“ARABIC” SCHOOL?

Catalyst October Issue 2007, Front Page

On September 4, Bill Donohue spoke at a press conference in New York City registering his misgivings over a new publicly funded “Arabic” school that opened in Brooklyn. The rally was held on the steps of City Hall and was attended by prominent Catholic and Jewish leaders.

The reason for using quotation marks to describe the school is because it is uncertain whether this isn’t an Islamist school. Throughout the summer, the Catholic League tried in vain to obtain a copy of the curriculum and was stonewalled even on learning what textbooks would be used. We also raised serious questions regarding the imams who were slated to act as advisors to Khalil Gibran International Academy.

Our interest peaked when it was reported that the principal of the school refused to condemn pro-terrorist T-shirts that her friends were hawking. On the front of the shirts it said, “NYC Intifada;” the term Intifada was used to describe Palestinian terrorist attacks on Israeli Jews. Disingenuously, the principal first tried to say that the original meaning of the word refers to “throwing off oppression.” When everyone knew that the T-shirt was conveying the conventional terrorist meaning, the principal was forced to distance herself from it. She then resigned.

New York City bars the display of nativity scenes but allows the Islamic crescent and star. It also opposes school vouchers. But it has money for an “Arabic” school that is at the very least suspect. Thus, the protest.


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Written by Bill