Sunday, June 22, 2014

  • Sunday, June 22, 2014
  • Elder of Ziyon
The newest UNRWA head, Pierre Krähenbühl, wrote an essay for World Refugee Day where he takes no responsibility for the problems of "refugees" who would not be considered refugees if they weren't considered Palestinian:

Beyond Syria, unsustainability confronts Palestine refugees living in the West Bank where the human impact of the Israeli occupation and settlement expansion is multi-dimensional and profound. ...In Gaza, unsustainability has many yardsticks. One in particular has struck me profoundly. The number of Palestine refugees coming to UNRWA for food handouts has increased from 80,000 in 2000 to over 800,000 today.

For comparison, let's see how UNHCR describes itself:

The 1951 Refugee Convention spells out that a refugee is someone who "owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality, and is unable to, or owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country."

Since then, UNHCR has offered protection and assistance to tens of millions of refugees, finding durable solutions for many of them.
By definition, Palestinian Arabs living in the areas of British Mandate Palestine are not refugees. But when the UNHCR was established, a loophole was established for them as well to keep UNRWA in existence, for as long as needed. A tiny paragraph in the UN Refugee Convention that was meant to be temporary has been greedily used by UNRWA to build a giant bureaucracy meant to perpetuate the problem.

While UNHCR tries - and succeeds - in finding durable solutions to the refugees under their control, UNRWA works to increase the problem, by defining descendants of refugees to be considered refugees as well.

While UNHCR convinces host countries to provide citizenship for those who cannot return to their homes, and removing them from refugee status, UNRWA does not lift a finger to request that Egypt or Libya or Lebanon allow the "refugees" to become citizens.

UNRWA created the anomalous definition of "refugee" in such a way that the problem will only get worse unless Israel voluntarily decides to commit suicide.

UNRWA doesn't even ask the Palestinian Authority to dismantle the "refugee" camps under its control and to mainstream the residents into society. The PA, of course, doesn't want to act as if their people are any of their concern. UNRWA doesn't give a damn. It wants more "refugees," not less, so it can demand more money from the West (Arab countries generally ignore UNRWA's pleas for funds.)

Of course the problem is unsustainable - because UNRWA has set up the rules of the game to keep it that way, and to only blame Israel for the fact that Arab leaders have purposefully used Palestinian Arabs as pawns for 65 years.

Indeed,  UNRWA is the problem. And the only possible way to fix the situation is for UNRWA to be phased out and the funding going to Arab governments to treat their Palestinian Arab "brethren" like human beings, with full human rights.

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Elder of Ziyon - حـكـيـم صـهـيـون

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