Thursday, September 22, 2016

Hanan Al-Hroub and the Evaporation of an Ethical Dilemma

Michael Lumish

{Also published at Jews Down Under.}

hanan-635x357 Writing for the conservative Breitbart website, Joel B. Pollack tells us:

Hanan an-Hroub is scheduled to speak at a Clinton Global Initiative event in New York after winning a $1 million teaching award from another charity that donates to the Clinton Foundation. Her husband, Omar al-Hroub, spent 10 years in an Israeli prison for his role in a 1980 bombing that killed six Israelis.

For those willing to take a few moments to think about it, the Hanan Al-Hroub story is ethically complex and, therefore, very interesting.

As with any stories that emphasize Palestinian-Arab terrorism, the mainstream left is reluctant to touch it. The Wall Street Journal has an article behind a wall requiring registration, but Breitbart has a a critical piece and the Times of Israel has a laudatory one.

Trump, needless to say, knows an opportunity to smack around Hillary when he sees one.

Jason Miller, Senior Communications Advisor for the Trump campaign claims that:
Today’s report that the Clinton Foundation is feting the wife of a Palestinian man convicted of helping bomb innocent Israeli citizens is deeply disturbing, especially in the wake of this weekend’s attacks. The decision to honor the wife of a terrorist by Hillary Clinton’s foundation shows a complete lack of judgment and a callousness that should disqualify her from holding the presidency.
Raj Shah, ​deputy ​communications director of the Republican National Committee, says:
In the wake of this weekend’s attacks, granting a platform to the spouse of a terrorist bomb-maker just miles away from where explosives were detonated days ago is an insult to the victims and makes a mockery of the Clinton Foundation.
My initial gut-reaction to this story was nausea at Clinton's apparent disdain for the victims of terrorism.

My second reaction was to wonder how dumb must the Clinton people be to publicly honor a figure so closely connected to terrorism directly after still more Jihadi attacks in the United States?

But then, of course, the question becomes, "Just who the hell is this woman?"

According to the Clinton Foundation website:
Winner of the 2016 Global Teacher Prize, an initiative of the Varkey Foundation, Hanan Al Hroub grew up in the Palestinian refugee camp, Bethlehem, where she was regularly exposed to acts of violence. She went into primary education after her children were left deeply traumatized by a shooting incident they witnessed on their way home from school. Her experiences in meetings and consultations to discuss her children’s behavior, development and academic performance in the years that followed led Al Hroub to try to help others who, having grown up in similar circumstances, require special handling at school. With so many troubled children in the region, Palestinian classrooms can be tense environments. Al Hroub embraces the slogan “No to Violence” and uses a specialized teaching approach she developed herself. Al Hroub has shared her perspective at conferences, meetings and teacher training seminars.
Omitted is any reference to her bomb-making husband and the six people he killed in 1980.

The Wall Street Journal notes:
Omar al-Hroub was convicted on charges that he was an accomplice in a deadly bombing attack in Hebron that killed Israelis walking home from Friday night Sabbath prayers. According to an Associated Press account at the time, Omar al-Hroub was a chemist who provided chemicals needed for making the bombs.
This is damning material and, even if Hanan Al-Hroub were some Palestinian-Arab "Mother Theresa," it very much calls into question Hillary Clinton's capacity for sound judgment.

Nonetheless, we cannot discount the possibility that Al-Hroub is entirely innocent of any involvement in her husband's former Jew Killing Hobby or that her work as a teacher since then is not worth every penny of that one million dollars.

According to "JTA" in the Times of Israel:
Al-Hroub developed techniques to calm children after they witness violence after her own children witnessed Israeli troops shoot and wound their father during the first Palestinian intifada.

The techniques reportedly reduce tendencies to violence among Palestinians. In March, she won the Britain-based Varkey Foundation’s $1 million Global Teacher Prize. Among those congratulating her were Pope Francis, Vice President Joe Biden, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Britain’s Prince William.
The Varkey Foundation tells us that:
Hanan embraces the slogan ‘No to Violence’ and uses a specialist approach she developed herself, detailed in her book, ‘We Play and Learn’. She focuses on developing trusting, respectful, honest and affectionate relationships with her students and emphasises the importance of literacy. She encourages her students to work together, pays close attention to individual needs and rewards positive behaviour. Her approach has led to a decline in violent behaviour in schools where this is usually a frequent occurrence; she has inspired her colleagues to review the way they teach, their classroom management strategies and the sanctions they use. 
I don't know that encouraging cooperation among students or rewarding positive behavior - while wearing a clown's wig and red nose - represents some sort-of pedagogical revolution worth a million bucks, but it definitely beats a kick in the head.

What is troubling, however, is the manner in which the media, and Al-Hroub, herself, imply Jewish-Israeli guilt for the violence created by ongoing Palestinian-Arab theocratically-inspired aggression against Jews living on ancestral Jewish land.

For example, The Guardian, in a piece from last March concerning the original announcement of the award, claims in a context-free manner:
In 2000, when her youngest was established at school, Hroub resumed her education part-time at Al-Quds University. Within months, her husband, Omar, and two of her daughters were shot at by Israeli soldiers at a checkpoint near Bethlehem. Omar was injured in the shoulder and the girls were traumatised.
I do not doubt it for one moment.

The year 2000 was the first year of Intifada Number Two, the Al-Aqsa Intifada, when Palestinian-Arabs went berserk because Ariel Sharon had the audacity to take a stroll on the Temple Mount.

The Guardian story, of course, also leaves out Omar's history of terrorism.

In conclusion, although I was willing to give Clinton and Al-Hroub the benefit of the doubt, when I see the way that certain media outlets, such as the Guardian, use this story to contrast alleged Palestinian-Arab sweetness and goodness versus Jewish-Israeli barbarism, the ethical dilemma melts away into the aether and all that I am left with is disgust.

For all I know, Hanan Al-Hroub is a terrific woman and a wonderful teacher worth every penny of that million dollars, but when these stories are used in a propagandistic manner to contrast bunny-like Arabs in conflict with Doberman-like Jews, it tells me that there is something more going on here than merely honoring a teacher.


  1. Propagandistic? Mike, propaganda is so yesterday. It's a narrative. You can challenge propaganda, but you can't challenge a narrative, because...well, I don't know why, but you just can't.

    1. I despise all this jibber-jabber concerning narratives.

      The Jews do not have a "narrative."

      We have a history as a people.

      The Palestinian-Arabs have very little in the way of history so, instead, they've created a "narrative."

      This is why the Palestinian-Arab historical museum is so much fun.

      They have nothing to put in it!

    2. I remember few years ago there was an exhibition of Dead Sea Scrolls in Canada, and palestinians claimed Israel stole it from them.

    3. The Palestinian-Arab MO is cultural-identity theft.

    4. "Narrative," is a recent concoction by the so called new historians. It's a post modern sham designed to invent whatever truth one wishes. Obviously tied to the Nazi big lie and soviet propaganda. No wonder the Fakestinians and their fellow travelers find it so useful. Those of us of a certain age see through it whereas more modern folk are too brainwashed by its pervasiveness.

  2. Too bad her techniques didn't work with her killer husband.

  3. I will laugh and laugh at the first Jewish American who voted for Hillary when they utter the first peep of displeasure when the pogroms come.