Teachers Rip UK Iraq Lessons as 'Propaganda'

School proposal ignores casualties, 'rewrites history'
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 14, 2008 8:57 AM CDT
Britain's Prime Minister Gordon Brown attempts to help 13-year-old Natasha Varshani with her mathematics classwork during a visit to a school in London, Tuesday July 10, 2007.   (AP Photo/Dylan Martinez, pool)
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(Newser) – On the fifth anniversary of the invasion of Iraq, a row has erupted in Britain over a controversial school lesson plan about the conflict drawn up by the country's defense ministry. The National Union of Teachers is up in arms over the proposal and is threatening a boycott over what it calls a "propaganda" exercise. The lesson plan highlights the reconstruction effort in Iraq but makes no mention of civilian casualties, writes the Independent.

Under the plan, students would be taught that the invasion was "necessary to allow the opportunity to remove Saddam Hussein"—but the lack of a Security Council resolution is not discussed. It also reiterates the now-debunked claim that Saddam possessed weapons of mass destruction. The ministry of defense said the program is a "completely voluntary" lesson plan and that it offered to let an anti-war organization collaborate on the design, but it refused.