By DANIEL PIPES, Ph.D.

A Message from God

God's passion for you, it's all about you!

God Warns America Index

President Bush, Iraq, Patriot Heroes & Troops

United Nations, Davis Recall Plot,  BlessedCause impacts in Politics & Whose groping Arnold Schwarzenegger?

Spirit of the antichrist alive and well in California schools

Sex Ed Porn in public school

News Coverage of Islam in Public Schools

Woe to ACLU and NEA Teachers Union

Christ Abandoned
Call to Sign Petition links

Free Original Christian Art, Music & Sculpture

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God blesses those who bless Israel

For Women Only

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Main Index

The Sign of Jonah explained,  God's message is heard

Islam Induction in our Public School Textbooks
actual words of Houghton Mifflin exposed and why

Quotes of Quran, Hadiths, Koran about infidels

Revelation 12

BlessedCause Footwashing Ministries

Christian Encouragement

Hearing God & Personally Witnessed  Miracles

Free Original Christian Art, Music & Sculpture

How Clinton, ACLU rigged Religious Guidelines & U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton

Thank you to all vets, our troops and military! God BLESS and lead you!

John Walker Lindh & California school proselytizing

Islam proselytized in Public School

Homeschool or Public School

Militant Terrorist Islam

God blesses those who bless Israel

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  February 11, 2002 -- COULD it be that an important textbook is proselytizing American 12-year-olds to convert to Islam? The book in question is "Across the Centuries" (Houghton Mifflin, 2nd edition, 1999), a 558-page history that covers the millennium and a half between the fall of Rome and the French Revolution. In the multicultural spirit, about half of its eight sections are devoted to the West, and the other four deal with Islam, Africa, Asian empires, and pre-Columbian America. "Across the Centuries" is a handsome artifact, well written, packed with original graphics, and generally achieving the publisher's goal that "students learn best when they are fascinated by what they are learning." At the same time, there is much in it one can argue with, such as its idiosyncratic coverage of subjects (sub-Saharan Africa gets four times more space than India?). But the really serious problem concerns the covert propagation of Islam, which takes four forms: * Apologetics: Everything Islamic is praised; every problem is swept under the rug. Students learn about Islam's "great cultural flowering," but nothing about the later centuries of statis and decline. They read repeatedly about the Muslims' broadmindedness (they "were extremely tolerant of those they conquered") but not a word about their violence (such as the massacres carried out by Muhammad's troops against the Jews of Banu Qurayza). * Distortion: Jihad, which means "sacred war," turns into a struggle mainly "to do one's best to resist temptation and overcome evil." Islam gives women "clear rights" not available in some other societies, such as the right to an education? This ignores the self-evident fact that Muslim women enjoy fewer rights than perhaps any other in the world. ("Across the Centuries" implicitly acknowledges this reality by blaming "oppressive local traditions" for their circumstances.) * Identification as Muslims: Homework assignments repeatedly involve mock-Muslim exercises. "Form small groups of students to build a miniature mosque." Or: "You leave your home in Alexandria for the pilgrimage to Mecca. . . . write a letter describing your route, the landscapes and peoples you see as you travel and any incidents that happen along the way. Describe what you see in Mecca." And then there is this shocker: "Assume you are a Muslim soldier on your way to conquer Syria in the year A.D. 635. Write three journal entries that reveal your thoughts about Islam, fighting in battle, or life in the desert." * Piety: The textbook endorses key articles of Islamic faith. It informs students as a historical fact that Ramadan is holy "because in this month Muhammad received his first message from Allah." It asserts that "the very first word the angel Gabriel spoke to Muhammad was 'Recite.' " It explains that Arabic lettering "was used to write down God's words as they had been given to Muhammad." And it declares that the architecture of a mosque in Spain allows Muslims "to feel Allah's invisible presence." Similarly, the founder of Islam is called "the prophet Muhammad," implying acceptance of his mission. (School textbooks scrupulously avoid the term Jesus Christ in favor of Jesus of Nazareth.) Learning about Islam is a wonderful thing; I personally have spent more than thirty years studying this rich subject. But students, especially in public schools, should approach Islam in a critical fashion - learning the bad as well as the good, the archaic as well as the modern. They should approach it from the outside, not as believers, precisely as they do with every other religion. Some parents have woken up to the textbook's problems. Jennifer Shroder of San Luis Obispo, Calif., publicly protested its "distinct bias toward Islam." But when she tried to remove her son Eric from the classroom using this book, the school refused her permission and she filed suit in protest a few weeks ago (with help from the Pacific Justice Institute). "Across the Centuries" involves a larger issue as well - the privileging of Islam in the United States. Is Islam to be treated like every other religion or does it enjoy a special status? The stakes go well beyond 7th-grade textbooks. The next edition of "Across the Centuries" should give a hint of what's in store. Readers may wish to send their opinions to Houghton Mifflin's editorial director for school social studies, Abigail Jungreis ( Daniel Pipes ( is director of the Philadelphia-based Middle East Forum.

Don't miss "Corruption in our children's textbooks."