Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Debunking Pro-Palestinian Propaganda

I am cross-posting information from some of my colleagues in regards to the pro-Islam/anti-Israel propaganda training course being provided to teachers by both the Los Angeles and Orange County school districts. The presenters  are Islamic activists from CAIR and the Muslim Public Affairs Council among others, as well as anti-Israel activists from  various universities.

The below link  is being used by adjunct professor Jeffrey Cooper (Santa Monica Community College) in his presentation. It is written by professors Joel Beinin (Stanford) and Lisa Hajjar (UC Santa Barbara), both of whom are frequent speakers at anti-Israel events.. Cooper has made some modifications with the consent of both writers.

My friends at  The Israel Group have posted  hyperlinks to the Jeffrey Cooper version of the Primer on the Arab-Israeli conflict.

The below chart was composed by Louis Palme, a local writer and expert on Islam. Mr Palme is known to me personally. It refutes details contributed by California professors Joel Beinen and Lisa Hajjar, both anti-Israel activists. As stated, this material was used by Professor Jeffrey Cooper (with some modifications) during his presentation.

Lies and Half-truths about the Arab-Israeli Conflicts
Response to “Palestine, Israel and the Arab-Israeli Conflict: A Primer”
By Joel Beinin and Lisa Hajjar (revised 2014)

Questionable Statement        
Facts and Data Refuting the Questionable Statement    
The conflict between Arabs and Jews is a new one.  (Note:  Parsing among Zionists   and secular Jews is a false argument to diffuse the reality of this animosity which has existed since the 7th Century when Jews rejected Islam.)
·         Devout Muslims pray 17 rakas a day which include the demonization of Jews as “those with whom Allah is angry.” (Surah 1:7)
·         Arabs drove two Jewish tribes from Medina and executed the adult males of the third tribe in the market square, making slaves of the women and children. (Ibn Ishaq, page 464)
·         On his death bed Muhammad decreed that there would be only one religion in the Arabian Peninsula (Ibn Ishaq, page 689)
Religious differences are not the cause of the conflict.
·         The HAMAS Covenant of 1988 states in Article 11 states, “The Islamic Resistance Movement believes that the land of Palestine is an Islamic Waqf (endowment from Allah) consecrated for future Moslem generations until Judgement Day. It, or any part of it, should not be squandered: it or any part of it, should not be given up.”
Jews insist on establishing an exclusive Jewish state in all of Palestine
·         The 1917 Balfour Declaration (and its derivatives) all emphasized that, “nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine.”
The text implies that the nationalistic goals of a minority (Zionists) form the laws and policies of the State of Israel.  This is not true.

