Thursday, 22 Oct 2020 - 4 of Heshvan, 5781

Two leading German newspapers expose flaws in EU study of Palestinian textbooks conducted by German institute

Google+ Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr +

IMPACT-se, the Jerusalem-based Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education, had already discovered earlier this year that antisemitism, incitement to violence and hate in the Palestinian textbooks were ignored by the Georg Eckert Institute (GEI) and that researchers had in fact been reviewing Israeli Jerusalem Municipality textbooks, presenting them as belonging to the Palestinian Authority. These Israeli textbooks were the only examples of peace, tolerance and recognition of Israel cited in the report.

Dr. Riem Spielhaus, who heads the study at the GEI, admitted in a recorded interview with Der Tagesspiegel that the Israeli textbooks were indeed mistakenly included in the review.

Frank Müller-Rosentritt, a member of the Bundestag, the federal parliament, called on the German government to demand clarification about the review while fellow-member Alexander Lambsdorff demanded the German government halt funds to the Palestinian Authority and ensure that the EU followed suit.

Two German leading newspapers, Die Welt and Der Tagesspiegel, have expose a flawed European Union study of Palestinian textbooks conducted by a German institute  for ignoring antisemitism and hate, labeling terror as “resistance” and presenting Israeli textbooks as Palestinian.

IMPACT-se, the Jerusalem-based Institute for Monitoring Peace and Cultural Tolerance in School Education, had already discovered earlier this year that antisemitism, incitement to violence and hate in the Palestinian textbooks were ignored by the Georg Eckert Institute (GEI) and that researchers had in fact been reviewing Israeli Jerusalem Municipality textbooks, presenting them as belonging to the Palestinian Authority. These Israeli textbooks were the only examples of peace, tolerance and recognition of Israel cited in the report.

Criticizing the German government payments to Palestinian Authority education sector that promotes antisemitism in textbooks, the two German newspapers ran with the headlines “How Germany helps finance Antisemitism and Bombs in Books”, adding to increasing international criticism of the study and raising serious concerns as to its credibility.

Dr. Riem Spielhaus, who heads the study at the GEI, admitted in a recorded interview with Der Tagesspiegel that the Israeli textbooks were indeed mistakenly included in the review.

Die Welt wrote that this statement directly contradicts earlier justifications given by the EU for the inclusion of Israeli textbooks. The newspaper wrote: Just last week, Ana Pisonero, a spokeswoman for the EU Commission, told this newspaper that no false textbooks had been examined. Pisonero spoke of a “separate section on a very limited sample” of schoolbooks that had been modified by Israel and were in use in East Jerusalem.”  

The newspapers cite some of the worst examples of hate teaching the researchers failed to include in the interim review such as a 10th grade textbook peddling the antisemitic trope that Jews control finance, the media and politics for their own benefit.

The media outlets note how the researchers systematically ignore incitement to violence and hate including a reading comprehension exercise that uses the term ‘barbeque party’ to describe the burning of Jewish passengers on a civilian bus with Molotov Cocktails.

Der Tagesspeigel also condemned the inclusion in the textbooks of Dalal al-Mughrabi, a perpetrator of the 1978 Coastal Road Massacre that killed 38 Israeli civilians including 13 children. She is labeled “an empowered woman” by the reviewing institute. The article also noted the reviewers justify terror as “resistance”.

German parliament members immediately responded to the coverage, tweeting their incredulity at the flawed review and subsequent EU cover up, and calling for German payments to be halted to the Palestinian education sector.

Frank Müller-Rosentritt, a member of the Bundestag, the federal parliament, called on the German government to demand clarification about the review while fellow-member Alexander Lambsdorff demanded the German government halt funds to the Palestinian Authority and ensure that the EU followed suit.

Last week, 21 Members of the European Parliament called on the EU “to undertake a thorough investigation and take immediate intervention” regarding the Palestinian Authority textbooks written and used by education sector employees whose salaries are funded by the EU, as the books contain “antisemitic content and imagery, hate speech and incitement to violence, martyrdom, jihad.”

In a letter addressed to the High Representative of the Union and the European Commission, they called on the EU to withhold some funding to the PA due to the textbooks.

The letter highlighted the errors made by the Georg Eckert Institute and called for the partnership between the EU and the Institute to be terminated and for the study to be completed by an alternative institute.

Last May,  the European Parliament passed three resolutions condemning the Palestinian Authority for continuing to teach hate and violence in its school textbooks and which oppose European Union aid to the PA being used for this purpose.

The resolutions noted that problematic material in Palestinian school textbooks has still not been removed and called on the European Commission to ensure that salaries of teachers and education sector civil servants financed by the European Union are used to teach curricula that reflect UNESCO standards of peace, tolerance, coexistence and non-violence.

 

Share.

About Author

Leave A Reply