Love and Jihad in Kindergarten

Have a good look at the two pictures below. The juxtaposition speaks a million words. The first is a picture from my daughter’s nursery school graduation in Tel Aviv today. It is a typical Israeli nursery school. In the background is a mural depicting children of various cultures. The Hebrew caption reads: “Children all around the world hold hands.” My daughter and her friends are holding traditional Arab drums called Darbuka and demonstrating how they learned to count in Arabic. We are educating our children to the core values of freedom, diversity, pluralism, love, and mutual respect.


The second picture is from a kindergarten play in Gaza. Two boys point guns at the head of a third child who kneels on the ground, his hat adorned with a blue and white Star of David. Tragically, this is a typical Palestinian elementary school. They are teaching their children to hate and to kill.


My late father taught me that every child is a precious miracle; a miracle that should be nurtured, not poisoned. So long as radical Islamists teach their children to hate and to kill, terror will continue to spread throughout the Western world.

Have a look again at the mural on the wall in my daughter’s school: you will notice iconic images of London, Paris, New York, Rome and Mumbai. For us, these are centers of culture and history. For the ISIS, Al Qaida, Boko Haram, Hezbollah, Hamas and all other Jihadists, these are targets.

If we want to stop the terror, we must demand that all of our Muslim brothers teach their children the core values of freedom, diversity, pluralism, love, and mutual respect. And we must hold accountable those who fail to do so.

About the Author
Micah Lakin Avni is the founder and CEO of Peninsula Group, a publicly-traded Israeli commercial finance institution. He also serves as the chairman of the Israel Association of Credit Companies. After his father, Richard Lakin, was brutally murdered by terrorists in October 2015, Micah began working tirelessly to rid social media of incitement to terror. Micah serves in a volunteer capacity as the chairman of "Concert – Together for Israel" (previously known as “Kela Shlomo”), a long-term partnership between the State of Israel and the global pro-Israel leadership to facilitate ongoing strategic cooperation, counter the global Israel delegitimization movement and improve Israel's positive image and standing in world public opinion. Micah lives in Tel Aviv with his wife and four children.