Washington, D.C. - A House committee today adopted a proposal by Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Sherman Oaks) encouraging the State Department to urge the Palestinian Authority to remove anti-Semitic statements from textbooks for Arab school children.
“A basic level of respect for all religions must form the foundation for building a peaceful future in the Middle East,” Sherman said.
The Palestinian Authority has improved textbooks, he said, but recent revisions still fail to acknowledge the existence of the State of Israel and do not even mention Jews in a discussion of religious tolerance. The Sherman Amendment to the State Department authorization bill links continued support for the Palestinian Authority to the removal of language in the textbooks that fosters anti-Semitism.
Sherman raised the issue directly with President Mahmoud Abbas when the Palestinian leader met last month with members of the International Relations Committee.
Another amendment the committee adopted would increase support for pro-democracy and human rights groups in rogue nations that support terrorists. “This is a common sense way to shine a light on efforts to promote democracy and human rights in some of the darkest corners of the world,” he said.
A third Sherman Amendment the committee adopted would require the Secretary of State to take stronger measures to block World Bank loans to the government of Iran. “If we are serious about convincing the Iranians to abandon their nuclear program, we should stop aid, trade and investment until they abandon the program,” he said.
Sherman also added language to the bill to promote dismantling a nuclear black market network headed by Pakistan’s former chief nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan. “This worldwide security threat must be thwarted,” the congressman said.