Pulled af­ter Pales­tine row

Book with­drawn amid parental anger

7 Days in Dubai - - NEWS - By Shoshana Ke­dem @B_shosh shoshana@7days.ae

A school op­er­a­tor has with­drawn a ninth-grade his­tory text­book af­ter par­ents com­plained that sec­tions on ‘ter­ror­ism in Pales­tine’ cast the coun­try in a neg­a­tive light.

The In­ter­na­tional School of Choueifat (ISC) in Dubai pulled Tech­nol­ogy, War and In­de­pen­dence by Ox­ford Univer­sity Press over a sec­tion ti­tled ‘What is a ter­ror­ist’.

Par­ents ob­jected to the re­peated use of the phrase ‘Pales­tinian ter­ror­ists’.

They also took is­sue with a def­i­ni­tion of sui­cide bomber that read: “Ex­plo­sives are at­tached to the bomber’s body. They ap­proach their tar­get and ex­plode the bomb. Pales­tinian ter­ror­ists are well-known for this.”

The book also states that the Pales­tini­ans “wanted their own coun­try – Pales­tine – and wanted land that Is­rael oc­cu­pies”. This sug­gested it is Is­rael that is the es­tab­lished state and Pales­tini­ans are the ag­gres­sors, some par­ents sug­gested. Ab­dul Hafeez, orig­i­nally from Tulka­rem in the West Bank, told 7DAYS: “I couldn’t be­lieve it. In this les­son they are talk­ing about the Pales­tini­ans as ter­ror­ists. I was really shocked. They are feed­ing the kids wrong in­for­ma­tion and de­vel­op­ing this ha­tred be­tween kids in other na­tions.” An­other par­ent, who asked not to be named, added: “The worry is these books are not only go­ing to Choueifat but that peo­ple are push­ing this kind of con­tent to the new gen­er­a­tion.” Neil Smooker, Deputy Re­gional Direc­tor of SABIS, which op­er­ates ISC, said: “The Grade 9 His­tory book KS3 Tech­nol­ogy, War, and In­de­pen­dence does not con­tain the words or thoughts of our school or staff, and ul­ti­mately does not re­flect our opin­ions on world mat­ters. It was a hu­man er­ror to over­look some of the book’s con­tents. We have hence­forth with­drawn the book from our cur­ricu­lum.” The group has with­drawn the text­books from its schools in Bahrain, Qatar and Jor­dan, ac­cord­ing to me­dia re­ports in those coun­tries.

A spokesman for Ox­ford Univer­sity Press said the book has been pub­lished since 2004 with­out any prior com­plaints.

He told 7DAYS: “We are cur­rently up­dat­ing the ti­tle, and will carry out a thor­ough review of the sec­tion in ques­tion to en­sure it is ac­cu­rate and cul­tur­ally sen­si­tive. We al­ways work to en­sure our ti­tles are ac­cu­rate, and re­gret any of­fence that has been caused on this oc­ca­sion.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.