Palestinian children have learned from their elders: "Tel-Aviv, Jaffa, Haifa, Acco, Ramle... belong to Palestine" (PMW-PALESTINIAN MEDIA WATCH) Pedagogy of Hate - by Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook 01/04/04)
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If you want to know what´s really at the heart of the Palestinian
conflict with Israel, don´t ask the politicians or the diplomats. Go
to the new experts: Palestinian children. Unlike the rest of the
world, they´ve been paying close attention to what their leaders and
educators have been teaching them and they are ready to practice
what they have been taught.
For instance, children interviewed
on PA TV last week state clearly
and without reservation that Israel has no right to exist, and that
their goals for which they´re willing to sacrifice their lives is
Israel´s destruction and the expulsion of all Israelis.
[the Jews] came to take Palestine, that is Tel-Aviv, Jaffa,
Haifa, Acco, Ramle. All these cities belong to Palestine," one youth
explains in the broadcast, echoing years of standard Palestinian
Authority (PA) indoctrination. And because he is convinced that
Israel has no right to exist: "We hope, hope, hope and I emphasize
these things, that the Arab countries and the foreign countries, all
the countries of the world, will support the Palestinians and will
expel the Israelis."
"We must expel all Israelis from Palestine.
Because Israel - there is
nothing called ´Israel´ in the world. The Israelis [came] from
Holland, America, Iran."
The children are seen promising they
will keep fighting, generation
after generation, "until they liberate Palestine."
they don´t fear death in the struggle because it is
Shahada - Death for Allah. "Even if all the Palestinian children,
Palestinian youth, Palestinian women, and Palestinian men die, we
will not surrender!"
None of this is surprising to anyone who
has been paying attention to
what goes on in the PA educational system and its educational TV.
Israel is erased from PA maps, schoolbooks and historians deny
Israel´s history and right to exist, and educators at all levels
teach that Israel is a foreign colonial implant.
claims to the contrary, its textbooks continue to
delegitimize Israel and dismiss it as a foreign occupier: "Palestine
faced the British occupation after the First World War in 1917, and
the Israeli occupation in 1948." [National Education, Sixth Grade, p.
16]. Children are taught that all of Israel is part of "Palestine".
For example: "Among the famous rocks of southern Palestine are the
rocks of Beersheba and the Negev." About "Palestine´s" water sources
children are taught: "The most important is the Sea of Galilee..."
[Our Beautiful Language, Grade 6, Part A, p. 64; National Education,
Sixth Grade, pp. 9-10].
Such messages of delegitimization have
been affirmed by Prime
Minister Ahmad Qurei. He is on record as rejecting the idea of Israel
as a Jewish state. "President Bush said that Israel is a Jewish
state, which is a cause for our concern. This should not have been
said." [Al-Nahar-Lebanese and Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, June 15, 2003].
PA affiliated historians frequently appear on educational TV to
reinforce this message. Just last week historian and educational TV
host Dr. Isam Sisalem reiterated what he has said on numerous
broadcasts, that Jews " . . . have no history or connection to this
land" iut and are nothing but a "cancer" planted by Britain to
control the Middle East.
In the same educational broadcast last
week, another historian
resurrected The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the infamous anti-
Semitic forgery citing it as one of the foundations of the First
Zionist Congress in 1897.
"...The Zionist movement began at the
Basel Congress to plan the
exploitation of the powers struggle, and the struggle of Europe over
the Middle East..." said Dr. Riad Al-Astal, a history lecturer at Al-
Azhar University in Gaza.
Consequently when we view children on
PATV who say they want to
destroy Israel, to liberate "Tel-Aviv, Jaffa, Haifa, Acco, and
Ramle," and to expel the Jews, we are seeing children who are
accurately regurgitating the sentiments inculcated and reinforced
throughout PA society.
Indeed, years of anti-Israel
indoctrination have been alarmingly
effective in teaching PA youth that the Jews have no link to Israel,
that Israel has no right to exist and that the overriding goal of the
next generation -- even at the cost of their lives -- should be to
The essence of the conflict is Israel´s very
right to exist -- not
the question of borders, territories or refugees´. Peace negotiations
that do not address the PA´s educational system and its
indoctrination will be short-term paper agreements doomed to failure.
Palestinian children have already figured this out. Perhaps the
of us need to stay after school.
Itamar Marcus, director of
Palestinian Media Watch (PMW). Barbara
Crook, a writer and university lecturer based in Ottawa, Canada, is
PMW´s North American representative. (PMW.ORG.IL 01/04/04)
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