“The goal of establishing a Jewish state has meant, in theory and in practice, establishing a state composed of Jews only – a state that excludes non-Jews.”
·         The 1948 Declaration of Establishment of State of Israel states, “THE STATE OF ISRAEL will be open for Jewish immigration and for the Ingathering of the Exiles; it will foster the development of the country for the benefit of all its inhabitants; it will be based on freedom, justice and peace as envisaged by the prophets of Israel; it will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race or sex; it will guarantee freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture; it will safeguard the Holy Places of all religions; and it will be faithful to the principles of the Charter of the United Nations.”
Palestinians feared that the Zionists would dispossess them from the land they had farmed for subsistence for hundreds of years.
·         The text implies that the purchase land from these absentee Arab land owners was an act of foreign imperial rule.  There is no indication that this wasn’t merely the function of a free market.  (On page x/paragraph y, the text acknowledges that HAMAS decreed death for any Arab to sell land to a Jew.  Does that constitute a free market?)
The suppression of the Arab Revolt (1936-39) caused the factionalized, quarreling, and divided Palestinian leadership during the crucial decade (1939-1949) when the future of Palestine would be decided
·         Long before 1939, T.E. Lawrence wrote, “Rebels, especially successful rebels were of necessity bad subjects and worse governors. . . [A]nyone who pushed through to success a rebellion of the weak against their masters must come out of it so stained in estimation that afterword nothing in the world would make him feel clean.” (Seven Pillars of Wisdom, pp 649-659)  The Arab failure to achieve self-rule was of their own making.
The Palestinian leadership and the Arab League refused to participate with the UN Special Committee . . . acting in accord with the overwhelming sentiments of the Palestinian people.
·         Where is the evidence of this “overwhelming sentiment”?  
·         The text on page 8, parag. 6 asserts that the “overwhelming majority” of the Arabs in Palestine acquiesced to the reality of the Plan once it was formulated, wanting peace and wanting to live in harmony with their Jewish neighbors.
6/3 & 6/5
The document states in 6/3 that the European Jews had recently colonized Palestine.
·         This is contradicted by 6/5 which states that the Jews had acquired by purchase 5.8% of the total land area of Palestine.  This is not colonization.
The UN Partition Resolution set aside Jerusalem and Bethlehem as an international zone, but this was objected to by the Palestinians
·         Since the Crusades, Jerusalem has been a contentious region for all three major religions. If any peace were to result from the partition of Palestine, it was essential that this region be deemed “international,” open to all.
·         The speculation of what would happen under “Zionist leadership” is a red herring.
In the end, the UN GA knowingly designed the Partition Plan against the will of the indigenous Palestinian Arab majority population.
·         Where is the data to show this plan was opposed by the majority of the Palestinian Arabs?  The document states on page 8/parag. 6 that “the overwhelming majority of the Palestinian population acquiesced in the reality of the Plan because they believed they were powerless to stop its implementation.”
The State of Israel was established unilaterally without UN approval, and it   resulted in the “massive dispossession and expulsion of the indigenous Palestinian population (‘ethnic cleansing’) over the next two years.”
·         The departure of Palestinian Arabs was by order of the Arab nations prior to the Arab-Israeli War who said that remaining Arabs would be killed as collaborators.
Arabs argued that it was only because the British had permitted extensive Zionist settlement in Palestine against the expressed wishes of the Arab majority that Jewish statehood was on the international agenda at all.
·         Arab/Jewish statehood was unfinished business since World War 1. The League of Nations couldn’t find a solution, so it was passed on to the UN.  Today, 100 years later Palestinian leaders still refuse any proposal for resolving the issue.
·         The Palestinian position, as stated in the HAMAS Covenant, Article 13, is:  “Initiatives, and so-called peaceful solutions and international conferences, are in contradiction to the principles of the Islamic Resistance Movement. . . There is no solution for the Palestinian question except through jihad.”
The Grand Mufti of Palestine was able to find only about 3,000 supporters of going to war over the Partition Plan.
·         The document fails to identify Hajji Amin Al-Husayni, who joined Hitler in the fight against Jews during World War II.  After WW II, Al-Husayni lost much of his credibility and following in the Middle East.
