Saturday, March 13, 2010

Heroism and education

Shlomo Ben Yosef, a member of the Irgun underground, was executed by the British Mandatory authorities in 1938 after being caught while on his way to attack a civilian bus and killing indiscriminately its Arab passengers. This week the Minister of Education distributed prizes to students who filed dozens of papers about Shlomo Ben Yosef and his fellow militants who were also executed.

Education Minister Gideon Sa'ar said at the ceremony that integrating the tale of Those Who Ascended the Gallows into the educational curriculum is a good way of instilling values which youths should seek to emulate, strengthening their affinity to their country and their national heritage: "We have chosen to mark the story of Those Who Ascended the Gallows through an educational process imparting both knowledge and an educational experience." The dozens of students who received the award from the Minister of Education in person were chosen from among 750 who prepared papers on the subject in schools throughout Israel, with the encouragement and assistance of their teachers and special resources made available by the educational system. .

Also this week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu decided to establish a special team to monitor incitement in the Palestinian Authority. Its results will be published periodically in a special "Incitement Index", with the data published throughout the world by the government of Israel. One of the major issues which the team is to focus on will be the ongoing incitement in Palestinian schoolbooks, in particular... the depiction of Palestinian terrorists who harmed Israelis as heroes.