. But, it remains a task for us all to ensure that prevention is at the core of our work, and we do not remain silent on Proliferation or Profit.

You can view “Side by Side: Women, Peace and Security” on UN Women's YouTube channel here

Image: WILPF Australia