Manchester King David governors’ chair Joshua Rowe changed the programme for the high school’s prize day on Tuesday to show the 1,500 audience a high-tech presentation on the history of Israel’s conflicts.
Mr Rowe took the decision to counter the increasing number of pupils and parents questioning the morality of Israel’s Gaza campaign.
“There are certainly students asking questions,” he explained. “People are influenced by the media and parents can be somewhat apathetic. The battlefront is everywhere.
“In every school and on every campus Palestinian supporters are vociferous and active while Jewish students are asleep. We need to train our kids, get them involved and mobilise our community in active support of Israel in their workplace, unions — everywhere we go.”
A private meeting in January between Manchester Jewish leaders and Foreign Secretary David Miliband had been a wake-up call. According to Mr Rowe, the leaders concluded that “whether in the political or academic world, Israel has very few supporters. Prominent politicians believe Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians is a case of six of one and half-a-dozen of an-other.”
The leaders had thus resolved to step-up pro-Israel activity — and the restructured prize day programme was one example.