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Hamas govt urges children not to study Holocaust
Published Tuesday 01/03/2011 (updated) 03/03/2011 10:57
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GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- Gaza government officials on Tuesday urged school children to leave classrooms if human rights lessons included information about the Holocaust.

The Hamas-led government said it would do everything it could to prevent children being taught about the Holocaust in UNRWA schools in the Gaza Strip. It accused the UN agency of overstepping its humanitarian and relief role.

UNRWA spokesman Chris Gunness explained that human rights education has been part of the agency's curriculum in schools across the region since 2002. In Gaza, the agency runs 228 schools, educating over 200,000 children.

"Because of the situation in Gaza, we have been enriching further our human rights education" in the coastal enclave, Gunness said, explaining that the program was anchored in the principles of the UN Declaration of Human Rights.

Gaza Education Minister Mahammad Ashquol said his ministry "will never allow teaching Holocaust to Gazan refugee camp children."

"Messing up Gaza's education system is a red line which can’t be ignored," he added.

The Hamas-run Ministry of Culture also issued a statement slamming the inclusion of information about the Holocaust in the UN curriculum, which it described as a "challenge" to Palestinians.

Ministry officials said the lessons were an overt intervention in Palestinian affairs, and that the "suspicious plot" should be countered. They urged teachers to refuse to include the Holocaust in their lessons, claiming that teaching the subject amounted to "complicity in a crime against culture."

Further, officials asked children to leave the classroom if teachers tried to tell them about the Holocaust or gave them books about the atrocity.

The UNRWA spokesman said children in Gaza deserved an education which was not disrupted or politicized.

Rather, they deserve to learn "in peaceful, non-politicized spaces in which they can attain the highest level of human development," Gunness said.
1 ) izzy / usa
01/03/2011 21:45
" Gaza's education system "
Hate israel, Hate jews, Hate america.

2 ) John / USA
02/03/2011 00:22
Hamas: You are a bunch of idiots! There is nothing wrong with learning about the Holocaust. If for no other reason it helps Palestinians understand the psychology of Jews and Israelis. Even if you believe the Holocaust to be exaggerated or overemphasized, even made up, knowledge is power. Gazan children should not be denied exposure to what is taught the world over. Let them understand that it was European bigotry and hatred which led to the mass immigration of Jews to Palestine.

3 ) Charlie Nevin / USA
02/03/2011 01:32
Only neo-Nazis would outlaw or hinder the inclusion of the Holocaust in the educational curriculum. The people of Gaza should rise up like their brothers in Libya and depose the Hamas despots who are nothing but puppets of Iran and are damaging the prospects and future of Palestinians

4 ) Fadel / Nablus
02/03/2011 03:38
hamas is very much right...

5 ) John / NZ
02/03/2011 03:57
In this Hamas is being part of the wider problem of demonisation of the other. Teaching of both the Holocaust and the Nakba should be taking place in all Israeli and Palestinian schools. Each must however be taught in a truthful and balanced way to build mutual understanding of who their neighbour really is from learning about their actual experiences as a people. And include teaching on how well they lived together before 1900 so they can glimpse the hope of doing so again one day.

02/03/2011 06:22

7 ) Ali / Amman
02/03/2011 10:02
2 ) John / USA. I am Palestinian. And I totally agree with you, Sir.

8 ) M.K / Sweden
02/03/2011 13:59
Spot on Hamas! The palestinians shouldnt be brainwashed by jewish suffering when they have suffered for over 60 years because of the jews.

9 ) Julie / USA
02/03/2011 14:18
israel should teach all the israeli children about the atrocities their regime has committed against gazans. the number of gazans murdered, tortured, and starved will fill volumes of school books AND give the little ones the highest level of human development...as truth always does! :)

10 ) Outsider / EU
02/03/2011 15:41
Ignorance is not bliss, Hamas. It's ignorance. Given the current situation in Gaza, one of the only things this generation can give to the next is an education. Besides, an explanation of the Warsaw Ghetto would be revealing to most kids there.

11 ) izzy / usa
02/03/2011 16:35
all you people who say that Hamas is right telling kids NOT to study the holocaust, should think what if the entire western world was told not to study about arab suffering.

12 ) Mel / Gaza
02/03/2011 18:16
I really can understand why teaching the Holocaust is a sensitive issue for the government here. However, the problem does not lies not in the topic but in the way it is taught because the Holocaust is often used as a justification for the establishment of a "Jewish homeland", i.e. Israel! This is of course a distortion of facts because we all know that the intention of establishing a state was there long before the Holocaust! Here is the real problem.

13 ) Mel / Gaza
02/03/2011 18:19
If the Holocaust can be taught according to facts without the very popular justification (mentioned above) I don't think it is a problem. As well as that the Holocaust should be taught with the Nakba!!!

14 ) Mary / US
02/03/2011 19:05
If the holocaust were as it is represented - questioning and investigating it would not be outlawed. It is illegal to protect a story certain powerful people don't want investigated.

15 ) John / USA
02/03/2011 22:14
#7 Ali: I am Palestinian also, unfortunately many of our "leaders" go out of their way to look stupid in front of the whole world. #12 Mel: Yes, Zionist have used the Holocaust to shamelessly garner sympathy, but no one can argue that it justifies the theft of an entire nation that had nothing to do with the Holocaust. The Holocaust is a stain on the west not us.

