Education vs. Indoctrination

The world is hoping for a peace plan that will stick between Israel and the Palestinians and most are anticipating some sort of a two-state solution.  Even U.S. President Donald Trump is envisioning this possibility with his yet-to-be-announced, “deal of the century.”  But promises, agreements, treaties, plans and “deals” will not work as all seem to be approaching the problem with a top-down solution rather than a foundational approach which is essential to achieving real and lasting peace.  What I am referring to is the Palestinian education system starting at the earliest level. 

As things stand right now, Palestinian children are not being educated; they are being indoctrinated.  The civilized world is generally appalled whenever children are used (abused) by adults in the commission of illegal or immoral acts yet there is no outcry against the Palestinians even though this is exactly what they are doing – using their children to continue and intensify their hatred for Israel.  

In 2017 there was a study conducted of the Palestinian elementary school curriculum.  It was discovered that for grades 1 through 4 the teachings in the newest textbooks were more radical than in previous editions.  Palestinian children are taught to be martyrs and to demonize Israel and the Jews brainwashing them into believing that Israel has no right to exist and that all of the land belongs to the Palestinians exclusively.  Shockingly, Palestinian youth are taught to be expendable.  Within the pages of Palestinian textbooks for elementary school children are 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.”  Basic arithmetic is taught by using dead martyrs and murdered Jews.

 

Students in upper grades are taught the strategy of violence and pressure in place of negotiations in order to achieve Palestinian goals.  To struggle against Israel and bring about its destruction is the main theme of all Palestinian education.  Empathy for Israel and the Jews is not even a consideration.  Furthermore, every textbook is laced with negative messages regarding non-Muslims.  In fact, a message often repeated is that those with opposing views are not merely the opposition but rather are to be considered as enemies to be eliminated.  

If ever there is going to be a lasting peace involving the Palestinians, there must first be a change starting with the very youngest and as soon as they take their first breath.  As it stands right now, from cradle to grave Palestinians are fed a steady diet of hate.  Peace will only be possible when the roots of Palestinian morality are changed to reflect respect and tolerance for others and when they acknowledge the right of all people, including Israel and the Jews, to live free from aggression and terror.