In 2002, the World Union of Jewish Students and the Jewish Agency for Israel published a handbook entitled Promoting Israel on Campus. It is a coaching manual for Jewish students worldwide, teaching them how to be advocates for Israel. The manual can be found HERE.
Sections of the manual include:
- Being Proactive and Promoting Israel
- Seven Basic Propaganda Devices
- Running a Campaign
- Organising a Demonstration
- Training and Development for Israel Activists
- Accusations and Rebuttals
The handbook provides interesting insights into how Israel manages propaganda and distorts reality. Consider these two examples on page 6, under the heading Agenda Setting:
“The person who sets the agenda will usually win the debate….It is much easier to get Palestinian activists defending Arafat against charges of being a corrupt terrorist than it is to explain that Ariel Sharon didn’t kill anybody at Sabra and Shatila (which of course he didn’t)”. (my emphasis).
“To understand the value of agenda setting, consider the 6-Day War of 1967. When the war was inevitable, Israel decided to seize the initiative through a pre-emptive strike”. (my emphasis).
Wiki informs us that in 1982 a UN Commission, chaired by Sean MacBride concluded that Israel bore responsibility for the Sabra and Shatila violence. In 1983, the Israeli Kahan Commission, appointed to investigate the incident, found that Israeli military personnel, aware that a massacre was in progress, had failed to take serious steps to stop it. Thus Israel was indirectly responsible. Ariel Sharon, then Defense Minister, bore personal responsibility, forcing him to resign.
In the second example, it is enough to quote Yitzhak Rabin, then Israeli Chief of Staff, later Prime Minister of Israel:
“I do not believe that Nasser wanted war, The two divisions which he sent into Sinai on 14 May (1967) would not have been enough to unleash an offensive against Israel. He knew it and we knew it.”
The handbook is littered with such distortions. So much for truth. Among other things, it coaches students in name-calling. These are recommendations from the handbook on repositioning Israel and its opponents:
Occupation becomes administration
Settlement becomes suburb, village or community
Zionism becomes Jewish nationalism
Jewish colonialism becomes Jewish movement for self-determination
Palestinian Israeli becomes Arab Israeli
Invasion becomes incursion or operation
Palestinian political organisations become terror organisations
Intifida becomes wave of violence; strategy of violence
Demonstration becomes riot or attack
Stone-throwing becomes rock-throwing
Freedom fighter becomes terrorist
Palestinian becomes Arab of Palestinian origin
Refugee camp becomes town
Children become youths
Can we believe that Ariel Sharon, personally responsible for 3,000 deaths in Sabra and Shatila, disagrees with this campaign of obfuscation, distortion and lies? For on 15 November 1998, to Agence France Presse, he said:
“It is the duty of Israeli leaders to explain to public opinion, clearly and courageously, a certain number of facts that are forgotten with time. The first of these is that there is no Zionism, colonialization, or Jewish State without the eviction of the Arabs and the expropriation of their lands”.