The False Palestinian Refugee, Self-Determination Narrative

U.S. President Joe Biden decided that he would start to donate American taxpayer money to the specialized United Nations agency solely devoted to Palestinians, despite the troubled agency making few reforms. UNRWA has been constantly criticized for promoting anti-Semitism, has harbored weapons for terrorist groups and has long been a thorn in the Arab-Israeli peace process.

UNRWA actively perpetuates a false narrative that Palestinian Arabs are refugees from their homeland – even though Palestinians view all of pre-1948 Palestine as a single entity, meaning that they still live in their perceived homeland if they reside in Israel, Gaza or the West Bank.

Moreover, UNRWA encourages a storyline that all Palestinian Arabs are refugees. This is patently false. Many are stateless, but not refugees.

As seen in the charts above, according to UNRWA’s own numbers, 73% of Gazans are refugees (or more accurately, descendants of refugees) while another 8% are given services by UNRWA even though they are not refugees by any definition. Roughly one-in-five Gazans are simply residents, who have had family ties in the strip for generations who never had children with a descendant of a refugee (who would otherwise then get hereditary refugee status according to UNRWA).

The numbers east of the Green Line (EGL) / the “West Bank” are quite different, where over half of the Arabs are residents who have descendants from the region. Roughly 40% of Arab West Bankers registered with UNRWA as refugees to get free housing, education and healthcare, with another 9% “grantees” also getting services from the agency.

Another piece of commonly-stated fiction is that the Arabs have no self-determination and live under Israeli control. As Biden would say, that is “malarkey.”

Israel completely pulled out of Gaza in 2005 and gave the local Arabs there complete self-determination. With that freedom, Arabs voted the terrorist group Hamas to 58% of the Palestinian parliament in 2006 and watched Hamas take over the Gaza Strip in 2007. Hamas has thus far launched three wars from the area in 2008-9, 2012 and 2014.

Regarding EGL, Israel handed control of Areas A and B to the Palestinian Authority as part of the Oslo accords in the 1990’s. Only 14% of West Bank Arabs live in Area C under Israeli-control.

No matter. The world still berates Israel despite handing the PA land and being rewarded with wars, and condemns the Jewish State again for defending itself. No one pauses to contemplate why Israel would consider repeating the abuse at the hands of Palestinians, the UN and the media.

The Arab and Muslim-dominated United Nations manufactured a false narrative that Palestinian Arabs are refugees under Israeli-control which the anti-Israel media parrots in their quest to see the creation of a Palestinian State. In reality, it is those very lies that hinder the chance of reaching an enduring peace.


Related First One Through articles:

UNRWA Artificially Extends Its Mandate

New Head of UNRWA is Another Hamas-Sympathizer Politician

Palestinian Arabs De-Registering from UNRWA

UNRWA Anoints New Palestinian Wards

The Gross OVER-Staffing of UNRWA Schools

Enduring Peace versus Peace Now

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