The Disgraceful Promotion of Refugee-Washing ‘Nakba’ In The U.S. Congress

Palestinian-American Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) submitted a bill to congress to commemorate the ‘Nakba’, or ‘catastrophe’ of the reestablishment of the Jewish State shortly after the Holocaust, in which Palestinian Arabs who waited for the destruction of Israel were refused reentry into the country. Below is a review of H.Res.1123 Recognizing the Nakba and Palestinian refugees’ rights, submitted on May 16, 2022.

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) talking at the Democratic Socialists of America event in 2021 where she said Jews control people and profit off of racism

Ms. Tlaib (for herself, Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, Ms. Omar, Ms. McCollum, Ms. Newman, Mr. Bowman, and Ms. Bush) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs

It should be noted that two of the co-sponsors of the resolution, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and Rep. Jamaal Bowman, represent the tri-state New York area, home to the largest concentration of Jews outside of Israel. That these two members of congress continue to have seats says much about the Jewish community prioritizing Israel or bothering to pressure their representatives about Israel.

Whereas the United Nations General Assembly recommended on November 29, 1947, to partition Palestine into two states against the wishes of Palestine’s majority indigenous inhabitants;

At the time of the UNGA resolution, Palestine was less than 60% Arab and it would have been closer to 50% had the British not instituted the 1939 White Paper at the behest of local Arabs, preventing 100,000 Jews from fleeing the Holocaust in Europe, resulting in their deaths.

“Whereas this partition plan nevertheless provided for the “Full protection for the rights and interests of minorities, including the protection of the linguistic, religious and ethnic rights of the peoples and respect for their cultures, and full equality of all citizens with regard to political, civil and religious matters”;”

After rejecting the partition plan, Tlaib nevertheless embraces some positions, even while misunderstanding them completely. Israel did protect the rights of all, granting citizenship to everyone. This is in sharp contrast to the Arab nations of Transjordan and Egypt who illegally seized the ‘West Bank’ and Gaza, respectively, and ethnically-cleansed all Jews from those lands. Transjordan renamed itself Jordan with its newest illegal land, and then granted citizenships ONLY to Arabs in 1954, specifically excluding Jews. [1954 Jordanian Citizenship Law, article 3]

“Whereas before the State of Israel declared its independence on May 14, 1948, there were already between 250,000 to 300,000 Palestinian refugees who were expelled or fled from their homes often after attacks by Zionist militias on major Palestinian cities and villages;”

The Civil War for the land of Palestine was not about “attacks by Zionist militias” against unarmed civilians as portrayed by Tlaib but between warring parties of which the Arabs were much better armed and had initiated the fighting. In terms of people fleeing, there were Jews who fled the battle scenes too. The figure of “250,000 to 300,000” is preposterous as well. That many people fled the land to places like London and Canada or Jordan and Syria? If they stayed inside of the British Mandate boundaries, they cannot be considered refugees going from one town to another.

Palestinian Arabs mark Nakba Day 2013 with calls for violence in Bethlehem, a city Israel handed to the Palestinian Authority in 1995 as part of the Oslo Accords (photo: Ryan Rodrick Beiler/Activestills.org)

“Whereas by the time the war ended with the signing of armistice agreements between Israel and neighboring Arab countries in 1949, establishing Israel’s sovereignty over 78 percent of Palestine, and, in the process, conquering an additional 23 percent of Palestine beyond those areas allocated to the Jewish state under the partition plan, there were at least 750,000 Palestinian refugees (roughly 75 percent of the indigenous population that had lived in areas that became Israel);”

Israel was established on 22 percent LESS of Palestine than afforded it under the international mandate. The Arabs rejected the partition plan and it was never implemented so why does Tlaib reference it here at all, other than to make it sound that Israelis got more when indeed they got less.

In terms of the total number of refugees, the figure thrown about includes people who moved a few miles away to Gaza and what later became known as the ‘West Bank.’ If those areas were part of ‘Palestine’, then those people are called ‘internally-displaced’, not refugees. To be clear, there were about 770,000 Arab Muslims in the Mandate in 1931, a figure which jumped to 1.056 million in 1945, a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.3%. Extrapolating that number would suggest a total Arab Muslim population of 1.182 million in 1950. However, the actual figure for Arab Muslims in 1950 in Israel, Gaza and the ‘West Bank’ was 1.015 million, or 167,000 fewer than anticipated. Using the same approach for Christians who grew at a 3.0% CAGR from 1931 to 1945 would have produced 164,000 Christians in 1950, instead of the 65,000 actually in the region in that year, or 99,000 fewer people. That means that the total number of actual refugees that left Mandate Palestine was 267,000 of which 37% were Christians, many fleeing a religious war between Muslims and Jews (not because of the creation of Israel).

“Whereas, by 1949, Israel had depopulated more than 400 Palestinian villages and cities, often demolishing all structures, planting forests over them, or repopulating them with Jewish Israelis;”

Tlaib’s anti-Semitism is made clear: she makes all Arabs appear as indigenous and true ‘Palestinians’ when hundreds of thousands of Jews lived in the land as Palestinian Jews. She ignored the fact that the government of Israel gave citizenship to all Arabs who remained with full rights. She ignored the fact that the Arabs started the war against the small and weak Jews in their midst. She ignored the Arab ransacking of the Jewish Quarter of the Old City of Jerusalem. Instead, she calls out “Jewish Israelis” who took Palestinian villages.

