Middle East studies in the News
'P is for Palestine' ABC Book Teaches Kids 'Peaceful Side' of 'Intifada.' Jewish Outlets Not Happy. [on Golbarg Bashi]
by Dave Urbanski
Children's ABC book "P is for Palestine" about Palestinian culture features an entry titled "I is for Intifada" — and Jewish outlets aren't too happy about it.
The text of the two-page spread in question reads, "I is for Intifada, Intifada is Arabic for rising up for what is right, if you are a kid or grownup!" along with a father and son flashing peace signs next to a barbed-wire fence.
Author Golbarg Bashi — who teaches history part time at Pace University in New York City — told Campus Reform she "wanted to highlight the peaceful side of intifada, so that the image that goes with that page is with a father and child showing the peace sign."
But Campus Reform said that Jewish outlets — including the Jewish Journal, Haaretz, the Forward, the Jewish Chronicle and the Algemeiner — aren't happy about the "I is for Intifada" entry.
According to the Times of Israel, Jews relate "intifada" to "prolonged Palestinian violence and terror from 1987-1991 and 2000-2005, during which some 1,300 Israelis were killed. Around 6,000 Palestinians were also killed during the Palestinian uprisings."
"That's whitewashing violence," Israeli parent Daniel Schwarz told the Times after reading a copy of "P is for Palestine," while adding that the children's book spouts Palestinian propaganda and doesn't acknowledge Jews or Israel.
The following is Bashi's statement in response to the controversy over her book:
Bashi added to Campus Reform that she penned "P is for Palestine" because she "couldn't find any books in English about Palestine. I myself am a refugee child."
She admitted to the outlet that intifada is "associated with the Palestinian uprising" but maintained that it's "overwhelmingly peaceful."
"Protecting Palestinian trees is intifada," Bashi added to Campus Reform. "Wearing a Palestinian dress is intifada. Calling yourself Palestinian is intifada, when so many powerful people have said you don't exist."Note: Articles listed under "Middle East studies in the News" provide information on current developments concerning Middle East studies on North American campuses. These reports do not necessarily reflect the views of Campus Watch and do not necessarily correspond to Campus Watch's critique.
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