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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Guardian UK: Teach your children lies (updated)

From The Guardian Teacher Network:
Israel's assassination of Hamas' top military commander this week has triggered fears of a whole new surge of violence in Gaza and the Middle East. The Israeli air strike on the Ahmed al-Jabari's car – which also killed a six-year-old girl and an 11-month old baby – was just the first step in a new Israeli military operation to eliminate militants and weapon sites in the Gaza Strip.
So, this is what UK teachers are telling their students?

Of course, the Jaabari hit not only caused little collateral damage, it was an amazingly little amount of collateral damage. As the rival Telegraph reported:

It was a remarkably successful operation even for Israel's security forces, who pride themselves on their skill at despatching their enemies. Grainy black and white footage taken from a drone showed a minibus full of passengers drive past the target's car to a safe distance, seconds before the missile exploded. A piece of chassis is seen spinning into the air, as the vehicle, in flames, continues drunkenly for a few yards.

Unlike targeted killings in the past, there was no collateral damage except for some minor injuries from flying glass. Israel has learnt the hard way that accidentally killing civilians carries a damaging political cost.

I tweeted to the Guardian and to the columnist about the error many hours ago, but they have yet to correct their slander.

The page also has a set of resources for UK teachers to teach about the Middle East. From the descriptions, they seem to be as biased against Israel as the Guardian itself is, by constructing a framework of history that begins around 1920, disregarding the millennia-old attachment that Jews have to the Land of Israel. When your narrative starts at a time when Jews appear to be new colonialists rather than people returning to their national home, everything else cannot possibly be taught accurately. The next generation of British schoolchildren will grow up with an incorrect understanding of the conflict.

It seems entirely possible that this is exactly what the Guardian wants.

See also CiFWatch.

UPDATE: The page was finally corrected. Another small victory for truth.