“Whereas Palestinians refer to this experience of uprooting, dispossession, and refugeedom as the Nakba (meaning “catastrophe” in English);”

The Palestinians rejected coexistence proposed in the partition plan, then launched and lost a war because they wanted to live in a Jew-free land. It’s Arab attitude that is a Nakba.

Palestinian Arabs rip down and burn Israeli flags on Nakba Day (photo: Menahem Kahana / AFP / Getty Images)

“Whereas the Nakba refers not only to a historical event but to an ongoing process of Israel’s expropriation of Palestinian land and its dispossession of the Palestinian people that continues to this day through the establishment and expansion of approximately 300 illegal settlements and outposts in the occupied Palestinian West Bank in which approximately 674,000 Israelis reside as of 2020;”

The Nakba-attitude of rejecting coexistence is definitely an “ongoing process.” Jordan attacked Israel in 1967 and Israel re-took the land in a defensive battle. Arab armies launched a war in 1973 on Judaism’s holiest day of Yom Kippur. Palestinian terrorists hijacked airplanes and killed Jews all over the world. And not only Jews – consider Palestinian assassination of US Senator Robert Kennedy. Arabs launched multi-year pogroms killing thousands of Jewish civilians in the 1980’s, 1990’s and 2000’s.

And of course, Palestinians reject Jews moving back to their holiest city of Jerusalem, and pretend there is a “Palestinian West Bank”. In truth, there are lands that Israel gave to the Palestinian Authority – Gaza, and Areas A and B – where Palestinian Arabs have self-determination, of course, as is their desire, in land devoid of a single Jew.

“Whereas the United States knew of the scale and magnitude of the Palestine refugee crisis as it unfolded, as is documented in an October 1948 telegram to the President and Secretary of State from the Embassy of the United States to Israel, warning that the “Arab Refugee tragedy is rapidly reaching catastrophic proportions and should be treated as a disaster”;”

The United States State Department stated clearly that Arabs started the 1948-9 Arab-Israeli War: “Fighting began with attacks by irregular bands of Palestinian Arabs attached to local units of the Arab Liberation Army composed of volunteers from Palestine and neighboring Arab countries. These groups launched their attacks against Jewish cities, settlements, and armed forces… On the eve of May 14, the Arabs launched an air attack on Tel Aviv, which the Israelis resisted. This action was followed by the invasion of the former Palestinian mandate by Arab armies from Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and Egypt. Saudi Arabia sent a formation that fought under the Egyptian command.” Israel was engaged in a defensive war for its survival against Arabs from Palestine and neighboring countries.

“Whereas the United States voted in favor of United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194 on December 11, 1948, which states that Palestinian “refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the governments or authorities responsible”;”

The Palestinians have never sought to “live at peace” with Israel. Not in 1948, in 1967, in 2001 nor today. The United States also voted for the UN partition plan in 1947. How do any of the votes of 75 years ago matter today? In 2004, President Bush made clear that as part of Israel leaving Gaza, that “a solution to the Palestinian refugee issue as part of any final status agreement will need to be found through the establishment of a Palestinian state, and the settling of Palestinian refugees there, rather than in Israel.”

Arabs climb fence between Syria and Israel in Nakba Day protest (photo: Jalaa Marey/Reuters)

“Whereas Palestinian refugees’ right of return is not only stipulated in a General Assembly resolution, but is also anchored in international law and in Article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which states: “Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country”;”

The UDHR principal is to return to a COUNTRY, not a town or house. As Palestine was not a country this article is irrelevant. Further, that same UN wanted to separate the land – not country – into new Arab and Jewish states in 1947. Moving the Arabs into the Jewish state undermines that basic principle.

“Whereas, on December 8, 1949, the United Nations General Assembly adopted Resolution 302 establishing the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, which the United States has financially supported on an almost continuous basis since its establishment;”

UNRWA was established as a TEMPORARY agency. It’s existence over 70 years later has proven an embarrassment and obstacle to peace. That is why the US had suspended payments to the organization and European countries are cutting back significantly.

An Israeli policeman bleeds from an injury during clashes with Palestinians commemorating Nakba Day at Damascus Gate, Jerusalem, May 15, 2013.(Photo by: Ryan Rodrick Beiler/Activestills.org)

“Whereas of the more than 7,000,000 Palestinian refugees, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East provides much-needed social services to 5,700,000 Palestine refugees today;”

UNRWA is a general social services organization that treats many people who are NOT refugees. By its own account, UNRWA continues to service hundreds of thousands of “other” people who live in the area. And why not? The idea that descendants of internally-displaced people are somehow “refugees” is an absurdity anyway.

