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Wednesday, December 05, 2007

UNRWA announces donors - how do the rich Arabs stack up?

The UNRWA yesterday announced the amounts of money pledged by different countries for its work in 2008.
Country Amount Pledged
Turkey $500,000
Germany $11,000,000
Bahrain $50,000
Austria $2,770,000
Luxemburg $3,000,000
European Community €66,000,000
Netherlands $15,900,000
United Arab Emirates $1,000,000
Switzerland 11,000,000 SwF
Italy $15,000,000
China $80,000
Kuwait $1,500,000
Norway 150,000,000 NKr
Holy See $20,000
United States $90,000,000
Denmark $18,000,000
Oman $25,000
Spain €2,600,000
Finland €3,000,000
Egypt $10,000
Ireland $5,500,000
Iceland $300,000

These numbers are probably not complete yet.

As in the past, the amounts that Arab nations give to UNRWA are a pittance. Egypt, Oman and Bahrain only give token amounts, and the combined Arab contribution announced is smaller than those of Ireland or Austria. It appears that Arab concern towards their Palestinian brethren shows itself in paying for terrorist weapons and the families of "martyrs" and not so much in providing things like food and jobs.

Keep in mind also that the Gulf is now awash with cash because of inflated oil prices, taking in net profits of some $5 billion every week, going on world shopping sprees of real-estate, banks and other blue-chip stocks. Not only could they bankroll all of UNRWA easily; they could build an Arab Palestine-in-exile in the underpopulated Gulf and provide free permanent housing to every PalArab who desires to move there.

But keeping them in miserable camps fits in with their strategy. Happy, contented Palestinian Arabs do not.