Immediately after the proclamation of Israeli statehood, the neighboring States (Egypt, Syria, Jordan, and Iraq) invaded, almost exclusively, the territory allotted to the Palestinian Arabs to keep Abdullah from annexing the territory allocated to become the Palestinian state.
·         Why would Jordan invade Israel to prevent Jordan from annexing some of Palestine’s territory?
The systematic military, psychological, and economic warfare by the Jewish forces against the Palestinian civilian population during this period was an ethnic cleansing operation – whether by premeditation or not – and is regarded under international law today as a crime against humanity.
·         As pointed out above on Page 8/Parag. 4, there is plenty of evidence that the departure of the Arab Palestinians was ordered in part by the surrounding Arab nations.  Furthermore, the document goes on to say at the top of page 12, that neither Egypt nor Jordan allowed the Palestinians to exercise their right to self-determination.
·         It is difficult to lay blame for all of this at the feet of the Jewish forces.
The most infamous atrocity occurred at Deir Yasin on April 9, 1948, where 125 to over 250 Arab civilians were killed in an unprovoked attack.
·         Deir Yasin was a strategic village overlooking the only Tel Aviv – Jerusalem supply route.  Not only had local and foreign Arabs dug trenches overlooking the highway, they had been continually attacking supply trucks since December, 1947.
·         There is no evidence that there was a massacre of defenders or rape of women in this military operation.  Specific evidence includes:
1. The Jews gave warning to the residents to leave the town because it would be attacked to protect the supply route.  A safe exit route was left open during the attack.
2. Palestinians were trucked to safety in East Jerusalem.
3. Women and children casualties were due to a) collapse of houses after hand grenade blasts; b) men disguising themselves as women to avoid being shot.
4. Interviews with villagers after the attack could identify only 107 Arab civilians killed in the attack, out of 750 residents.
5. There were no rapes. “Hazam Nusseibi, who worked for the Palestine Broadcasting Service in 1948, admitted being told by Hussein Khalidi, a Palestinian Arab leader, to fabricate the atrocity claims. Abu Mahmud, a Deir Yassin resident in 1948 told Khalidi "there was no rape," but Khalidi replied, "We have to say this, so the Arab armies will come to liberate Palestine from the Jews." Nusseibeh told the BBC 50 years later, "This was our biggest mistake. We did not realize how our people would react. As soon as they heard that women had been raped at Deir Yassin, Palestinians fled in terror."  Source:
To this day, Israel has never allowed these Palestinian refugees or their descendants to return to their homes.
·         Israel could not simply agree to allow all Palestinians to return, but consistently sought a solution to the refugee problem. Israel’s position
was expressed by David Ben-Gurion (August 1, 1948): “When the Arab states are ready to conclude a peace treaty with Israel this question will come up for constructive solution as part of the general settlement, and with due regard to our counter-claims in respect of the destruction of Jewish life and property, the long-term interest of the Jewish and Arab populations, the stability of the State of Israel and the durability of the basis of peace between it and its neighbors, the actual position and fate of the Jewish communities in the Arab countries, the responsibilities of the Arab governments for their war of aggression and their liability for reparation, will all be relevant in the question whether, to what extent, and under what conditions, the former Arab residents of the territory of Israel should be allowed to return.”
·         Meanwhile, Israel preserved the assets and property of the Palestinians, including harvesting their crops in anticipation of reaching a peace agreement.  Israel also offered many partial compromises over the refugees, but The Arabs rejected all the Israeli compromises because they were unwilling to take any action that might be construed as recognition of Israel.
Large refugee camps established by the UN in 1949 remain in Jordan, Lebanon and Syria exist today 68 years after the war.
·         Post-war refugees are normally absorbed or disbursed soon after the war.  Examples include Poland, Finland, the 800,000 Jews expelled from Arab countries after 1967, and the 150,000 Turkish refugees from Bulgaria absorbed by Turkey in 1950.  The Palestinian refugee problem is a direct result of the Arab nations to either make peace with Israel or absorb the refugees as citizens. 
From 1948-1966, Israel imposed a strict military rule over the Palestinian minority in Israel. . . In many respects, they were, and remain today, second-class citizens.
·         Palestinian Arabs living in Israel actually have more civil rights than their counterparts living in other Arab nations, as confirmed on page 13 /paragraph 3 of this document . 