“Whereas international law also recognizes that descendants of refugees retain their rights as refugees, and that according to the United Nations, “Palestine refugees are not distinct from other protracted refugee situations such as those from Afghanistan or Somalia, where there are multiple generations of refugees, considered by UNHCR as refugees and supported as such. Protracted refugee situations are the result of the failure to find political solutions to their underlying political crises”; and”

This is completely untrue. If Tlaib likes UNHCR so much, why not just fold UNRWA into that global organization? It would get rid of rampant corruption, support of terrorism and the major obstacle to peace in the region. UNHCR seeks to find a solution for refugees fleeing war. UNRWA seeks to find only one political solution for one particular group of people – Stateless Arabs from Palestine (SAPs) to move into Israel. UNRWA insists that SAPs stay registered with UNRWA and live in its environs, essentially making them prisoners. Should they opt to move – say to London – they would lose this anointed status of “refugee” and free housing, education and medical care today, as well as the chance for free housing in Israel or lots of money. UNHCR has no such political agenda and welcomes actual refugees fleeing war to find citizenship and life anywhere.

“Whereas a just and lasting resolution requires respect for and the implementation of Palestine refugee rights as enshrined in United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194 and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: Now, therefore, be it”

Concluding her introductory remarks, Tlaib called out legal principals for a “lasting resolution.” She continued the narrative that there can be no peace with Israel unless the manufactured issue of “refugees” is resolved.

Palestinian rioters mark Nakba Day, 2012 (photo: Majdi Mohammed/ AFP)

ResolvedThat it is the sense of the House of Representatives that it is the policy of the United States to—

(1) commemorate the Nakba through official recognition and remembrance;

(2) reject efforts to enlist, engage, or otherwise associate the United States Government with denial of the Nakba;

(3) encourage education and public understanding of the facts of the Nakba, including the United States role in the humanitarian relief effort, and the relevance of the Nakba to modern-day refugee crises;”

The first three points highlighted by Tlaib refer to the ‘Nakba’. In Tlaib’s version of history, that would mean educating people that only Arabs are indigenous to Palestine; that Zionists attacked the native Palestinian Arabs and stole their lands; obfuscating that Arabs in 1948 – and today – desired a land free of any Jews; and that Palestinian Arabs want peace, even though they reject the very notion of a Jewish State in Palestine to this day. In other words, supporters of this resolution are looking to support continuing the 1948-9 Arab War against the Jewish State.

(4) continue to support the provision of social service to Palestinian refugees through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East; and

(5) support the implementation of Palestinian refugees’ rights as enshrined in United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194 and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.”

UNRWA has shown itself to be a deeply flawed organization. In no situation should the US government be compelled to support a temporary UN agency, which is one of the leading obstacles to peace in the region.

Further, UN Resolution 194 was a document prepared in the midst of a war. It includes numerous provisions which have absolutely no relevance today. Bringing up the December 1948 resolution highlights the dated and irrelevant orientation about refugees from which Tlaib seeks to enshrine certain rights. Indeed, US presidents have made clear that the resolution of the “refugee” issue would have them settle in a new state of Palestine, not Israel.

Palestinians wave Hamas flags on the Jewish Temple Mount. Hamas warned Jews about visiting their holiest site on Nakba Day, 2022. (Photo by Ahmad GHARABLI / AFP)

The Nakba isn’t a historical fact but a biased narrative. It attempts to whitewash the Arab attempt to destroy Jews’ safe haven in their ancestral homeland immediately after the Holocaust. Its a flimsy veneer of refugee-washing to promote refugee rights as evidence of being the wronged victim, to distract the world from the violent anti-Semitic screed of the popular Hamas Charter which encapsulates Palestinian desire for a Jew-free land. It’s a disgusting attitude which inspired the war against the Jews in 1948 and continues to this day.

That six members of the US Congress would promote commemorating the ‘Nakba’, highlights how anti-Semitism and racism is being mainstreamed in America today.

Related articles:

Seeing the Holocaust Through Nakba Eyes

The Fourth ‘No’ of the Khartoum Resolution: No Return of Palestinian Refugees

The Calming Feeling of Palestinian Refugees: Rashida Tlaib in Her Own Words

The Arab Middle East Makes Refugees, They Don’t Help Them

Criticizing Muslim Antisemitism is Not Islamophobia

The Anti-Zionist Lexicon – Whitewashing Palestinians

Palestinian supporters who hate Israel use a variety of terms to whitewash the crimes and intentions of Palestinian Arabs. Below is a sampling with a review of the misdirection.

“Intifada”

The term “Intifada” means “Uprising.” It gives the sense that the movement is one of empowering the disenfranchised as a matter of protest rather than the reality of genocidal terrorism.

The “Second Intifada” which raged from roughly September 2000 to September 2004 witnessed Palestinian Arabs blowing up ice cream parlors full of children, school lunchrooms and buses. Over 1,000 innocent Israeli civilians were killed in the mayhem because the leadership of the Palestinians refused to accept anything less than 100% of their demands.

Intifada means war. It means terrorism. The call for an intifada is not a protest chant but an incitement to violence.

A pro-Palestinian rally in New York City on July 31 featured protestors chanting “globalize the Intifada” and other anti-Israel chants.

“Martyr”

The Palestinian murderers of Israeli civilians are described as “martyrs” by Palestinians. They are held up as idols for Palestinian children when schools, soccer tournaments and public squares are named for the terrorists. The mothers and fathers of the killers are showcased on television telling the Arab public how proud they are of the killer’s sacrifice. The Palestinian Authority pays the families of the terrorists monthly stipends for their “contribution” of killing the enemy.

For clarity, the term “martyr” actually means “a person who is killed because of their religious beliefs.” Using the term for Palestinian terrorists turns Israel into racist murderers rather than victims of jihadi genocidal maniacs.

