A key component of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process was the need for both sides to educate their people for peace and coexistence. The translation of a Palestinian high school graduation ceremony last week again highlighted that the Palestinian Authority has done just the opposite.
The joint graduation ceremony was sponsored and hosted by Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah movement. A banner hanging over the stage read: "Tribute to high school graduates under the auspices of Mahmoud Abbas, Fatah"
At one point, a number of students participated in reading different parts of a speech hailing the violent nationalism they had been taught in school and thanking Fatah for making that education possible.
Male graduate: "In the name of the Shahids (Martyrs), in the name of the prisoners, in the name of the stone and the rifle."
Female graduate: "In the name of Fatah, the school that taught us the meaning of nationalism."
Male graduate: "In the name of Palestine: Haifa, Acre, Jaffa, and our Arab Jerusalem."
Female graduate: "In the name of Palestine: Gaza, the West Bank and the flag of national unity."
Male graduate: "Fatah is [still] with the rifle. And our rifles are not rusty even if they have fired thousands of bullets."
Translation of the graduation, which was broadcast on Palestinian Authority-controlled TV, was provided by Palestinian Media Watch.