Members of Congress now are poised to act against the advocacy of violent jihad and hatred toward non-Muslims in Palestinian school textbooks.
It was shortly after 9/11 that WND reported the incitement for jihad and “martyrdom” in a textbook for Palestinian 11th graders.
Now, a bill in Congress, H.RF. 6034, would require the Secretary of State “to submit annual reports reviewing the educational material used by the Palestinian Authority or the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East in the West Bank and Gaza.”
Sponsored by Reps. Peter Roskam, R-Ill.; David Young, R-Iowa; Josh Gottheimer, D-N.J.; and Brad Sherman, D-Calif.; it is called the Palestinian Authority Educational Curriculum Transparency Act.
Shiri Moshe, writing for the Jewish news website The Algemeiner, said the bill explains that despite being reformed in 2016 and 2017, Palestinian curricula for grades 1 through 11 “fail to meet the international standards of peace and tolerance in educational materials established by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.”
The books “demonize Israel, encourage war, and teach children that Palestinian statehood can be achieved through violence.”
UNRWA runs 349 schools, with 240,000 students in Gaza and 50,000 in the West Bank.
The proposal states: “It is the sense of Congress that the Palestinian Authority and UNRWA have not sufficiently worked to eliminate all content and passages encouraging violence or intolerance toward other nations or ethnic groups from the curriculum.”
It calls for an annual assessment of whether such content has been removed, whether the books conform to the the Declaration of Principles on Tolerance by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and whether U.S. money is used. The report must be made available to the public.
“If the report finds that the hate has not been removed, the House Foreign Affairs Committee will not tolerate U.S. funds being used to teach the curriculum in UNWRA and PA schools,” Marcus Sheff, CEO of the Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education, told The Algemeiner.
The bill is pending before the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.
Jihad ‘inevitable’ if there’s ‘resistance’
The textbook for Palestinian 11th graders reported by WND shortly after 9/11 advocated physical aggression, after trying friendly persuasion, as a legitimate means to spread Islam.
“Islam is Allah’s religion for all human beings,” the text said. “It should be proclaimed and invite [people] to join it wisely and through appropriate preaching and friendly discussions. However, such methods may encounter resistance and the preachers may be prevented from accomplishing their duty … then, jihad and the use of physical force against the enemies become inevitable.”
In March, as WND reported, the issue was in the headlines again when the Palestinian Authority said it was a “crime” to use Israeli materials in Arab schools in Jerusalem, instead of Palestinian books, because the Israeli publications don’t teach children to demonize Jews, glorify terrorism and become “martyrs.”
A report published by the Gatestone Institute by Bassam Tawil, a Muslim in the Middle East, explained Palestinian Authority Minister of Education Sabri Saidam was fretting because of a decision to use the Israeli curriculum in Arab schools in Jerusalem, a move he called an “ugly crime of counterfeit.”
“Why are the minister and the Palestinian Authority so truculently opposed to Arab schoolchildren studying according to the Israeli curriculum? Is this curriculum really an ‘ugly crime of counterfeit,’ as the minister says?” Tawil asked.
“The main reason the PA leadership is opposed to the Israeli curriculum is because it does not promote hatred. The curriculum also does not demonize Arabs in parallel to the way the Palestinian curriculum demonizes Jews.”
In 2003, WND reported that while “virulent anti-Jewish” teaching was moderated after the Oslo Accords, they returned.
A book at that time stated that during Muhammad’s establishment of an Islamic society, there “was no escaping the fight against aggression and the polytheists.”
After that, the book says, “the duty of jihad was imposed on all Muslims.”
Recently, a study titled “Palestinian Elementary School Curriculum 2016-17: Radicalization and Revival of the PLO Program” found Palestinian children were being taught through textbooks “to glorify and value terrorism and violence.”
Included were messages such as “The Volcano of My Revenge,” “The Longing of my Blood for my Land” and “I Shall Sacrifice My Blood to Saturate the Land.”
Math books were using the number of dead martyrs to teach arithmetic.
Earlier this year, a British commentator blasted his government for underfunding education in the U.K. while spending millions of pounds to provide textbooks to Palestinians to teach their children to become martyrs.
Douglas Murray, an author, commentator and public affairs analyst, wrote for Gatestone Institute that “the true scandal for Britain” is “that while the UK government fails to pump the resources needed into helping young British children to grow up literate and numerate … it pumps millions of pounds into the Palestinian Authority to make sure that young Palestinian children think that a career of violence is a career worth pursuing.”
“While failing to help British children grow up, the UK government helps Palestinian children to blow themselves up,” he wrote.