I have written previously about the Khalil Gibran International Academy, an Arabic-language public school in Brooklyn, which is set to open its doors for the first time in a couple of weeks. It has caused no end of controversy in the Big Apple, what with the occluded nature of its curriculum and the connections of some of its organizers to various Islamic terror groups.
The uproar over the “Intifada NYC” T-shirts forced the resignation last week of the school’s principal, Dhabah Almontaser. The Department of Education immediately appointed an interim principal, one with impeccable Multicultural credentials, who was obviously chosen to defuse the arguments of all the Islamophobes who drove out Ms. Almontaser.
But now the DOE’s choice has angered a different group of people; this time the honor of the Arab community is at stake. Here’s the story from today’s New York Post:
Principal Not Kosher: Muslim
The Department of Education “spit” in the face of Arabs with the appointment of a Jewish woman as principal of the city’s new Arabic-themed school, a Muslim activist said yesterday.
“It doesn’t make any sense,” Zein Rimawi said of the appointment of Danielle Salzberg.
“It’s like somebody spit in our face as Arabs,” said Rimawi, a founder of the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, and an organizer with the Arab Muslim American Federation.
“They didn’t hire an Arab principal [for] a Chinese school. It doesn’t make any sense.
“This is no respect to our community. Where is the respect?” he asked.
When Danielle Salzberg was appointed, she was obviously meant to be a “token Jew”, set in place to deflect criticism from the school’s curriculum and mission. Nothing could more clearly demonstrate that race is the primary issue for liberal Multiculturalists, since they assumed that we, the “racist” critics of Ms. Almontaser, were objecting only to her race and religion.
But now the DOE has to live with the blowback from their decision, and take heat for disrespecting the Arab community. The poor schlemiels just can’t win, can they?
Presumably the mau-mauing will continue until the authorities are cowed into submission, withdraw Ms. Salzberg, and appoint an ethnically correct replacement.
There is no shortage in New York City of what I call “suicide Jews”. In addition to Ms. Salzberg, among the organizers and in the Department of Education, running all the way up to the mayor, you will notice a number of Jewish names. I presume they are mostly well-intentioned old-fashioned liberals who really believe in Multiculturalism, and are willing to bend over backwards — if not prostrate themselves — to appease their Arab brothers.
It’s now clear why the Department of Education refused to release the text of Debbie Almontaser’s letter of resignation as principal of the nascent Khalil Gibran International Academy.
The letter turns out to have been an intemperate and thoroughly disingenuous broadside against “a small group of highly misguided individuals” out to get Almontaser “because of my religion.”
She doesn’t name names, but it’s no secret that this page has profound reservations about the Gibran Academy, to say nothing of Almontaser’s fitness to lead it — so we guess she was referring to us, among others.
So, let us note for the record: Now that the Department of Education has named one Danielle Salzberg, who is Jewish, to head Gibran in place of Almontaser, who is Muslim, we continue to question the efficacy of the academy.
That is to say, religion per se has nothing to do with it.
Our problem with Almontaser was her refusal to condemn, reflexively and unequivocally, the sale of T-shirts bearing the slogan “Intifada NYC,” which were being peddled by a group that shares office space with an organization on whose board she sits.
Guilt by association? Not at all.
Instead of acknowledging what “intifada” means to anyone who’s read newspapers for the past 10 years — terroristic assault and murder, undertaken by Palestinians against Jews in the Middle East — she pandered.
“Intifada,” in the original Arabic, means “shaking off,” she said. That, along with some other malarkey, added up to an unavoidable conclusion: Debbie Almontaser is an unfit custodian for young minds.
The school’s proponents thought that race and religion were the issues that motivated the criticism of KGIA. They were wrong, but race and religion certainly do motivate the school’s supporters.
Now that “inclusiveness” at KGIA has been exposed as the hypocritical balderdash that it always was, what will the suicide Jews do next?
More than anyone else, Jews should know what the word “intifada” means.
And the intifada in New York City is just getting started.
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