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The Oath

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(No longer in theaters)
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  • Director: Laura Poitras   Cast: Abu Jandal, Salim Hamdam
  • Running Time: 90 minutes
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Laura Poitras


Zeitgeist Films

Release Date

May 7, 2010

Release Notes



The most revelatory and essential documentary of 2010 is Laura Poitras’s The Oath. This vividly shot film takes off from the capture of Osama bin Laden’s driver, Salim Hamdan, one of Dick Cheney’s “worst of the worst” who spent seven years in prison, some of that in solitary. But the real story is Hamdan’s brother-in-law, Abu Jandal, a man of stature and intellect who swore an oath to bin Laden but changed his mind about jihad tactics after 9/11. Jandal’s words—and his subsequent ostracization by Al Qaeda—suggest reasons to fear the next generation of radical Islamists. And the ongoing failure of the U.S. to see him as anything but a terrorist gives us even more on which to brood.