An Ontario Grade 6 textbook implies that Israel is a country that uses children as “soldiers and spies”, placing the Jewish State alongside human rights violator countries: Afghanistan, Colombia, Iraq, Libya, and Yemen.
The book, Canada and the Global Community, published by Nelson Education Ltd., is used in 800 elementary schools across Ontario, according to B’nai Brith Canada.
Nelson president and CEO Steve Brown said the book did not say that Israel employs child soldiers…“It’s actually an ambiguous statement,” he said, adding, however, that he “absolutely understands the uproar.”..
In an undated letter to schools, Nelson called the statement about Israel “potentially confusing” when not used in conjunction with accompanying teachers’ resource material, in which the reference was “further explained and clarified.”
The publisher noted that the resource material suggested teachers “point out that in the list of countries where child soldiers have been used, not all sides in all of these countries have used child soldiers. For example, only people above the age of 18 serve in the Israeli army.”
Nelson spokesperson Ryan Bird the textbook “was never intended to convey that Israel had used child soldiers, but that other groups had used child soldiers in Israel.”CJNews
Palestinians is the group not listed that uses children soldiers in Israel.
That raised the ire of the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies (FSWC) and B’nai Brith Canada.
“The distribution of this textbook will surely have negative ramifications on Jewish students across the province if their peers were to, using its contents, charge Israel (with) kidnapping child soldiers,” B’nai Brith said in a statement.
Ontario’s education ministry “has an obligation to not only correct these errors but to teach the reality of the situation – that it is Palestinian leaders who use child soldiers,” B’nai Brith added. CJNews
The Ministry of Education takes the correctness and accuracy of information provided in learning resources very seriously. We continue to work collaboratively with [publisher] Nelson Education. The publisher is taking steps to correct the error including destroying the current inventory of the textbook, reprinting the error page on the new stock for the upcoming school year, notifying schools about the situation and is in the process of sending a replacement sticker (to cover the error on the page in the textbook).
According to the statement, “The replacement sticker blocks the old text and replaces it with new revised text that excludes Israel from the list of the mentioned countries. Algemeiner