Zwick: I Don’t Have an Agenda on AfricaFebruary 08, 17
A heated exchange occurred between Eli Izhakoff, chairman of the World Diamond Council, and Ed Zwick, producer and director of the Blood Diamond, after Zwick challenged the diamond trade to right, what he called, the wrongs of the past 75 years of taking
Speaking at the Rapaport International Diamond Conference, Zwick noted more than once that he, “May be the one person here without an agenda.” Izhakoff, taking exception to laying the blame wholly on diamantaires, called Zwick to task. Zwick, interrupting Izhakoff commented, “I'm trying to provoke you, to inspire you.” “You do, you do provoke me Mr. Zwick,” replied Izhakoff.
When asked about his motivation for appearing at a conference Zwick replied, “How can I pass up the opportunity to join in a discussion with people who are able to do the most good on an issue I care greatly about?”
The stated goal of the one-day conference, held Monday during the JCK Invitation show in New York, was to find practical measures to help the more than one million artisanal diggers of West Africa who are currently living in extreme poverty, due to failed economies where natural resources are not used for local development.
“Remarkable things can be accomplished when industry, NGO’s, and government set aside their differences and work together for the common good,” Martin Rapaport said. “The big idea is that the only way to change the situation in Africa is by creating real jobs, sustainable economic development and the only way to create jobs is by bringing in the private sector.”
During a discussion about
During a midday press conference, protestors planned to picket the conference over the diamond industry's alleged failure to help