Dr. Arnon Groiss* has prepared the following working document which summarizes the Anti Semitic motifs that have been used in the PA Schoolbooks used in UNRWA schools , ever since the new school books were introduced to UNRWA by the PA in September, 2000.

The following are references to Jews, Israel and to the perceived solution of the present conflict in Palestinian Authority schoolbooks currently used in UNRWA schools in the West Bank (including few schools in East Jerusalem) and the Gaza Strip. This is an initial list, to be followed soon by a more detailed one, with the fully scanned material.

De-legitimization of Jewish presence the country in both past and present

  1. The Palestinians are direct descendants of the “Arab” Canaanites and Jebusites (Christian Education, Grade 2, 2010, p. 11; Our Beautiful Language, Grade 6, Part 2, 2012, p. 9; National Education, Grade 5, 2013, p. 30)
  2. Jews have “greedy ambitions” [atmaa’] in the country (National Education, Grade 7, 2013, p. 20)
  3. Jewish holy places (the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem, the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron and Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem) are all presented as Muslim holy places threatened by Jewish usurpation (National Education, Grade 7, 2013, pp. 21, 55)
  4. Israel’s 6 million Jews are not counted among the country’s inhabitants, while Israel’s Arab population and the Palestinians of the Diaspora are (National Education, Grade 6, 2013, p. 10)
  5. Jewish cities, including Tel Aviv, are not found on maps, except for one or two cases
  6. The Hebrew language is denied legitimacy: a Hebrew inscription is erased from a British Mandate stamp reproduced in a PA textbook (National Education, Grade 2, Part 1, 2007, p. 7)

Demonization of Jews

  1. Aggression and robbery (Reading and Texts, Grade 9, Part 2, 2013, pp. 51-53)
  2. Genocidal intentions towards Palestinians (National Education, Grade 7, 2013, p. 20)
  3. Unfaithfulness (Islamic Education, Grade 9, Part 1, 2013, question on p. 51)
  4. Enmity to Muslims (Islamic Education, Grade 9, Part 2, 2013, p. 41)
  5. Enmity to Christians (Christian Education, Grade 3, 2002, p. 86)

Non-recognition of Israel as a sovereign state in the region

  1. Israel does not appear on the map except for two cases. Many maps bear the name “Palestine” instead (Examples: National Education, Grade 2, Part 1, 2007, p. 16; National Education, Grade 4, Part 2, 2013, p. 33)
  2. Israel is not counted among the sovereign state of the region and its name is replaced by “Palestine” (Islamic Education, Grade 2, Part 1, 2013, p. 72; History, Grade 5, 2012, p. 27)
  3. The term “Israeli territory” is replaced by circumlocutions such as “the Interior”, “the Lands of 1948” and “the Green Line” (National Education, Grade 4, Part 1, 2013, p. 43; National Education, Grade 6, 2013, p. 10)
  4. Regions, cities and sites in pre-1967 Israel are described exclusively as Palestinian (Our Beautiful Language, Grade 5, Part 2, 2012, p. 90 National Education, Grade 2, Part 2, 2013, p. 25; National Education, Grade 6, 2013, p. 13)

Demonization of Israel as a source of evil

  1. Occupation of Palestine in 1948 (National Education, Grade 5, 2013, p. 30)
  2. Expulsion of the Palestinians from their homeland (Geography, Grade 9, 2013, p. 40; National Education, Grade 6, 2013, p. 12)
  3. Massacre of Palestinians (National Education, Grade 6, 2013, p. 12)
  4. Killing of Palestinian children (Our Beautiful Language, Grade 7, Part 2, 2013,p. 58; Reading and Texts, Grade 8, Part 2, 2013, p. 28; Reading and Texts, Grade 8, Part 1, 2013, p. 32)
  5. Destruction of Palestinian cities and villages (Reading and Texts, Grade 8, Part 1, 2013, p. 61; National Education, Grade 7, 2013, p. 55)
  6. Desecration of Muslim and Christian holy places (Christian Education, Grade 5, 2004, p. 81; National Education, Grade 7, 2013, p. 55)
  7. Demolition of Palestinian houses (Our Beautiful Language, Grade 2, Part 1 2013, p. 80; Reading and Texts, Grade 8, Part 2, 2013, p. 11)
  8. Uprooting of Palestinian trees (Our Beautiful Language, Grade 2, Part 1, 2013, p. 71)
  9. Pollution of Palestinian soil (Civics, Grade 6, 2013, p. 55; Health and the Environment, Grade 8, 2012, p. 112)
  10. Damaging Palestinian agriculture (Our Beautiful Language, Grade 5, Part 2, 2012, p. 66)
  11. Robbery of Palestinian water resources (Our Beautiful Language, Grade 6, Part 1, 2013, p. 48)
  12. Limitations on Palestinian tourism industry (National Education, Grade 7, 2013, p. 78)
  13. Attempts at the obliteration of Palestinian identity and heritage (National Education, Grade 7, 2013, pp. 44, 54)
  14. Crippling of Palestinian individuals (Health and the Environment, Grade 8, 2012 p. 86)
  15. Responsibility for Palestinian in-family violence (Civics, Grade 8, 2013, p. 55)
  16. False accusations regarding Palestinian terrorist activity (Reading and Texts, Grade 8, Part 1, 2013, p. 43)

Advocacy of the “Right of Return”, violent struggle, Jihad and martyrdom

  1. The Right of Return (Islamic Education, Grade 6, Part 1, 2012, p. 69; Our Beautiful Language, Grade 5, Part 1, 2013, p. 91; History, Grade 5, 2012, p. 7; National Education, Grade 2, Part 1, 2007, p. 36; National Education, Grade 4, Part 1, 2013, p. 43; National Education, Grade 5, 2013, p. 35; National Education, Grade 7, 2013, p. 21)
  2. The violent return of the refugees (Our Beautiful Language, Grade 5, Part 1, 2013, p. 50; Our Beautiful Language, Grade 7, Part 1, 2013, p. 28)
  3. Violent struggle as the way to liberating Palestine (never specifically restricted to the territories of the West Bank and Gaza alone – Our Beautiful Language, Grade 3, Part 2, 2013, p. 83; Our Beautiful Language, Grade 4, Part 2, 2012, pp. 20-21) Reading and Texts, Grade 9, Part 1, 2013, pp. 9-10, 12)
  4. Exaltation of Jihad (Islamic Education, Grade 7, Part 2, 2013, p. 60; Reading and Texts, Grade 8, Part 1, 2013, p. 44)
  5. Glorification and Call for martyrdom (Islamic Education, Grade 6, Part 1, 2012, p. 22, Our Beautiful Language, Grade 6, Part 1, 2013, p. 89; Our Beautiful Language, Grade 7, Part 1, 2013, p. 75; Our Beautiful Language, Grade 7, Part 2, 2013, p. 49; Linguistic Studies, Grade 8, Part 2, 2012, p. 60)
  6. Glorification of “prisoners of war” [jailed members or supporters of Palestinian terrorist organizations] (Our Beautiful Language, Grade 2, Part 1, 2013, p. 165; Our Beautiful Language, Grade 5, Part 2, 2012, p. 29; Our Beautiful Language, Grade 6, Part 1, 2013, p. 66)

*Dr. Arnon Groiss, a journalist who has worked for 40 years in the Voice of Israel’s Arabic language service, is an expert in Middle Eastern affairs who holds a Ph.D. degree from Princeton University’s Dept. of Near Eastern Studies. Since 2000, he has researched Middle Eastern schoolbooks including those of the Palestinian Authority.  

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