“Slain attackers”

Much like the term “martyrs,” pro-Palestinian press prefers to call Palestinian terrorists killed while committing murder as “slain attackers.” The word “slain” is defined as “to kill violently, wantonly, or in great numbers.” In other words, according to anti-Zionist rags like The New York Times, it is Palestinian Arab “attackers” who are killed violently and wantonly by Israelis. Not only are Israelis racists (see “martyrs” above) but also mass murderers.

“Resistance”

The political-terrorist group Hamas calls itself a “resistance force.” It is a designated terrorist group by dozens of western countries because of the hundreds of attacks it has perpetrated on civilians around the world. Its foundational charter is an anti-Semitic screed which calls for the murder of Jews and destruction of Israel. The people of Gaza continue to support killing Israeli civilians in every poll.

The Palestinian “resistance” is to the mere presence of Jews which they have made clear in 100 years of riots and wars, even though Palestinian supporters will portray the Arabs as only protesting “Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.

“Desperate”

Palestinian apologists claim that Palestinians are “desperate” which is why they take such vicious actions against Israeli civilians. That’s outrageous. Desperate people gladly take whatever they can; entitled people refuse to take anything less than full demands.

Palestinians have refused every offer for peace for generations. They demand a country without a single Jew living in it. They categorically refuse to acknowledge that Israel is a Jewish State as part of a final settlement. A desperate people clinging for a chance at self-determination would never deny such things, unless their actual goal is to deny Jews of their own homes and country.

“Resorting to violence”

Anti-Israel opinion rags like The New York Times sometimes go beyond painting Palestinians as “desperate” people “resisting” Israeli occupation. It states that the political-terrorist group Hamas (which it never calls a terrorist group) has “resorted to violence.” The feeble-minded gray lady writes this despite the Hamas making its genocidal intentions public for the whole world to see.

“Impatient”

Doubling-down on a twisted portrayal of Hamas, The Times excuses violent flare-ups from Gaza as “localized expression of Palestinian impatience,” as it wrote on the front page of its May 6, 2019 paper. According to the anti-Israel paper, Israelis get shot because Gazans are impatient, not because they are the most anti-Semitic people in the world who are in favor of killing Israelis.

“Free Palestine”

Chants of “Free Palestine,” “From the River to the Sea, Palestine will be free,” and “we don’t want two states, we want all of it” are spun as simply a desire for equality in the holy land for Jews and Arabs. It is nothing of the sort but a call for the destruction of the Jewish State of Israel.

Liberal media inverts the “from the river to the sea” as actually the chant of Jewish extremists who want to annex the West Bank, an area that was part-and-parcel of the British Mandate which called for the reestablishment of a Jewish homeland there.

“Arab Land”

Sorry, but Israel is not part of the Arabian Peninsula. It’s also not part of the League of Arab States. It’s also not European nor African. It’s a little swatch of land connecting many continents.

Are the people who use this expression arguing that land itself has the DNA of a particular people? Would the same people say that Europe is “White Land” or Africa is “Black Land?” If someone were to argue that some lands truly are part and parcel of a specialized group of people, they would have to admit that the Land of Israel is “Jewish Land,” as Judaism is the only religion with a tie to specific land.

The term “Arab Land” is deliberately designed to sever the thousands of years of history that Jews have in the land. It is an example of the fictitious narrative that “Jesus was a Palestinian” and not a Jew, in an attempt to not just evict the current Jewish presence in the land but to expunge the entirety of Jewish history.

“Dignity”

Politicians state over and again that Israel deserves “security” while Palestinians deserve “dignity.” It seems like such a simple ask of Israel, to afford the Palestinians some semblance of dignity.

But if the parameters of Palestinian dignity is that Jews cannot have sovereignty, cannot live in the West Bank, cannot pray on the Temple Mount, cannot buy land from an Arab and demands the denial of Jewish history, why should that sort of “dignity” be endorsed, let alone entertained?

“Refugees”

Palestinian supporters have used and abused the term “refugees” for Palestinian Arabs in ways that have no bearing on the word, and in doing so, harm over 30 million actual refugees fleeing war zones today.

The Palestinian Arabs cared for by UNRWA are not refugees but stateless. They deserve to become citizens of either a new country or an existing country but that doesn’t make a child whose grandparents left a town five miles away during a war a “refugee.” Yet, these Palestinian “refugees” are taking billions of dollars of support when such monies can be used for children actually fleeing for their lives to foreign lands where they don’t speak the language and have no family support or infrastructure.

A “Viable” State

Anti-Zionist supporters of the Palestinians argue that there are certain minimum standards that a new country of Palestine must have in order to be viable.

As discussed above, “viability” means that there can be no Jews. “Settlers” undermine the foundation of the country for some reason. While Arabs can live in Israel without destroying the state, seemingly a Jewish presence in Palestine undermines the very viability of the country.

Similarly, a Palestinian state would need to be much wider than Israel is today. If Israel were to annex land up to the town of Maale Adumim west of Jerusalem, critics warn that Palestine would be cut in two and non-viable with a country only 15km wide at one point. Meanwhile Israel is that wide along its main population centers without the cry to widen Israel.

