The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

HarperCollins isn’t the only publisher to wipe Israel off the map

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Sorry? Given that the omission was a deliberate decision to appease customers who wish Israel didn’t exist, one thing we can be pretty sure of is that HarperCollins is sorry that somebody noticed the omission outside the countries where these maps were welcome.

But it isn’t the only publishing company that wiped Israel off the map. Scholastic Inc., the large children’s book publisher, did the same thing in books for kids in 2013.

Yes, Scholastic apologized when a mom in Jerusalem noticed that a book called “Thea Stilton and the Blue Scarab Hunt,” — part of a story about mouse journalists looking for treasure in the Mideast — included a map that showed Egypt and other nearby Arab countries but was missing Israel,

in the Times of Israel. Scholastic issued an apology on its blog on Nov. 13, 2013, that said:

As you have probably heard, Thea Stilton and the Blue Scarab Hunt, a title in the Geronimo Stilton series, published by Scholastic, includes a map that inadvertently omits Israel. Scholastic is immediately stopping shipment on this title, revising the map, and going back to reprint. We regret the omission which was in the original version of the book published in Italy and was translated by our company for English language distribution.
Thank you for your patience and understanding in this matter.

Inadvertent? How many people proofed that book?

In any case, those aren’t the only maps and books that omit Israel. Many textbooks in Mideast countries don’t show Israel in maps, and this November 2013 story in the New York Times reported that Hamas, the movement that controls the Gaza Strip, was introducing new textbooks that would be used “as part of a broader push to infuse the next generation with its militant ideology” and that don’t recognize modern Israel. So much for geographic accuracy.