ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 147

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Gaza preschoolers stage mock liberation of ‘Palestinian land’

Children armed with prop guns and dressed in military garb trample over Israeli flag and perform military exercises at ceremony, as parents clap

Michael Horovitz is a breaking news editor at The Times of Israel

A Gazan preschooler stomps on an Israeli flag at a graduation ceremony, at the Young Deer Kindergarten in Beit Hanoun, in footage posted from May 24 - May 27, 2023. (MEMRI screenshot)
A Gazan preschooler stomps on an Israeli flag at a graduation ceremony, at the Young Deer Kindergarten in Beit Hanoun, in footage posted from May 24 - May 27, 2023. (MEMRI screenshot)

Children at a Gazan preschool recently performed a mock liberation of Palestine at their graduation ceremony, footage showed.

The preschoolers, dressed up in army uniforms and armed with prop guns, performed military-style drills and trampled the Israeli flag, during the event at the Young Deer Kindergarten in Beit Hanoun.

They waved Palestinian flags in celebration, after a fake newscaster announced that a “properly executed surprise attack” resulted in the liberation of “all the Palestinian land” and the “surrender of the last Israeli soldier.”

Parents at the event watched the kids and clapped along to the music.

The videos were posted on the preschool’s Facebook page on May 24-27. They were translated and compiled by The Middle East Media Research Institute. The group has reported on similar ceremonies at Gaza kindergartens in the past.

The preschoolers also commemorated the establishment of the Palestinian Liberation Organization by Yasser Arafat and stomped to lyrics bashing former-US president Donald Trump’s peace plan — the so-called “Deal of the Century.”

“We will send this deal and whoever [signs] it to the garbage dump. We are trampling it underfoot,” a man sings. “If words don’t help, we shall erase it with machine guns.”

The Trump plan, unveiled in 2020 and never advanced, envisioned the creation of a Palestinian state in about 70 percent of the West Bank, a small handful of neighborhoods in East Jerusalem, most of the Gaza Strip, and some areas of southern Israel — if the Palestinians recognized Israel as a Jewish state, disarmed Hamas and other terror groups in the Gaza Strip, and fulfilled other conditions.

The plan also envisioned Israel annexing settlements, granting the Jewish state sovereignty over the Jordan Valley and overriding security control west of the Jordan River, and barring Palestinian refugees from settling in Israel.

The graduation ceremony came after Israel earlier in the month launched Operation Shield and Arrow, a five-day campaign against the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terror group in the Strip.

The fighting began after the death in Israeli custody of a hunger-striking alleged Islamic Jihad terrorist a week earlier, after which the terror group fired over 100 projectiles at Israel.

Israeli air strikes killed six top members of the Islamic Jihad terror group, and more than a dozen other alleged terror group members, among 33 Gaza fatalities.

PIJ fired over 1,600 projectiles at Israel, and Israel said that at least four of the Gaza civilian fatalities were likely killed by failed rockets. Two people were killed in Israel — an elderly Israeli woman in her home in Rehovot and a Gazan worker.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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