by Crescent International (News & Analysis, Crescent International Vol. 48, No. 8, Safar, 1441)
Last month, Israel’s Education Minister Rafi Peretz, announced new regulations to teach at Palestinian schools the law “that demonstrates our [Zionist] historical right as a sovereign people and constitutes a legal basis for the State of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people.” The apartheid ethos of this policy is clear from its wording — as if non-Jews did not live in Palestine prior to arrival of the Zionist squatters from Europe, Russia and North America.
The announcement should not come as a surprise. The Zionist entity is aware of its illegal colonial occupation of Palestine. The new law is designed to brainwash Palestinian children as well as Zionists to normalize the narrative of “original inhabitants.” Many Israelis hold two passports. In 2008, the “Jerusalem-based Menachem Begin Heritage Center found that 59% of Israelis had approached or intended to approach a foreign embassy to ask for citizenship and a passport.” This is one of the main reasons Israel fears and avoids a prolonged armed conflict, as most Zionists would flee to the country whose passport they are holding.
At present, education in Israel is segregated between Palestinians and Zionists. Israel does not consider Palestinians with Israeli passports as equal citizens. In March 2019, Benjamin Netanyahu declared via Instagram, “Israel is not a state of all its citizens. According to the nation-state law we passed [in July 2018], Israel is the nation-state of the Jewish people — and not anyone else.” There is a long-list of apartheid laws in Israel; Adalah, the Haifa-based human rights organization has made a long-list of those laws available online.
In Israel, the school system is a political and security project of the Zionist security agencies. Israel’s security agency is directly involved in the screening, appointment of teachers and principals, and monitors implementation of the curriculum in Palestinian schools. The Israeli attempts to control the Palestinian education system fits well into their overall ghettoization and siege of Palestinians. The former education minister of Israel declared in July 2019 that education of the Israeli youth is part of Israel’s PR work, known as the hasbara.
The policy, however, is already showing malfunction. For example, Israel only allows its students to go abroad on an exchange program if they have completed the course promoting Israel’s racist politics. Thus, many Israeli students take the course simply for checklist purposes in order to qualify to go abroad. Thus, the program is not achieving its intended purpose.
One of the reasons Israel has the legal flexibility to institute all sorts of racist laws is because the entity lacks a proper constitution. The Zionist entity has a veneer of legality known as a set of “Basic Laws” with a quasi-constitutional status. This allows Zionist officials to practice all sorts of verbal and mental gymnastics when trying to justify the apartheid nature of their regime to the global public. This framework though is a double-edged sword, as it often manifests logical inconstancies and outright racism of Israel’s policy, since every official can spin the laws and regulations of Israel in a manner, he/she sees fit for a particular moment. There is no centralized legal framework and this exposes inconsistency of the Zionist PR efforts.
The fact that educational issues in Palestine are part of a political project does not apply to Palestine only. As a Muslim educator, with international teaching experience, this writer can attest to the fact that international education is first and foremost a socio-political engineering project of Muslim countries. It is a soft nudge of Muslim societies towards secularism and the aim is to undermine the Muslims’ confidence in Islam.
Western educational institutions that develop curricula for schools in Muslim countries have a secular bias and a secular agenda. Most Muslim governments lack the political integrity to boot such organizations out of the country and lack competent cadre to replace them. Anyone who has taught in the Persian Gulf countries can easily observe Western dominance over the education system there.
Gaining control of education through the UN and the international education route has always been a political project in the Muslim world. As pointed out by a research paper of the Berkley Institute of Islamic Studies, Bernard Carra de Vaux, the French orientalist [read Islamophobe], wrote, “colonization is a business that requires time, and in which any abruptness could become fatal.” Everlyn Baring, better known as Lord Cromer, was the British Proconsul-General in occupied Egypt between 1877 and 1907 who he took de Vaux’s ideas even further and prescribed specific soft policies to re-educate Muslim societies.
No matter how distasteful the Israeli brain-washing policies in Palestine are, they are directed at a society that is awake to the spirit of resistance and can immediately understand the issues. In other Muslim societies where education is as politicized and colonized as Palestine, people are not even aware of it.