16 ) Phil / UK
03/03/2011 12:09
The biggest problem doesn't come from them refusing to teach their kids about the Holocaust. It comes from them teaching them that they must succeed were Hitler failed.
Anyone who has watched Pal kids TV, or for that matter, the racist crap that is pumped into kids heads via the TV throughout the ME will know exactly what I am talking about.
The two world wars did not start with the first bullet. There were years of that kind of racism beforehand. WWIII will be no different !

17 ) Yakov / Israel
03/03/2011 15:35
John, check history for facts, there is no such nation as Palestine. Palestine is an area like South Africa. And the palestinian people that everybody talking about is people how lives in palestine area, NO SUCH NATION = FACT !!. And further more, 70% of current "PALESTINIANS" as you call them, are poor people who ran from IRAN, IRAQ and some other muslims countries in the 50's,60's,70's. If the MUSLIMS so much love god, they should know we love him, more and this land was given to JEWS !!

18 ) Shuile / Israel
03/03/2011 16:20
I read the comments and I'm amazed at the amount of lies and ignorance prevalent in the world. This article demonstrates how terrorist organizations like Hamas and other Islamic leaders want to impose their own lies, which is possible only where there is ignorance. Palestinian are led by terrorist corrupted leaders. They need to learn everything! And know also about human rights and democracy,Know that the Jews in Israel want to live quietly, in peace with their neighbors.

19 ) Shulie / Israel
03/03/2011 16:25
The leaders of the Palestinians spend a lot of money on terrorism and not on the welfare of their population. They want these children to grow up to hate Israel and the U.S. and later become Shahids (martyrs). Please let the Palestinians learn about the truth of all nations' history. Maybe we will have hope for better future based on good education, good health, peace, freedom from terrorist leaders... for both Israelis and Palestinians...

20 ) Dejan / Israel
03/03/2011 17:29
Of billions of dollars spilt into "Palestine" by their Arab brethren, the Europe and the USofA in the last 20 years, how much was spent for education, infrastructure (no, not tunnels), health or jobs and how much dissolved into thin air of corruption and arms smuggling?
Hate is a poor foundation for building a future on!

21 ) Lawrence / UK
03/03/2011 18:00
The children should not be shielded from the mistakes that Arab political and religious leaders have made over the years. They should know about Hajj Amin el-Husseini's role in the Holocaust, el-Banna's and the Muslim Brotherhood's support for it and understand that Qaradawi's support for such ideas is morally wrong. They should be aware that the Naqba was inflicted on the Palestinians by the Arab leadership's deluded propaganda. They should value peace through partnership, not through conquest.

22 ) Ofran / independant Israel
03/03/2011 18:29
How dae they? how can the UN still support Hamas? what sort of a future can oen predict to these brain washed kids? denying holocaust is not a Jewish Problem, it's thwe worl's problem/ today they deny the holocaust tomorrow they will deny other genocides as well as the killings and muders of their own brothers and sisters, Fatah's supporters, gays etc.Hamas is TERRORIST ORGANIZATION do not let them rule this world

23 ) RYH / Israel
03/03/2011 19:16
The education in gaza is like a nazi-military summer camp.
hate the wester world-hate israeli people-desroy the world or islamize it.

24 ) John / USA
03/03/2011 20:53
17) Yakov: How does the phony argument that "Palestine never existed" excuse the ethnic cleansing and destruction of hundreds of villages of a people who have lived on the land for hundreds and thousands of years? Following your twisted logic Hitler must have been justified in his desire to rid Germany of Jews because Jews never had their own country in Europe? All Hitler wanted after all was a nation for his Aryan people right? Sound familiar?

25 ) Eric / Israel
03/03/2011 22:40
The Arabs of what was formerly the region, not nation, of Palestine were committing atrocitys against Jews in the 20's and Haj Amin al Husseini the Mufti was in Berlin in WWII calling for the final solution, and helped to form an SS division. Israel is in its ancestral homeland, and the majority of Israelis descend from Jews who suffered their own Naqba from Arab countrys. To say that Israel was created by European Jew hatred only, ignores the many pogroms the Arabs also committed against Jews.

26 ) Abbed / New Zealand
03/03/2011 22:52
All Hamas doing is torturing their own people. Trying to control people with fear and ignorance. In the end the people will win, like we would win in Egypt, and bring peace with Israel to the Middle East.

27 ) John / USA
04/03/2011 01:12
After reading all of the twisted comments of Israelis who only can recognize Jewish suffering, but do not recognize the suffering caused by Zionism I come to the conclusion that the Holocaust should definitely be taught to Gazans...if only to show that people who suffered can turn around and do the same, and worse, to others.

28 ) rita / Israel
04/03/2011 11:27
Hamas is an organization which is causing a Holocaust in their own homeland, they kill their own people and children and who ever disturbs him to spread radical Islam and hatred of Israel

29 ) John / USA
04/03/2011 20:48
28) rita: I am sure Hitler blamed Jews also for what ultimately happened to them in the camps. A shame that a people with such a painful history can be so arrogant and deny their own role in the suffering of others. Wake up rita, your living on the land where those children you talk about call home.

30 ) Netanel / Israel
05/03/2011 22:39
Mel / Gaza: Arabs have 32 countries, Jews have only 1. Jordan is the real palestinian state since 70% of it population are palestinians. The Jewish state in Israel was constructed far before prohit Mohamad was born. We all know how huge investments the palestinian people does in order to eliminate every evidence which proove that the land of Israel belong to the jewish nation, starts with massive destruction at the mount of temple.

31 ) Karen / Mexico
12/03/2011 00:14
My middle school students studied the Holocaust this past semester. It is important that we learn from history, and not bury it.
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