“1967 Borders”

People use the term “1967 Borders” even though the 1949 armistice agreements struck between Israel and Jordan as well as between Israel and Egypt specifically stated that those lines have no meaning and do not function as borders.

Palestinian Citizens of Israel

Israel afforded all Arabs the opportunity to be citizens when it declared statehood in 1948 and affords all Arabs in Jerusalem to become Israeli citizens today. Over 20% of Israel’s population is Arab.

Pro-Palestinians don’t like the notion of “Israeli Arabs” as they think it somehow acknowledges the liberalism of Israel being an open society. Instead, they opt for the very wordy “Palestinian Citizens of Israel” to market the proposition that their tie to the land of Palestine is permanent as is their identity which are distinct from Israel. Should a new state of Palestine ever be created, there is no question that these same Palestinian propaganda promoters would call the Jews in the country “Palestinian Jews,” (G-d forbid, if they are allowed to live there), not “Israeli citizens of Palestine.”

“Palestinian East Jerusalem”

The anti-Zionist media will have you believe that “East Jerusalem” exists today even though it only existed as an artifice of war for 19 years that ceased to be over fifty years ago. To extend the fiction, they will promote that it is a Palestinian city, even though there is no recognized country of Palestine and no part of the city was ever conceived to be Arab in the 1947 UN Partition Plan.


The anti-Zionist lexicon is not only attacking the Jewish state but sanitizing Palestinian Arabs of their anti-Semitism and terrorism in an attempt to wish a State of Palestine into being. Everyone should readily recognize the abuse of language that has become mainstreamed by anti-Israel voices.


Related First One Through articles:

The Anti-Zionist Lexicon – Vilifying Israel

Nicholas Kristof’s “Arab Land”

Christiane Amanpour is More Anti-Semitic Than Ilhan Omar

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The UN Looks to Believe in the Palestinians (music by Rod Stewart)

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A Tale of Three Palestinian Refugees, With and Without UNRWA

The Biden Administration announced that it is going to send $150 million of American tax dollars to UNRWA, the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East. This “temporary” agency was established after the Arab war to destroy Israel in 1948-9, to care for “persons whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict.” It has continued to extend its mandate for decades, now caring for grandchildren and great-grandchildren of those “persons.”

Several parties voiced their disapproval with the United States’ UNRWA donation. Former Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said “UNRWA, is among the most corrupt and counterproductive of all UN agencies. President Trump was right to abandon it.” Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Gilad Erdan added “We believe that this UN agency for so-called ‘refugees’ should not exist in its current format.

UNRWA office in Jerusalem. (photo: First One Through)

To consider how the U.N. has handled “so-called ‘refugees'” in this “counterproductive” agency, imagine two Arabs leaving Palestine during the 1948-9 Arab-Israeli War. One had come to Palestine from Iraq in 1925 and the other from Syria in 1935, both settling in Jaffa. The Iraqi-Palestinian owned his home and his business and was reluctant to leave everything he had built but concluded that the war zone was too risky and returned to Iraq in 1949. The Syrian-Palestinian was renting his home and worked on a farm outside of town. He returned to Syria early in the war, assuming that the five invading Arab armies would finish the Zionists in short order and he could return to a Jew-free city, maybe even under the flag of Syria.

At war’s end, the Zionists were able to hold onto land – more than suggested under the 1947 United Nations Partition Plan and less than allocated under the British Palestine Mandate – and had no interest in allowing the return of those Arabs which wanted to see Israel destroyed.

The Iraqi-Palestinian Arab decided to abandon his Jaffa home and business and started life anew among his cousins in Iraq. However, the Syrian-Palestinian opted to not start again in his old neighborhood where he lived fifteen years earlier, and instead decided to take the free housing, food, education and medical services offered by the United Nations as part of its UNRWA initiative. His grandchildren continue to live as wards of the world because of that decision.

Another person impacted by the Arab-Israeli War was not an Arab but a Jew. He came to Palestine from Yemen at the end of the 19th century and moved to Jerusalem. The Jordanian army routed him from his home during the war and he returned to Yemen. Not long after, the anti-Semitism in Yemen became intolerable and he and his family moved to Canada.

All three of these individuals were “persons whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict,” but only one got services from UNRWA. The Palestinian Jew and Iraqi-Palestinian Arab each lost their homes and livelihood and were offered nothing from the United Nations. Only the Syrian-Palestinian Arab who chose to not move to his hometown in Syria, became a special grantee class. As long as he and his descendants remained a grantee, there was a U.N. promise that they would get property and/or money from the country which was transforming Jaffa and the surrounding region it controlled into an economic and technological miracle.

Today, the grandchildren of that Palestinian Jew and the Iraqi-Palestinian Arab are both successful businessmen and pay less attention to politics than they do to football. They think about the United Nations as much as they contemplate a hangnail from five years ago.

But the grandchildren of the Syrian-Palestinian have built their entire way of life around the largess of the United Nations and its promise that it will force Israel to hand them money or land as long as they continue to take UNRWA’s free education, medical services and housing. The U.N. is mother’s milk, a teat which has fed their entire family for generations with more gifts to come.

