Israel was left off a map published by Collins Bartholomew, a subsidiary of publishing giant HarperCollins. "The country is not labelled on the map - bought by English-speaking schools in the majority-Muslim Gulf, while Gaza and Jordan are clearly marked," notes The Daily Mail. The publisher is based in Edinburgh, Scotland.
The atlas, distributed in English-speaking schools in the United Arab Emirates and neighboring countries, shows the West Bank next to Gaza but with Israel not labelled.
A report on December 31st by The Tablet, a weekly Catholic newspaper based in the UK, says that The Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales "accused HarperCollins of harming peace efforts in the Middle East through its production of atlases that omit Israel from their maps. Collins Middle East Atlases, which are sold to English-speaking schools in the Muslim-majority Gulf, depict Jordan and Syria extending all the way to the Mediterranean Sea."
Incredibly, Collins Bartholomew actually admitted to The Tablet that they bowed to "local preferences" by omitting Israel. In a region filled with enemies who have vowed to years to destroy the Jewish nation, inclusion of Israel on the map would have been "unacceptable" to customers in region.
The Tablet also reported that "customs officers in one Gulf nation" would only allow school atlases "to reach their intended recipient only once Israel had been struck out by hand."
To put it simply, Collins Bartholomew willingly published an inaccurate map for school children just to satisfy the political demands of paying customers. For the publisher, apparently, reality is less important than profit. Customs officers in Third World countries seem to be editors emeritus for Collins Bartholomew.
The story immediately received big media attention. Busted, embarrassed and called out for their act of deliberate regional revisionism, parent company HarperCollins apologized on Facebook: Commenters on Facebook, however, were not buying the apology.
The apology is hollow. After all, had there not been an outcry over this, Collins Bartholomew would still be happily selling their fantasy maps sans Israel. And commenters on Facebook were not buying it:
- "Did you actually think you could get away with such revisionism and that nobody would notice? I am certain you only regret that your reprehensible actions were exposed for what they are."
- "Apart from your appalling decision to facilitate racists, the fact remains the Rhodesia is Zimbabwe now, Ceylon is Sri Lanka and like it or not, Israel is the name of the country that you have deliberately ommited!"
- "Would you have made a map for the Gulf states with Al-Andalus replacing Spain and Portugal? If they want imaginary maps, they should have to make their own."
- "WOW, what a stupid decision. Enjoy the backlash!"
Whether or not you agree with a boycott, it seems clear now that anything - anything- published by HarperCollins or any of its subsidiaries must be questioned for accuracy - and honesty. Perhaps the best comment was made by Rick Moran in his post at American Thinker today: "The publisher had little choice - except to abandon a lucrative market or comply. I think there are some business decisions that may cost a company money, but allow it to hang on to its soul. This is one of those times."
HarperCollins erases Israel from atlases Times of Israel
Sin of omission? HarperCollins leaves Israel off the map Al Bawaba
The Fake Map Of ‘Lost Palestinian Territory’ The Muslim Issue
UAE's Etihad Airways denies omitting Israel from in-flight map Haaretz
How Putin Manipulates Russians Using Revisionist History Forbes
Russia Propaganda Rises Again: Fake Maps Depict a Much Smaller Ukraine Daily Signal