Tower of David
Tower of David photo (file)

A recent interview of three Arab employees of Israeli institutions revealed that the men use their positions to slam Israel, against their employers' knowledge.  One has already been fired.

The interviews were broadcast recently on Palestinian TV, and exposed by Arab media watchdog Palestinian Media Watch (PMW)

According to the interviewees, they use their workplaces as soapboxes for pro-Arab, anti-Israel propaganda, rejecting their employers' historical curriculum and educational materials and teaching their own versions of the material.

Mustafa Othman, a teacher from the Beit Safafa neighborhood in Jerusalem told Fatah party's Al-Filistinia TV that he tells his Israeli Arab students that Israeli curriculum should be memorized for purposes of passing state exams, but is not really "information."  Othman teaches his students that "[Israel] conquered our land by armed force, robbed it, destroyed the houses, expelled its people from the cities and from the villages," according to a translation provided by PMW.

In November, two Arab employees of the Tower of David Museum of the History of Jerusalem – a history instructor and an Arabic-language tour guide – told an interviewer that they do not teach the "false" information provided for tourists by their employers, but rather invent stories to give credence to Arab versions of history.

History instructor Abir Zayyad told PA TV Host Houloud Al-Afifi that he does not believe David's Citadel should be used to discuss the importance of Kings David or Solomon (who he says never lived in Jerusalem) or the First Temple (of which he says there is no evidence).  Rather, he uses the topic to discuss the invasion of "Palestine" by the 12 tribes of Israel.

Zayyad said Israeli history  is a "creation of a historical right and a historical dimension, claiming they were here 3,000 years ago, and that they had buildings here…. as though they created the city of Jerusalem and created all of Palestine."

The Tower of David museum contains a courtyard with archeological findings dating back 2,700 years.  The museum's website says they are dedicated to informing visitors about the history of Jerusalem.

Rubin Abu Shamsiya, Arabic-language tour guide at the museum, said he does not believe the information provided by museum curators, and uses his own sources to comprise his tours.  "I do not rely exclusively on that which is written on the museum's walls and texts," Abu Shamsiya said.  "It is more important to me to convey the Arab point of view."

Upon learning of the practice of lying to tourists, the Tower of David museum fired Zayyad, and stated that the museum is looking into ways to ensure this does not happen again.