Anorak News | Angelina Jolie’s Safe Haven

Angelina Jolie’s Safe Haven

by | 19th, November 2006

Angelina Jolie’s Gap year…

HOW to you dress in a refugee camp?

For refugees, the choice is simple – you wear whatever you own, or whatever the charitable organisations have given you: see the elderly man risking ridicule in last year’s Manchester United shirt, the poor lad in marble denim, the girl in a Frankie Says T–shirt and Ugg boots.

But for those among us who visit refugee centres, know that such places are fashion minefields. What does Angelina Jolie, goodwill ambassador for the United Nations High Commission For Refugees, wear when among refugees in a camp in New Delhi.

“I’m grateful to the refugee families who spent their time with me and shared their stories,” says Jolie. “They are remarkable, courageous people.”

Easy words with which to discuss disrupted and displaced lives. We doubt any one of the residents of the camp OK! fails to name – we don’t learn what these refugees are seeking refuge from – think of themselves are courageous or remarkable. They only seek survival. And that is as normal and everyday as it gets.

Angelina is in India to film A Might Heart, the story of Daniel Pearl, the Jewish journalist murdered by All-Qaeda. Jolie is pictured sat in the centre of a group of young female refugees. She smiles. But Jolie’s smile masks an inner pain.

As OK! says, she and Brad Pitt were “rattled to their foundations” when they received death threats from al-Qaeda. Jolie is said to be stressed. A group of ex-SAS squaddies are believed to be protecting Jolie and her lover round the clock. Security is tight. It might just be that the refuges with whom Jolie mingles have never been so safe.

Of course, being threatened by al-Qaeda is no small thing – we who have also been threatened by the empire-building terrorists know that. And coupled with the “strain” of making a film, Jolie has ever right to be stressed.

And then there is the friend to tell us that Angelina is not happy Brad is producing his former fiancée’s Gwyneth Paltrow’s new movie.

Many would crumble. But Angelina glides on. She meets the refugees. She smiles. And she does so while wearing a pair of jeans and a white T-shirt. Her feet are bare. Her hair is loose around her shoulders. She sits on the floor crossed legged.

And yet even in this, the blandest American uniform, Jolie looks nothing less than the rich girl in town, the Gap year student mingling with the locals and empathising with their woe.

Her visit might well do some good, not last of all for the women in the group who can say they were on OK!. And for those among us who visit refugee centres…

Posted: 19th, November 2006 | In: Reviews Comment | TrackBack | Permalink