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THE

INCREDIBLE

STORY OF THE JEWISH PEOPLE



ISRAEL

SUMMARY
PALESTINE REFUGEES

____________________________________________________

In 1948 the British mandate of Palestine was split between the Jews and Arabs and became Israel.  The following day it was invaded by 5 Arab armies whose objectives were to expel the Jews.  The opposite happened and their allocated territory was expanded.   700,000 fled based on a combination of fear and requests by the invading armies.  They anticipated that they would return within a few weeks.  Instead they were refused readmission by Israel  and became the Palestine refugees.  The Arab League decided they should be used as political weapons against Israel and refused admission as citizens of surrounding countries other than as second class citizens or in camps.  So the 700,000 became known as refugees.  Their number increased after the 1967 war and together they became known as the Palestinian refugees.  In  1949 a UN organistion called UNWRA was set up to look after them.  It was thought it would be disbanded in a few years.  70 years later it still exists with 30,000 employees and a budget of over $1,000,000,000 per year  mostly paid by Western countries with the Arab countries contributing little except for special projects.

The following year another UN organisation called UNHCR  was set up for refugees from the rest of the world.

The  main differences between them were that UNWRA took over state functions such as running schools and in their definitions of a refugee and defined a ‘refugee’ as having a heritable status while UNHCR did not  give them a heritable status.  Today the Palestine Refugees are the only refugee group still existing from 1948/1967 and the only one able to grow.  After 70  years the original 700,000  has grown to over 7,000,000 (registered and unregistered with UNWRA and will steadily increase.  Of the original refugees it is estimated that only 40-70,000 are still alive.  .

This can be contrasted to the 1,000,000 Jewish exiles from Arab countries who quickly lost their status as Refugees.  They have contributed to the economy instead of being a drain on it as are the Palestinian refugees because of the conditions in which they are forced to live and how they are treated in the countries in which the live..

Most of the  Palestinian Refugees want to lose their refugee status and become normal not second class citizens of Arab countries.

UNRWRA should be abolished and its functions passed to UNHCR and and the state so creating unified and not dual systems as example with  education.   Major opposition to this would come from UNWRA which has grown to over 30,000, mostly Palestinian, employees. Many  of its leadership would lose their jobs and  corruption payments to maintain UNWRA would vanish.