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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Palestinian Arabs fleeing West Bank

Firas Press reports on a huge number of young Palestinian Arab men who have been emigrating from the West Bank.

According to a new report by the Palestinian Economic Policy Research Institute in cooperation with the Central Bureau of Statistics,
There are surprising statistics about emigration in the Palestinian territories, which have been exacerbated in recent years, causing a "brain drain" to other countries.

The studies agreed that emigration, both domestic and abroad, has had negative effects on Palestinian society, in social, economic and political arenas.

The study revealed that the Palestinian territories is third in the Middle East in terms of migration rates and ranks sixth among middle-income countries, in addition to being a major part of the most vital migration corridors in the world.

The study said that the number of Palestinians who fled to Jordan since the beginning of this year exceeded 260,000, but during the same period, only 197,000 returned.
This has been a consistent pattern throughout the short history of Palestinian Arabs. The young, smart and ambitious have always sought to leave. These are the hundreds of thousands who emigrated en masse to Kuwait and Iraq in the latter half of the 20th century, the ones who refused to be stuck in "refugee" camps and fed by UNRWA for their entire lives. These Palestinian Arabs - including a large number in Europe and the Americas - represent the best and the brightest of their people, because they were they refuse to live on handouts and in a dead-end situation. While they are proud of their heritage, they really have little desire to live in a Palestinian state themselves. An additional 63,000 emigrants this year is not to be considered unusual.

Half of younger PalArabs want to emigrate. Apparently they don't care about living in "their" land all that much, and the enforced nationalism has not penetrated their psyches a great deal. They just want to live somewhere without worrying about war or the terrible PalArab economy, where they can get real jobs and support their families in honor. Building up a Palestinian Arab state is not a romantic notion to them - it is a bitter joke, as they have seen better than anyone how corrupt the legacy of Arafat has been, how their leaders are more interested in self-preservation than in real progress and how divided their people really are.

If the Arab world was smart, they would welcome these educated and motivated young men as citizens, rather than risk them going to the West. But unfortunately the Arab world is more fixated on keeping these people stateless - in the name of "Palestinian unity" - because of hatred of Israel as well as fear of the changes that an influx of hardworking, smart men could effect in their dictatorships.

So instead we see them leave whenever and to wherever they can. And the ones they leave behind are the lazy ones, or the ones who are attracted to terror, or the ones who just gave up.