"Neutral" Timeline of the Arab-Israeli Conflict

D. POV Timeline

The Timeline is discussed in Section D the Verity Education Report. Although presented as an ostensibly 'neutral' review of the history of Israel, with contrasting timelines for Israelis and Palestinians (the role of Arab states such as Syria, Jordan, Egypt, etc. in carrying out terror attacks and offensive wars receives little mention), the Timeline was actually written under the supervision of an avowed anti-Israel advocate. The Verity Educate Report devotes 12 pages to correcting inaccuracy and bias in the first 8 pages (of the 10-page summary) alone. The Timeline also omits significant facts that support the Israeli version of events.

For example, the Timeline entirely skips the years 1936 through 1947, during which Arab riots, the Holocaust, the internment of Jewish refugees in Cyprus, and other important events occurred. The omission of these years renders the Timeline useless in any attempt to gain a full understanding of the history of Israel or the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Newton high school students have been using the Timeline (here and below), titled "History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict", for several years up to and including the present.

The Timeline was prepared by a graduate student under the supervision of an avowedly anti-Israel professor. It purports to be a "neutral" history of the Arab-Israeli conflict and is presented as such to students. Not only is the Timeline inherently biased against Israel and Jews, it misrepresents key historical facts, going so far as to invert the meaning of a U.N. resolution by claiming it means the opposite of what it actually says.

The Verity Educate Report has an extensive analysis of the Timeline; the Committee for Accurate Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA) and StandWithUs have also prepared analyses (see links).

If this sounds like a lot of writing about one timeline, it's because there are so many errors that it is difficult to fit them all into a single publication of readable length.

Incredibly, the Timeline was used as an 'educational' resource for a film, Promises, shown on PBS. Allegedly a 'neutral' depiction of Israeli and Palestinian children living in or near Jerusalem, the film is so overtly biased against Israel (as well as exhibiting an astonishing callousness towards the children it depicts) that it accepts without comment a child's stated desire to kill herself in a suicide attack. The film's makers completely ignore this incredible statement, making no attempt to follow up with additional questions, or apparently to inform the child's parents, teachers, or other community members that this young girl has admitted she wants to kill herself and others. The statement is accepted without comment as if it were an ordinary goal similar to those of other children. (None of the other Palestinian children exhibits any interest in destroying lives, property, or themselves).

Similarly, terrorism, including the shocking statement above by a young girl, Sanabel, that her goal is to murder Jews and herself, is ignored or excused. The film describes Sanabel's father as a journalist and important figure in the organization Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a terror group responsible for numerous suicide bombings and airplane hijackings. Viewers are told that he is imprisoned in Israel for his 'political views'. There is no mention of the fact that Israel, in accordance with other Western nations, does not jail people for their views - several Arab Members of Parliament are outspoken about their desire that Israel cease to exist - however, individuals are jailed for planning or engaging in acts of violence. Even after Sanabel states that she wants to becomem a suicide bomber, it does not appear that anyone speaks with her or questions her about the impetus behind her goal, and the subject is never mentioned again. The lack of any concern for a child whose stated goal is to murder Jews, and her own self, is extremely disturbing.

The film also discusses the effects on children living in 'refugee camps' (which, when shown, appear to be a typical urban area) without explaining that residents remain there as part of a deliberate policy not to re-home the 250,000-500,000 Arabs displaced in the Arab-Israeli was of 1947-1949 - a policy which has been existence for the past 70 years. By contrast, the 800,000 Jews who fled or were forced from their homes during the same time period were welcomed into Israel; most of the refugees were resettled within a few years of immigration.

The notations on the Timeline indicate it is used in at least one Newton 10th grade Honors History class. Given that teachers commonly share material (in this case, unvetted and grossly inaccurate material), it is likely used in other classes as well.