In the Gaza Strip, where children are taught arithmetic by counting grenades and machine guns, a group of students appeared in video practicing for the abduction of Israeli soldiers. Wearing military fatigues and brandishing toy weapons, the boys and girls were organized by the Islamic Association in Khan Yunis.

While there is no accompanying audio, the video vividly portrays children being taught combat moves and how to train their weapons on their enemy. In one scene, a little boy is seen cowering on the floor wearing a helmet emblazoned with an Israeli flag. His hands are tied behind his back as two girls aim their toy rifles at his head.

In Palestinian held territories, children are taught to pester and verbally assault Israeli soldiers, border guards, and police. With obscene language, girls and boys seek to get a reaction from young Israeli recruits at border crossings and checkpoints in the hope of seeing it recorded in news videos. In at least one instance, a boy and his father were under fire from fellow Palestinians during a protest against Israel. The shooting incident was blamed on Israeli security forces.

Another video, in the style of MTV, aired sectarian hatred on television while calling on Muslims to sacrifice themselves in the cause of destroying the state of Israel. Singing a paean to Hamas suicide bomber Ayyash, a singer in the video sings: "Strap on an explosive belt...O martyrdom seeker, respond to Al-Aqsa's call...Let fire burn them, turn them into body parts, roast them."

Calling on Allah to bless him, the singer chants praises that the bombmaker left “bomb fragments” in the bodies of his victims. “You did not allow any bus on the street without its roof flying into the sky. The roof along with body parts.” The lyrics call for listeners to bring down Israeli premier Benjamin Netanyahu and to “terrorize” the Israeli people...Have no mercy on the settlers. Onward, send them to hell.”

”O martyrdom seeker, Al-Aqsa has called you. Oh, my son, make haste to martyrdom. Oh, you who is willing to blow himself up and protect the pure ground of the Al-Aqsa mosque.” It goes on to say, “O martyrdom seeker, let them weep. Let fire burn them, turn them into body parts, roast them.” Calling on viewers to commit mass murder, a singer chants: “You are the voice of pride among us."



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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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