Watching these three “refugees” is an elderly fifth generation Palestinian Arab who had participated in the 1936-9 riots to keep the Jews out of Palestine and lobbied the British to halt their immigration as the Holocaust started in Europe. He headed to Gaza as the first tanks from five Arab armies invaded Israel. His roughly 60km trip from Jaffa to Gaza is about the same as from Manhattan to Stamford, CT. Had there never been a war and he had decided to relocate to Gaza (as several cousins did before the 1948-9 War), he would receive neither cries of empathy nor charity, but today he has over 100 descendants living for free in UNRWA housing around Gaza.

If the U.N. is attempting to resolve the lost property of people who fled the war zone, why should it matter whether they are registered as “refugees” and take services from UNRWA? Shouldn’t the Iraqi-Palestinian Arab and Palestinian Jew be entitled to consideration? Why should the Syrian-Palestinian get so much compensation when he never owned property?

The UNRWA policy leads one to conclude that its goal is not about money and property but to physically relocate a select sub-segment of the persons impacted by the war – only Arabs – into the Jewish State. Such UNRWA policy is in direct conflict with the stated U.N. goal of a two-state solution, one Arab and one Jewish, by injecting nearly 6 million Arabs into the Jewish State. One cannot be simultaneously in favor of two states and maintaining UNRWA.

There are significant issues to consider in the Arab-Israeli Conflict but the matter of Palestinian “refugees” has long been artificially manufactured. It is well past time to shut it down.


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’s Fake Students, Curriculum and Shortfall

The Growth of UNRWA’s “Other” Wards

Stabbing the Palestinian “Right of Return”

The Gross OVER-Staffing of UNRWA Schools

UNRWA’s Munchausen Disease

UNRWA’s Ongoing War against Israel and Jews

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

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Palestinian Arabs De-Registering from UNRWA

The saga of the Stateless Arabs from Palestine (SAPs) which have cast their lot with UNRWA for generations may finally be coming to an end.

Since 1949, the United Nations has promised Arabs who used to live and work in what became Israel, that they would be entitled to move back to their old houses. It didn’t matter if they had just moved those homes a few months before, 70 years ago. It didn’t matter if they were just renters and didn’t actually own any property. It didn’t matter that they rejected the very existence of Israel and wanted to see it destroyed. It didn’t even matter if they are the grandchild of someone who was just renting a house for a few months in what became Israel, and both they and their grandparents seek the end of the Jewish State. UNRWA crafted a special designation of “refugees” from Palestine:

“’persons whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict.’ The descendants of Palestine refugee males, including legally adopted children, are also eligible for registration.”

These “UNRWA Refugees” were given much more than free housing, education and healthcare from the United Nations. They were promised that, with the help of the UN, they would get to move to the thriving country of Israel.

With such benefits and promise, these SAPs opted to register themselves with UNRWA, despite being denied the ability to gain well-paying jobs by their host countries in Syria and Lebanon. While they had relatives who moved on with their lives and became citizens of various countries ranging from Chile to the United Kingdom, the UNRWA Refugees opted to remain stateless and to live on handouts.

But those days may be coming to an end.

The ongoing war in Syria has been devastating, not just on Syrian civilians but on the UNRWA Refugees living in Syria. The unrest in Lebanon has not been much better. Meanwhile, the UNRWA Refugees watch actual refugees from Syria and Lebanon who are treated by the UNHCR (UN High Commissioner for Refugees) getting much better aid and a pathway out of the humanitarian disaster. Not surprisingly, the UNRWA Refugees are looking for a better deal.

On November 11, 2019, the acting officer in charge of UNRWA (as the prior head was fired for improper activities), Christian Saunders, addressed the UN about the current activities in the region. He noted at the end of his remarks:

“Emphasizing that the community of Palestine refugees from Syria inside Lebanon live in extremely difficult conditions, he said they are actively exploring ways to leave, with some demanding deregistration from UNRWA in the belief that it would offer access to resettlement opportunities available to other refugees from Syria.”

UNRWA Refugees are demanding de-registration from UNRWA to become regular refugees under the UNHCR which cares for every other refugee in the world.

The disgrace of UNRWA has been apparent for years, with corruption at the top, over-staffing, hiring of militants, warehousing of weapons to be used against Israel, textbooks which vilify the basic notion of coexistence and more. But it has taken a full 70 years since the establishment of UNRWA on December 8, 1949, for the organization to begin to devolve from within, from the very wards it was meant to assist declaring that they have had enough.

UNRWA was established to be a temporary agency in which “constructive measures should be undertaken at an early date with a view to the termination of international assistance for relief,” as noted in Article 5 in its founding declaration. World sympathy (with perhaps not an insignificant amount of anti-Israel animus) prevented those ‘constructive measures’ from being enacted and billions of dollars in aid were spent on the descendants of the Palestinian Arabs who had started the war to destroy Israel. But lifetimes of long-term promises may finally yield to the dreams of immediate normalcy.

Christian Saunders, new deputy commissioner general of UN agency for Palestinian refugees. UN


Related First.One.Through articles:

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

The Growth of UNRWA’s “Other” Wards

What’s Wrong with UNRWA

Shut UNRWA in Gaza Immediately

UNRWA’s Ongoing War against Israel and Jews

UNRWA’s Munchausen Disease

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The Growth of UNRWA’s “Other” Wards

The last post “UNRWA Anoints New Palestinian Wards” generated many questions. Does the agency tasked with helping descendants of internally-displaced people from 1948 actually assist non-refugees as well?

