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Tamar Yonah is one of Israel's most popular English-speaking radio show hosts. She made Aliyah from Southern California and after serving in the Israeli army began a prolific career in radio, including production, news and program development. She was the original creator and producer of 'The Aliyah Show' and still works whenever she can in that field. Tamar is a political activist, wife and mother residing in Judea and Samaria and currently hosts the top-rated shows of The Weekend Edition & The Tamar Yonah Show. Her award winning blog covers current events, religion, politics and anything else that's on her mind.
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Nisan 8, 5770, 3/23/2010
Charlie Shrem, a student who is majoring in 'Middle Eastern studies' in New York, wrote me a disturbing note about what is going on in his and other schools with their text books.
He wrote me that he's writing a paper for his middle eastern studies degree, and basically took his textbook that the college uses, and would, in his thesis, prove his text book was wrong!
Charlie wrote me the following,
'Tamar, You have no idea how many blatant lies were in the textbook that the whole school uses! It was ridiculous. The textbook is supposed to objectively cover the "Israel-Palestinian Conflict " but it was so biased to the Arabs, it was disgusting. I proved all their examples wrong in every chapter, using quoted actual sources, not media reports. I quoted British Police reports from 1948, speeches and interviews by Israel, Arab, British and American leaders. It's horrendous that this is what the American Jewish youth is learning in universities today.'
And so I had Charlie on my show to talk about it. Following the airing of the show, I received an email from one of the listeners named Elka, who wrote me the following:
I've just finished listening to your show where callers complained about their college textbooks.
Complaining to the college or to the publisher will not do any good because this is a question not of just a couple of textbooks with "errors" or "lies" in them, this is a question of the views that are a "must" for anyone who wants to write textbooks and have them published. This is too big for mere complaints and, basically, at this point, insurmountable.
It starts in public schools where European history is taught as the history of the church using the textbooks where Jews are mentioned in a couple of sentences not forgetting the trading and the money lending as their (sigh) sole occupations (most Jewish children in the US, as you must know already, attend PUBLIC schools).
The only EFFECTIVE way to fight this is for ALL the Jewish students to quit these universities en masse and continue their education in Israel i. e., HIT THEM IN THE POCKET! And write a nice letter to the university president thanking him for helping them make the decision to make aliyah and mail it right before boarding the plane.
Please do not give them mixed messages, i. e., "Stay where you are and fight!" vs. "This is the 30s in Germany, get out!" because they cannot do both.
Here are my own examples:
I am currently enrolled at a college in the Midwest which shall remain nameless because I have no grudge against the college (as I already explained, the problem goes much deeper).
I took a History course (Western Civilization, the textbook written by a Jew) where the instructor talked at length about "Jewish persecutions of (early) Christians", reenacted for the class how the Jews shouted "Crucify him! Crucify him!", announced before the class that in 1492 Muslims(!) were expelled out of Spain (in actuality in 1509) without mentioning the Jews (I had to say it out loud for him). The textbook didn't mention anything about the Jews aside from the usual.
I've also taken an Anthropology course where there is ONE sentence (nothing of importance) devoted to Jews but a whole article about the most peaceful religion in the world.
I also have a college Geography textbook where the author emphatically states that the science has proven that all civilization started in East Africa (not the Middle East) from where Homo sapiens crossed on their way into North Africa, Arabia, "and spread all across Asia" although she does state that animal domestication, irrigation, etc. started 10,000 years ago in the ME - very confusing), and both India and China are called "civilization hearths" with Hinduism being named as the oldest religion in the world, and China - the oldest known civilization.
About Israel - not a word about the mandate; creation of Israel by the UN caused the conflict, etc.; small size and population belie Israel's "real power", Israel gets "massive" U.S. financial aid, the number of "stateless" "Palestinians" is estimated at 10(!) million, Golan and Jerusalem are a "problem", etc. Bombing of Israel from Gaza is replaced with "border skirmishes".
This is NORMAL, Tamar. This is the party line of every red-blooded college professor and researcher (and schoolteacher).
It cannot be fought in the U.S., not anymore. It's a different country than the one you remember.
Why is the Jewish Agency sitting on its hands?
The Jewish Agency has just announced that it is doubling its representation on American campuses. How far from zero was that before the "doubling up"?
Why is Nefesh B'Nefesh selecting rich retirees and the wealthy to make aliyah? The rich can lose their money quickly, and then what? No aliyah?
A million Jews in Yehuda and Shomron and another million in Yerushalayim would stop the "piece process" cold.
For those interested, you can hear Charlie Shrem being interviewed about his text book here.
Also, thanks to Elka for her email and comments to me, very enlightening, and good advice to make aliyah NOW.