At age 12, Dor Shachar ran away from Gaza to live in Israel. What transpired was a journey that exposed a deep divide.
Dor Shachar grew up as Aiman Abu Suboh in a Muslim family of five in the Gaza Strip city of Khan Yunis. At age 7, he was taught in school that he had to kill Jews. At the age of 12-and-a-half, he ran away from home and lived on a construction site in Israel. In an interview with The Epoch Times in Israel, Mr. Shachar tells his story. The interview has been edited for clarity and brevity.
Dor Shachar: “When I started school, in first grade, for about a month, they taught us to write letters in Arabic and read. After a month, they began teaching us to kill Jews. They told us at school, ‘It’s a great commandment to kill Jews because they took your land, and you will fight until the last drop of blood to regain the land.’ They explained to us that the land includes Jaffa, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, the entire country of Israel, basically.
“I knew Jews who came to the market [in Khan Yunis] to shop. It was a time when there was no intifada, nothing; it was absolute quiet.
“They told us in school that Jews have three legs, that they kill children, women, men, and the elderly. That once they were Muslims, but they turned into Jewish infidels, and the biggest commandment is to kill Jews. All the students in the class had to say, ‘In the name of religion, in the name of God, in the name of Mohammed of Islam – kill Jews.’
“I refused to accept this. All the kids in the class say, ‘Itbah al-yahud’ or ‘slaughter the Jews.’ I asked the teacher to go to the restroom to wash my face because I really didn’t feel well, and I just wanted to get out of that place. In response, he slapped me and took me to the principal’s room, where he whispered something in his ear about me. The principal asked me to stand facing the wall and hit me on the back with a rubber hose. Then he told me to ask my dad to come with me to school the next day.
“The next day, my dad came to school for a meeting with the principal. After about 10 minutes, my dad entered the classroom. He started hitting me and said, ‘Yes! We need to kill Jews.’
“My dad worked in Israel for 27 years. He made money, bought clothes, bought gifts—and he supported killing Jews.”
Reporter: In 1987, at the age of 12-and-a-half, you traveled to Israel with your father?
By Oren Shalom