The answer is unambiguously yes.

Here is UNRWA’s report from January 1, 2011. It shows a whopping growth in the number of “refugees,” including a growth of 8.9% in the West Bank alone. If that sounds too hard to believe that Arabs suddenly went from an annual population growth of 2-3% to 9%, it’s because it is untrue. UNRWA decided to add lots of other people onto its service rolls.

Here is a chart the following year in January 2012, the first time UNRWA broke out figures for this “other” category.

Table 1. 2012 UNRWA Recipients Totals

2012 Jordan Lebanon Syria West Bank Gaza Total
Refugees        1,979,580        436,154        486,946        727,471        1,167,572        4,797,723
“Others”              67,787           29,644           23,498        147,156              49,947            318,032
Total        2,047,367        465,798        510,444        874,627        1,217,519        5,115,755
other % 3.3% 6.4% 4.6% 16.8% 4.1% 6.2%

The non-refugees who received aid from UNRWA were 6.2% of the total population, and an incredible 16.8% in the West Bank.

The world didn’t seem to care and kept sending money to the agency. So the numbers of “others” kept on skyrocketing.

Here is a chart from January 2019, which shows that the “other” percentage jumped to over 10% of the total population serviced by UNRWA.

Table 2. 2019 UNRWA Recipients Totals

2019 Jordan Lebanon Syria West Bank Gaza Total
Refugees        2,242,579        475,075        560,139        846,465        1,421,282        5,545,540
“Others”            133,902           58,810           83,003        201,525            149,013            626,253
Total        2,376,481        533,885        643,142     1,047,990        1,570,295        6,171,793
other % 5.6% 11.0% 12.9% 19.2% 9.5% 10.1%

As shown in Table 2, one-in-five West Bank recipients of UNRWA aid were not even descendants of people who fled the 1948 war zone.

This is a result of the active recruitment of “other” Arabs who UNRWA decided should get services from the bloated agency.

Table 3. Change from 2012 to 2019
UNRWA Recipients Totals

Change Jordan Lebanon Syria West Bank Gaza Total
Refugees 13.3% 8.9% 15.0% 16.4% 21.7% 15.6%
“Others” 97.5% 98.4% 253.2% 36.9% 198.3% 96.9%

As show in Table 3, while the Gaza “refugee” population grew by 21.7% over seven years, the “others” serviced by UNRWA TRIPLED. Overall, the refugee population grew by 15.6% while the “other” category almost doubled.

Who are these “Other” Non-Refugees?

UNRWA doesn’t hide the fact that in services other people. It considers itself a humanitarian organization, so it will give other people in need free education and healthcare. Why Syrians fleeing the terrible civil war come under the umbrella of UNRWA (growing by 253%!!) and not the UNHCR which cares for every other refugee in the world is a mystery that only the brains at UNRWA could answer.

In general, UNRWA breaks down the “other” category into six categories:

  • Jerusalem poor and Gaza poor. Just being poor – and their descendants! – entitles people to special relief from UNRWA.
  • Frontier Villagers. That’s a category, and all their descendants also get services from UNRWA.
  • Compromise Cases. Alas, these descendant to not get services
  • Family Members. If someone marries a refugee, then they get services and all adopted children get services. Quite the set up for the scam of the century.
  • Non-refugee wives. If you marry a refugee, you get special services.
  • Khafala children. Children who get Islamic care from a refugee or “other” get UNRWA services too, even if they or their ancestors were never refugees.

So many rich categories to choose from, it’s a wonder that the rolls only doubled in seven years and din’t quintuple.


UNRWA office in Jerusalem
(photo: First.One.Through)

UNRWA was created in 1950 as a TEMPORARY agency, but has managed to make itself a permanent fixture in the Arab-Israel conflict as it inflates the number of refugees and continuously adds to its beneficiaries and staffing. It is well past time to whittle it down to size.


Related First.One.Through articles:

What’s Wrong with UNRWA

The Gross OVER-Staffing of UNRWA Schools

UNRWA’s Munchausen Disease

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

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Shut UNRWA in Gaza Immediately

The arguments to defund and shut UNRWA are plentiful, but as the established and embedded “way of living,” (to quote Queen Rania of Jordan) of Palestinian Arabs in the five regions in which it operates, the process of closing the organization may take some time to implement.

But the time is now in Gaza.

  1. There is no basis for calling anyone in Gaza a “refugee.”

While the United Nations long ago abused the definition of “refugee” as something that can be passed down through generations like an inheritance uniquely for Palestinian Arabs, the situation in Gaza is all the more ridiculous. A “refugee” is not defined as someone that left a specific house. It refers to leaving a country.

Even under UNRWA’s contorted definition of a refugee, the Palestinian Arabs in Gaza are living in the same land and country that their parents and grandparents left at the time of the Jewish State’s reestablishment in 1948, as defined by UNRWA:

“persons whose normal place of residence was Palestine during the period 1 June 1946 to 15 May 1948, and who lost both home and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 conflict.”

“Palestine” between June 1946 and May 1948 included the areas now known as Israel, Gaza and the area commonly known as the “West Bank,” which was seized and annexed illegally by the Jordanians at the end of the 1948 conflict.