Below is the text of a message I have received from the pro-Israel organization, Stand With Us. It limits its objections to those points concerning Israel as opposed to those concerning Islam. Please note the links where you can send your own message to the LAUSD and OCUSD if you wish to protest this training. I have already done so.

An Urgent Message From StandWithUs

The Orange County Department of Education and the OC Human Relations Council co-sponsored an in-service training seminar for K-12 teachers called “Learning about Islam and the Arab World.” Two of the workshops are unequivocally anti-Israel. The seminar itself is produced by an anti-Israel organization called Fellowship of Reconciliation, which supports BDS. Participating teachers received salary points. The Los Angeles Unified School District also sponsored the same seminar.

Our only focus is on two anti-Israel workshops within the larger seminar. We do not oppose the overall seminar on Islam and the Arab world. We encourage teachers to be sensitive to their student's diverse classroom cultures.

The two workshops are given by Jeffrey Cooper and Rola Karam. The organization who produced the seminar is the Fellowship of Reconciliation.

There are numerous problems with both workshops, and the organization who produced them.

The “Palestine-Israel and the Arab Israeli Conflict,” given by Jeffrey Cooper, who is a part-time adjunct professor at Santa Monica College. His forty-page handout was originally written by two anti-Zionist academic activists, Joel Beinin and Lisa Hajjar. Cooper extensively revised his handout with their permission.

The “primer” on “Palestine, Israel and the Arab-Israeli Conflict,” is the only reading material offered. It is completely one-sided, presenting a biased and ideologically anti-Israel narrative. This assigned primer is filled with factual errors and omissions. It downplays and rationalizes Palestinian terrorism, ignores the dispossession of nearly one million Jews from Arab countries (who now comprise a majority of Israeli Jews) while constantly referring to Israeli Jews as “European settlers.” It speaks of the “long-lived Zionist and Israeli desire for ethnic supremacy and exclusivity,” calls for the wholesale “right of return” of the 1948 refugees and all their descendants, and refers to Israel as an “apartheid” state. As a teaching tool, it fails even the most basic academic standards as it offers no citations for its claims, nor a bibliography.

“Palestine Today: No Way to Treat a Child,” workshop, given by Rola Karam features similar issues. The title of this workshop is the same as an international propaganda campaign called “No Way to Treat a Child,” a “joint project of Defense for Children International - Palestine and American Friends Service Committee.” Both NGOs support the BDS movement against Israel. The NGO Monitor has several articles on their activities and funding.

The campaign accuses Israel of falsely imprisoning Palestinian children, without mentioning that Palestinian youth are routinely indoctrinated to commit violence against Israelis, soldiers and civilians alike.

The campaign also fails to criticize various Palestinian factions (Hamas, Fatah and others) for using children as young as 13 as suicide bombers, couriers, fighters, and on the “front line” as rock and Molotov cocktail throwers. When not used as soldiers, many Palestinian children are used as human shields by these groups. (For further information, see our information booklet “No Way to Treat a Child: The Plight of Palestinian Child Soldiers.”

As for the Fellowship of Reconciliation, it works with the anti-Israel “Boycott Divestment and Sanctions” movement. FOR was the parent body of the vehemently anti-Zionist Interfaith Peace Builders, which sends “3 – 4 delegations to Israel/Palestine every year” to expose participants to “everyday war and violence of the occupation” (saying nothing about terrorism). The delegations meet a range of anti-Zionist NGOs including Coalition of Women for Peace, Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD), Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, Mossawa, Badil and otherss.


Contact the Los Angeles Unified School District Board of Education here and the Orange County Board of Education here. You can find samples letters to send to Los Angeles and Orange County board members in each document as well. Please be courteous and respectful interacting with staff.

Connect with us:

Fousesquawk comment: Not only are the presenters very biased individuals who are activists to boot, I find it objectionable that teachers in any school district are receiving in-service training with such a politicized and one-sided agenda-both as to Islam and as to Israel. It is safe to assume that this is what teachers are supposed to pass on to students-our children- in the classroom. It is not education, it is indoctrination.

It would be equally objectionable if say, the president-any president-were sending his minions into the schools to advance his image or agenda. It would be equally objectionable if the Israeli  consul general were presenting a one-sided version of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to teachers, presumably that they would carry this message into the classroom. It would also be objectionable if Global Warming activists were training teachers. The list goes on and on.

We do not train teachers to teach and advance political agendas. This is exactly what is going on in LA and Orange Counties. To make matters worse, they are propagating a myriad of lies.

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