Tuesday, September 06, 2005


On the Palestinian Refugee Camps

links to an important piece by CAMERA, on the subject of the much-maligned Palestinian refugee camps.

The camps have been there ever since the UN built the first of them in 1948. We thus have third-generation and even fourth-generation refugees, still living in squalor in refugee camps, nearly sixty years after the end of the war that displaced them -- a situation with no equal in the modern history of warfare.

Why on Earth are the refugees still there? Why hasn't anyone tried to get them out of the camps?

The short answer is that one nation did try to help, with a heavily-subsidized "build your own home" program. Palestinian refugees who took advantage of the program would get modern homes with full infrastructure, land of their own, public buildings around which to build a community -- the works.

But after a promising start, the program was shut down by the UN... with the PLO (forerunners of the current Palestinian leadership) threatening to kill any Palestinian who tried to take advantage of such an offer.

Any guesses as to which country it was that tried to subsidize sensible housing for Palestinians? Yup, you guessed it -- right the first time.


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