Muslims can only be victims, and Jews can only be aggressors. Anything that could possibly arouse sympathy for those “strongest in enmity” to Muslims (Qur’an 5:82) is bad for business, and clearly Hamas cannot tolerate that. Toward the end of the report, we find out the Palestinian Authority can’t, either. And they’re supposed to be the “moderate” guys.
“Hamas protests UN plans to teach Gazans about the Holocaust,” from the Associated Press, March 22 (thanks to all who sent this in):
The United Nations has launched a new plan to teach the Holocaust in Gaza schools, drawing fierce condemnation from Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers, school teachers – and even the body tasked with peace negotiations with Israel.
If implemented, it would be the first time most Palestinian children learn about Jewish suffering. But the outcry underscores how sensitive the issue is to Palestinians.
“Playing with the education of our children in the Gaza Strip is a red line,” Hamas Education Minister, Mohammed Asqoul told a website of the group. He said Hamas will block attempts to teach the Holocaust regardless of the price.
The uproar erupted after a UN official told a Jordanian daily in February that UNRWA, the main UN agency serving Palestinian refugees, would introduce a short case study about the Holocaust to Gaza students as part of its human rights curriculum.
“Instead of pre-emptive accusations, it is important for Palestinians … to fully understand the tragedies and suffering that happened to all people through generations, without divvying up facts and taking things out of context,” the official, Sami Mushasha, was quoted as saying.
UNRWA representatives refused to comment on the record, but one official said the agency was committed to introducing the curriculum for the next school year, beginning in September.
He added that officials were hesitating because they feared Hamas would incite loyalists to damage UN schools or harm their teachers if they introduce the materials. He requested anonymity because he was barred from discussing the matter with the media.
Hamas frequently accuses the UN of spreading immorality, and unknown assailants have attacked the agency’s property in the past, including the torching of summer camps last year.
Since Hamas seized power of Gaza in 2007, it has viewed the UN as the main challenger to their influence in the coastal territory. Officials have tried to limit the international group’s vast influence in Gaza, where it operates schools for some 200,000 children.
But the controversy over teaching the Holocaust in Gaza is more than a power struggle between the UN and Hamas, whose militant officials frequently deny the Nazi genocide of European Jewry ever occurred.
Many Palestinians are reluctant to acknowledge Jewish suffering, fearing it would diminish recognition of their own claims. Views range from outright denial to challenging the scope of the Holocaust.
Even Hamas’ bitter enemy, the Western-backed Palestinian Authority, which rules the West Bank, reacted angrily to the UN plan. And the Palestinian Liberation Organization, the chief body tasked with negotiating peace with Israel, rejected the idea.
“Teaching the Holocaust to Palestinian students in UN schools is unacceptable,” said Zakaria al-Agha, a member of the PLO’s executive committee.[…]
Yet even if the UN moves ahead with the plan this year, it could face another obstacle: its own schoolteachers. In about a dozen interviews, they said they did not want to teach the materials and warned of rebellion.
“The agency will open the gates of hell with this step,” said one schoolteacher, Sami. “This will not work.”