Diplomacy

MK Oren Praises Morocco for Introducing Holocaust Education to Fight Anti-Semitism

The decision of Morocco’s King Mohammad VI to incorporate Holocaust education in the nation’s high-school curriculum has drawn praise from Israeli MK Michael Oren, The Jerusalem Post reported Friday.

A Moroccan news site, Le Desk, reported that the king’s decision was initially publicized at a high-level meeting on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly last week by Morocco’s Education Minister Said Amzazi.

The message from Mohammad VI was that anti-Semitism it the “antonym of freedom of expression.” The king elaborated that anti-Semitism “manifests the negation of the other and is an admission of failure, insufficiency and inability to coexist.”

“The battle against this plague can not be handled carelessly,” Mohammad VI’s message continued. “[The battle] is fought neither with the military nor with money, it above all depends on education and culture.” He added, “This battle has a name: education. And in the interest of our children, it is important for us to win it because they will be the beneficiaries and our ambassadors in the future.”

Oren praised the move, writing that the king “sent a profound moral message to the world.” He added, “Anti Semitism & Holocaust denial is rising in the West, the leader of a proud Arab country is introducing Holocaust education into Moroccan schools with the goal of fighting anti-Semitism. There is indeed hope.”

According to Le Desk, in 2008, Morocco acknowledged the need to teach Moroccan Jewish history and Holocaust education in its schools. However, the initiative did not get implemented immediately.

Two years ago, Archives of Morocco and the Holocaust Memorial Center in France agreed to cooperate “on all topics related to the history of Jews and Judaism in countries of North Africa, in research and exchange of archives and cultural and scientific events.” And last year, Morocco came to an agreement with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum to teach about the Holocaust and fight intolerance.

In April of this year, Moroccan Princess Lalla Joumala Alaoui sent a letter to the Moroccan Jewish community in New York acknowledging her nation’s Jewish history.

“Morocco’s Jewish heritage continues to be part and parcel of our lives and who we are. His Majesty King Mohammed VI is committed to follow in the footsteps of his forefathers and spares no effort in the preservation of this shared heritage,” the princess’s letter said.

“It is thus a great source of great pride and joy to witness the upholding of Moroccan Jewish traditions beyond our borders.”

[Photo: africanews / YouTube ]