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Female engineers presented as role models for Palestinian women – an alternative to glorifying female terrorists?

Nan Jacques Zilberdik and Itamar Marcus  |
  • Are positive role models for Palestinian women emerging? Possibly — but this does not replace their fundamental role, which is supporting terrorists – because: “Behind every fighter, Martyr, or prisoner stands a lauded woman”

Palestinian Media Watch has documented that the PA regularly presents terrorists as role models. One of the most lauded role models in Palestinian society, and for women in particular, is terrorist murderer Dalal Mughrabi who led the killing of 37 Israelis, among them 12 children, in 1978.

Therefore it was positive sign when a column in the official PA daily highlighted the achievements of female students, stressing that their grade averages were higher than male students, adding that this refutes the male chauvinist view that women are less capable and should stay at home:

“The rate of female students who succeeded in the high school final exams and the fact that they lead their male counterparts in the first ten places (i.e., the ten students with the highest grade averages) debunked all the claims of those sounding the expression: ‘Women are mentally and religiously inferior,’ and those who say that a woman’s place is in the home.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 5, 2021]

And not only did the column say that female students did better in high school exams, but it singled out 3 female engineers:

“Alaa Abu Awad, Diala Andonia, Mais Bani Odeh, and Majd Al-Malki are four young engineers. As we see, three of the group are women. They participated in an international competition… and their project that deals with rehabilitating the Beirut Port won… They reached first place out of 24 projects from 13 states.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 5, 2021]

So are positive role models for Palestinian women going to replace terrorist role models?

Probably not. Unfortunately the last sentence in the article reverts back to the standard terror supporting PA ideology. Having given Palestinian women credit for their academic achievements, the columnist ends mentioning Palestinian women’s fundamental role as supporters of terrorists:

“behind every fighter, Martyr, or prisoner stands a lauded woman.”

Click to read more about women in Palestinian society.

The following is a longer excerpt of the column:

Excerpt of a column by Muwaffaq Matar, Fatah Revolutionary Council member and regular columnist for the official PA daily

Headline: “They are three fourths of the society”

“The [matriculation] exams are one of the forms of justice for students of the two genders, who are at the same level of studies and in the same age bracket… Therefore, we can view the [test] results as a criterion for gauging a person’s capabilities, whether they are male or female…

The rate of female students who succeeded in the high school final exams and the fact that they lead their male counterparts in the first ten places (i.e., the ten students with the highest grade averages) debunked all the claims of those sounding the expression: ‘Women are mentally and religiously inferior,’ and those who say that a woman’s place is in the home…

Alaa Abu Awad, Diala Andonia, Mais Bani Odeh, and Majd Al-Malki are four young engineers. As we see, three of the group are women. They participated in an international competition… and their project that deals with rehabilitating the Beirut Port won… They reached first place out of 24 projects from 13 states.

In terms of justice and equality, they are half of the society, but in terms of the general exam results, and specifically the national [results], they are three fourths of the society, for behind every fighter, Martyr, or prisoner stands a lauded woman.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Aug. 5, 2021]