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Yehuda Bauer on Genocide Education

Yehuda Bauer, Professor, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

I'm not sure that mandatory courses in any subject are better than voluntary ones. But certainly education of young people is a prerequisite for any movement forward, because those are the people who will inherit the earth. And unless they are aware of the dangers, they will not fight them. So, they have to be educated.

See, in our education -- when I say "our," it means what we call the civilized world -- we have hidden this. We didn't teach about mass murder and danger of humans. We talked about great politicians and great leaders, and this one won this war and this one won the other war, when war means killing. We never talked about that. When I was at school, we were told about Napoleon winning certain battles. We were never told that there were soldiers involved who died or were maimed.

And I think that this whole dark side of humanity is unconsciously totally repressed in education. And this has to be brought out -- not because we want to teach horror stories, but simply because we want to tell children, "Look, this could happen. Try to prevent it."