Posted: 5/5/2011 5:52:00 PM
Author: Ben Hartman
Source: This article originally appeared in the Jerusalem Post on May 6, 2011.
PA media, school books use ‘systematic indoctrination’
by Ben Hartman
Palestinian Media Watch report says indoctrination of Palestinian youth makes reaching a peace settlement impossible.
Palestinian Authority school textbooks and official government media practice routine indoctrination and denial of Israel’s right to exist, according to a report to be issued on Sunday by Palestinian Media Watch.
The report portrays what the organization describes as the indoctrination of Palestinian youth that makes reaching a peace settlement impossible.
The report is divided into five sections: the “theft of Palestine by Zionist gangs,”; denial of Israel’s right to exist; the depiction of Israel’s founding as the result of “colonialist initiatives”; “demonic” imagery to portray the State of Israel; and the teaching that justice will be served when Israel no longer exists.
Among other examples, the report cites a 12th-grade textbook issued by the PA that reads, “Palestine’s war ended with a catastrophe that is unprecedented in history, when the Zionist gangs stole Palestine and expelled its people from their cities, their villages, their lands and their houses, and established the State of Israel.”
The report includes a question from a quiz in a Ramadan supplement of the official PA daily Al-Hayat al-Jadida that asked, “The cursed James Arthur Balfour Declaration led to the theft of the homeland and the expulsion of an entire people, in a campaign of ethnic cleansing unparalleled in modern history. On what date and what month in 1917 was this declaration issued?” Also cited from the same newspaper is a column that describes the recognition of Israel’s right to exist in the region as “an environmental and security hazard.”
An example from PA television deals with a video clip from May 2010 in which a Palestinian narrator directs a question at Israelis, asking, “Where are you from? Where are you from? Where are you from? Of course, you’re from Ukraine, of course, you’re from Germany, from Poland, from Russia, from Ethiopia, the Falasha.
Why have you stolen my homeland and taken my place? Please, I ask of you, return to your original homeland, so that I can return to my original homeland. This is my homeland; go back to your homeland!”
PMW founder and director Itamar Marcus said on Thursday, “The denial of Israel’s right to exist is one of the foundations of Palestinian identity and one of the most basic, intrinsic problems” preventing a peaceful resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict.
When asked about Israelis who deny the existence of a Palestinian people or national identity, Marcus said, “There are certain Israelis that might have a problem with it, but there is no continuous indoctrination like you see on their side.
“These are not the actions of a leadership that wants peace,” he added.
“They don’t need to celebrate Israel’s founding the same way that Israel would look at the history of Palestinian terror. It was terrible, but if we can put it behind us we can move on and have peace,” Marcus said.