Avid Editor's Insights

New Anti-Semitic Textbook

Posted by avideditor on October 28, 2009

It seems more lies and libels against the jews are put into a new textbook.

A new textbook introduced into a Sydney, Australia school charges that “much modern conflict in the world is related to the reactions of other groups to the Jewish people.” The author, Christopher Hartney of the University of Sydney, also wrote that polygamy is “commonly practiced in the Jewish State.”

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One Response to “New Anti-Semitic Textbook”

  1. Gramfan said

    This was mentioned on Andrew Bolt’s ‘blog a few days ago and it has been taken care of.Got this in an email:

    “The letter below is self-explanatory and was sent to teachers and teacher organisations across NSW. Do click on the SMH story link before reading it to the end.

    The outcome by 4pm was that the publishers have withdrawn the offending text from sale and will be meeting with us again next week to begin the process of rewriting.

    Dear friends,

    You may have seen this article in today’s Sydney Morning Herald. http://www.smh.com.au/national/school-textbook-fuels-anti-semitism-20091026-hgpp.html It refers to the Cambridge Studies of Religion Stage 6 textbook, which is in wide use across NSW and which many of you and your colleagues may be using.

    If you are using it to teach Judaism, teachers and students will be misinformed and also exposed to falsehoods about Judaism and the Jewish peope that go beyond mistakes, into the realm of racial vilification. Our expert consultants have marked up a copy of the Judaism chapter and a significant percentage needs revision, as the chapter is also replete with inaccuracies, spelling mistakes, inappropriate photographs and poor editing.

    Four examples of serious concern:

    1. “Much modern conflict in the world is related to the reactions of other groups to the Jewish people.” This statement is racial vilification.

    2. Passover “involves slaughtering lambs, smearing the lintel on the front door with blood and eating unleavened breads for seven days”. This statement is false and damaging.

    3. “Polygamy is widely practised in Israel.” This statement is false and damaging.

    4. “The tendency for Jews to choose sophisticated professions such as law, medicine and scholarship is closely connected to Jewish family togetherness.” This is an absurd non-sequitur.

    We have met with the contributing editor and requested that the textbook be immediately withdrawn, given

    – the implications of the dissemination of false and inaccurate content for schools, teachers and students using this textbook

    – the ramifications for the Jewish community – including the fact that some of the statements in the textbook will disseminate inaccurate myths about Judaism and the Jewish people and therby fuel antisemitic sentiment

    Given the gravity of the situation, we felt it imperative to inform you directly.

    The NSW Jewish Board of Deputies is able to provide reliable resources from a range of educational bodies in our community to support your teaching of Judaism. Please don’t hesitate to contact me or to direct others to contact me if I can be of assistance.

    Yours sincerely,


    Lynda Ben-Menashe

    Education Manager, NSW Jewish Board of Deputies”


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