Letter to Jerusalem Post: Janine Zacharia's story "Renaming after terrorist
almost costs school US funding" (Aug.11) is a bit faulty
Sunday, August 11, 2002 9:12 PM
Janine Zacharia's story "Renaming after terrorist almost costs school US
funding" (Aug.11) is a bit faulty.
It was not the school that renamed itself. The change from Haji Issa, donor
of the original structure, to Dalal Al Moghrabi, the woman terrorist who
in 1978 participated in the murder of 36 Israelis and American nature
photographer Gail Raban, was ordered by the Palestinian Ministry of
Education, clearly reflecting the Palestinian Authority's ennoblement of
The expansion of the school is being financed by USAID through
ANERA(American Near East Refugee Aid), a non-government organization . When
USAID became aware of the name change, it complained to ANERA. It contacted
the Palestinian Ministry of Education which immediately committed itself, in
writing, to restore the original name.
ANERA's e-mail letter to the chief of USAID's Tel Aviv office reported
without comment that;" ... the Ministry of Education decided to change the
name to Dalal Al Moghrabi school simply because they wanted to give a
woman's name to a girls' school."
Choosing a terrorist's name is consistent with the Palestinian practice of
celebrating terrorist murders of Israelis. Recently, Palestinians joyously
celebrated the disastrous Hebrew University cafeteria bombing with street
dancing, showers of sweets for children and traditional random gunfire. Had
the name change been retained, the school would have become a shrine to
terrorism supportive of the PA's official anti-Israel textbooks which
inculcate the doctrine that Israel has no right to exist. Textbooks which
will no doubt continue to be used in this institution.
ANERA raised no question in transmitting the funding. Besides raising funds
on its own, ANERA, established in 1968, supervises USAID funding for
projects in Gaza and the West Bank .
ANERA has an advocacy program consistently supportive of PA positions and
deeply negative towards Israel. Its website's list of NGOs is replete with
anti- Israel organizations such as the Council for the National Interest
(CNI) which seeks to have US aid to Israel reduced. ANERA is so cozy with
the present Palestinian structure that USAID should evaluate their
relationship. It is time for new eyes and hands in the reformation of Gaza
and the West Bank.
Dr. Joseph Lerner
Co-Director IMRA-Independent Media Review & Analysis