Israel in the News Jun/Jul 2000

Gentiles Join March of the Living
THE JERUSALEM REPORTParticipants are currently being recruited for a new program to take non-Jews from around the world on tours of the Nazi death camps in Poland and then to Israel. Tentatively called the March of Remembrance and Hope, it is modeled after the March of the Living International, which since 1988 has taken over 35,000 Jewish youths, mainly from North America, on a two-week tour of Poland and Israel.

The first group of mostly North American Christian participants is now being assembled, and is set to go toward the end of the year, says Aharon Tamir, the director of the new program, which is being run from the Tel Aviv headquarters of March of the Living.

The lengthy process of finding candidates for the trip began at a conference held last November at Washington D.C.’s Holocaust Memorial Museum. The recruitment drive has been extended to European countries, such as Britain, Germany, Netherlands, and Sweden, and has been helped along by cooperation from local universities, labor unions, and Holocaust centers.

“There are a lot of Holocaust-deniers in the world,” says Tamir. “Our purpose is to let participants know what happened in Europe 55 years ago, so it doesn’t happen again.”

The first Christian group, which is expected to number 1,000, will follow the same itinerary in Poland as the Jewish groups have—visiting cities where Jews used to live, followed by the Majdanek and Treblinka death camps—and be guided by survivors and teachers. It will arrive in Israel in time for the first Christmas of the new millennium.

“Bionic man” hears again
ISRAEL WIRE—An innovative operation, by international standards, of the inner ear has resulted in restoring hearing to deaf people in Israel as well as children born deaf.

The revolutionary technique involves implanting the shell-shaped cochlea in a manner that bypasses the sound-relaying factor in the inner ear and connects it by an electrode directly to the brain. The system was invented by Professor Yona Kronenberg at the Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer and will be displayed for the first time at an all-European scientific congress in Berlin and later in Antwerp, with emphasis on using it for children.

Prof. Kronenberg said the electrodes are introduced into the inner ear and connected to the auditory nerve which, in deaf patients, may not be deteriorated but essentially disconnected.

The new method, developed in Israel, is performed with full anesthesia and takes little time, less than an hour, in place of more than three hours for existing techniques. It also has no complications.

Russians exhibit ‘Hitler’s skull’
THE JERUSALEM POST (INTERNET EDITION)—Part of a human skull with a bullet hole in the center—purportedly that of Adolph Hitler—has been placed on exhibition at the National Archives in Moscow.

Also on show are some of Hitler’s personal possessions, including the sofa on which Hitler sat with his mistress, Eva Braun, when they committed suicide. It still has blood stains.

The exhibits were said to have been taken from the KGB’s secret stores.

The exhibition is being held to mark the 55th anniversary of Hitler’s suicide.

Hitler asked his adjutant that his body be burned so that it would not be put on display by the Allies. The Russians say that the remains of the burned body were found by members of the Red Army near the bunker where Hitler spent his last days.

The remains were reportedly kept in Moscow until former president Leonid Brezhnev ordered them destroyed in the seventies. But the skull is said to have remained in the secret stores of the KGB until this day.

Pitbulls tagged with Jewish stars
THE JEWISH TELEGRAPHIC AGENCY ON LINE—Germany’s Jewish leaders are planning to take legal action to stop pitbull owners from tagging their dogs with the same yellow stars the Nazis forced Jews to wear. The owners of these and other fighting dog breeds, which have been banned by Berlin authorities, are planning a rally to protest what they call racist attempts to wipe out their dogs.

Palestinians teach children to hate
INTERNATIONAL CHRISTIAN EMBASSY OF JERUSALEM— Teachers in Palestinian schools are formally instructed to drill into the minds of their young students the idea that “Zionism is racist and aggressive,” and implant the value of “wrath toward the alien thief who stole the homeland and dispersed its people.” Such are the chilling findings of a new exposé recently released by the Palestinian Media Watch center, headed by Itamar Marcus, based on its comprehensive review of the official teacher’s guides accompanying textbooks used by the Palestinian Authority in its schools.

For several years now, the center run by Marcus has monitored and translated from Arabic mainstream Palestinian newspapers, TV, and radio broadcasts, and textbooks used in Palestinian schools for anti-Israel and anti-Semitic content. In a widely circulated report last year, Marcus found PA textbooks were filled with inciteful descriptions of Jews and Israelis as cunning, deceitful, and treacherous, and routinely referred to Israel as the Zionist enemyand “oppressors.” The new 19–page study reveals that the official PA guides (which Palestinian teachers are required to use) contain much the same, instructing the educators to saturate the minds of their students with incitement against Israel and extreme anti-Semitic views.

For example, PA teachers are required to prepare their students for a Jihad (holy war) to liberate all of “Palestine” and to “cherish the jihad fighters who quench the earth of Jerusalem with their blood.” They are to instill in their students the idea that “Jews are dangerous enemies of Allah, Islam, and the Arab nation.” Students are asked to emulate the efforts of Saladin, who liberated Jerusalem from the Crusaders. PA teachers also are to refer to Israel as the “Zionist occupier,” and place it in the same category as “Fascism-Nazism.”

Meanwhile, new history books introduced in PA schools define Israel as a “thieving conqueror,” while the only map of “Palestine” in new PA textbooks eliminates the state of Israel, while labeling Haifa, Jafa, Beersheba, as Palestinian cities, and the entire Galilee and Negev as Palestinian land.

With the advent of the Oslo peace process in 1993, Israel pioneered a curriculum that promoted peace with its Arab neighbors, a program now in its seventh year that reaches all Israeli pupils. But the PA has maintained a rigid curriculum that continues to call for the liberation of all of Palestine, while describing Israel, Jews, and Zionism in the most demonic terms. PA officials say in their defense that these books are supplied by Jordan and Egypt. But this hides the fact that Israel adopted similar Jordanian and Egyptian textbooks when administering schools for Palestinian Arabs, but deleted “offensive” sections.

Despite the damaging report, the U.S. has decided to increase its substantial support of Palestinian education by an additional $10 million grant of assistance.

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