Wednesday, September 29, 2004

The Schools Are Open...

Yes, George, the schools are open in Iraq - when there hasn't been a car bomb nearby. But what are they teaching in those schools? What are the students learning?

Under Saddam, Beytool's school was only allowed to teach the strict, state-approved curriculum. But now, it's a private school and they are free to teach whatever they like. And in a sign of the changing times here, the focus is now overwhelmingly on Islamic education. Instead of teaching the alphabet, the goal in Beytool's class is to memorize 28 basic verses from the Koran, and learn how to wash before prayers.

The school's director says: "the most important thing for a child to know is religion."

At universities too, religious hard-liners are taking hold — at Baghdad's Mustansiriya, self-appointed morality police now guard the campus gate. They recently sent a grad student away because she was wearing pants.
Because the country is so anarchic, the government has tenuous control - at best - over what's going on in schools. BushCo. and their puppet in Baghdad are ensuring that the next generation of poorly educated, non-working, hopeless terrorist recruits are being inculcated in fundamentalist, radical Islam.

"What we risk having 10 or 15 years down the line is an absence of lawyers, an absence of technicians, doctors, engineers who are able to push the country forward," says Middle East analyst Turi Munthe.
You can thank them on November 2.