UNESCO’s newest member’s notion of Education, Science, and Culture
IMPACT-SE is a research organization that monitors and analyzes schoolbooks and curricula across the Middle East with an eye toward determining their compliance with international standards on peace and tolerance, a goal derived directly from UNESCO declarations and resolutions.
‘The monitoring of the Palestinian schoolbooks in use for the school year 2011 shows that the fundamentals against Israel and the Jews are upheld,’ the study concluded.
It said that the fundamentals included negating both Israel and the Jews.
Israel, for example, is not mentioned among the states of the Levant (which presently consists of the states of Israel, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria as well as the Palestinian territories) and Jewish holy places are never mentioned as such. For instance, Rachel’s Tomb in Bethlehem is presented as the Bilal bin Rabah Mosque.
According to the study, the Jewish and Hebrew identity of Palestine under the British Mandate is stricken out. One illustration twists a stamp of Palestine under the British Mandate by erasing the Hebrew term ERETZ ISRAEL PALESTINA.
The study also found that there was continued demonization of both Israel and the Jews in the books. Jews are described, among others, as violating treaties, getting rich unduly, deceitful, murdering children, disemboweling women and invading snakes. They are never presented in neutral or positive terms.
The study quotes the following examples from the Palestinian schoolbooks: ‘The Messenger of God [Muhammad] ordered Zayd Ibn Thabit to learn the language of the Jews in order to be safe from their cheating,’ History of the Arabs and Muslims, Grade 6, (2009), page 133; ‘Your enemies killed your children, split open your women’s bellies, held your revered elderly men by the beard, and led them to the death pits,’ Reading and Texts, Grade 8, Part 2,  (reprinted 2007), page 16; and ‘By your life! How come snakes invade us and we [still] observe a protection covenant [dhimma] which respects commitments?’ Arabic Language– Linguistic Sciences, Grade 12, (2010), page 61.
‘The Oslo accords and the Declaration of Principles are mentioned and even quoted, but they are not praised and a peacefully negotiated settlement is not advocated or supported,’ said the authors of the study.
‘In contrast, there is a lot of praise for jihad and martyrdom to free Palestine without defining clearly the territory to be liberated, hence implying that Israel’s territory is also to be liberated.’
The study quotes the following paragraph from a Grade 8 book: ‘Today the Muslim countries need urgently jihad and jihad fighters in order to liberate the robbed lands and to get rid of the robbing Jews from the robbed lands in Palestine and in the Levant.’
The Shoah is not mentioned at all, though one ambiguous passage reads as follows: ‘The Jewish question is first and foremost a European problem.’