At best, the “refugees” in Gaza can be described as “internally-displaced” people.

  1. Independent

While the Arabs in the West Bank are also only descendants of internally-displaced people like those in Gaza, they have limited autonomy in much of the region. Only in Area A is the Palestinian Authority in charge of both the civilian and military life.

However, the situation is completely different in Gaza. Israel removed every Israeli civilian and soldier in 2005. For the first time in history, local Arabs in Gaza control their own territory. The Gazans held elections for president of the Palestinian Authority in 2005 and for parliament in 2006.

But UNRWA has stayed put in Gaza anyway.

  1. Taking Sides in an Armed Conflict

While the United Nations adoption of the Palestinian cause has long made the organization a biased actor in the Israeli-Palestinian Arab dispute, the situation is much more problematic in a war zone.

Hamas, the ruling government in Gaza is a designated terrorist organization according to many countries in the world including Israel, the United States, Canada and the European Union. Hamas has launched three full-blown wars against Israel since it took over the region: in 2008, 2012 and 2014. And the group has continued to incite and launch terrorist attacks against Israel during intervening “ceasefires.”

UNRWA does not sit in the middle as a neutral party in these battles. Over 99% of UNRWA employees are the local Palestinian Arabs, not European peace forces. UNRWA teachers have been active in the terrorism against a UN member state, building bombs for terrorist groups. They have allowed the schools to be used to store weapons and as missile launching sites.

And many of the students and their family members are part of the terrorist infrastructure itself, belonging to Hamas, Islamic Jihad and other groups.


Rocket launcher next to UN building in Hamas’s 2014 war against Israel
(source: UNWatch)

How can the United Nations continue to take an active – or at a minimum, abetting – role in terrorism and violence against a member state?

The world is finally waking up to the travesty that is UNRWA. The UN should take immediate action to close down all of the facilities that it operates in Gaza. #ShutUNRWA


Related First.One.Through articles:

UNRWA’s Ongoing War against Israel and Jews

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

The Gross OVER-Staffing of UNRWA Schools

UNRWA’s Munchausen Disease

UNRWA Is Not Just Making “Refugees,” It’s Creating Palestinians

The UN Must Pay to Repair the Gaza Fence

The United Nations Can Hear the Songs of Gazans, but Cannot See Their Rockets

The UN Wants “Real Stories on REAL Refugees”

The UN Fails on its Own Measures to address the Conditions Conducive to the Spread of Terrorism

Ban Ki Moon Stands with Gaza

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

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The “Great Myth of Return”

The Palestinian Arabs are engaged in a “protest” at the Gaza border with Israel to draw attention to their “Right of Return” to land in Israel. Pro-Palestinian organizations like Al Jazeera (Qatar) and Press TV (Iran) have produced videos related to the Arabs’ rights. The use of animation and live interviews however do nothing to educate people with actual facts, and how the claim of a Palestinian “Great March of Return” is a sham.

Global International Law

The United Nations developed a Universal Declaration of Human Rights that underscored the basic human rights that all people in the world possess. The UDHR states clearly in Article 13 that:

“1. Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the
borders of each State.
2. Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to
return to his country.”

Note that the relevant clause is that a person is entitled to leave his COUNTRY and then return to that country. For Jews, that means that the remaining survivors of the 850,000 people that were kicked out of Arab countries including Iraq, Egypt, Libya and Morocco have the basic human right to return to that country, should they so desire. However, the Stateless Arabs of Palestine (SAPs) have no such right, as Palestine was never a country but an administered region from 1924 to 1948.

The principle of returning to a house, land or town is not based on universal standards, but found in a niche resolution to address the SAPs several decades ago.

Specialized Resolution for Palestinian Arabs also Fail

On December 11, 1948, the United Nations General Assembly passed Resolution 194 in the middle of Israel’s War of Independence. Article 11 stated:

“Resolves that the refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible;”

This is the clause that the Palestinian narrative continues to call out, but it fails in many regards:

  • There are fewer than 30,000 “refugees” from 1948 are alive today. The millions of descendants that claim a right to return have no such claim as they are not refugees;
  • The actions of the Palestinians have clearly shown that they have no desire to “live at peace with their neighbors,” as evidenced by the many wars and terrorism waged against Israel, the election of a Holocaust denier to the presidency that pays people to kill Israeli Jews, and the election of the terrorist group Hamas to a majority of the Palestinian parliament

Further consider that the same UNGA Res 194 made other statements that the Palestinian Authority rejects, such as Articles 7 and 8:

“detailed proposals for a permanent international regime for the territory of Jerusalem…”

“Resolves that, in view of its association with three world religions, the Jerusalem area, including the present municipality of Jerusalem plus the surrounding villages and towns, the most eastern of which shall be Abu Dis; the most southern, Bethlehem; the most western, Ein Karim (including also the built-up area of Motsa); and the most northern, Shu’fat, should be accorded special and separate treatment from the rest of Palestine and should be placed under effective United Nations control;”

The Palestinians are seeking to turn eastern Jerusalem into its own capital, not a permanent UN town. The PA claims that it already has control of part of this Corpus Separatum – Bethlehem – which they took over in December 1995. Are the Palestinians going to abandon Bethlehem and scheme for eastern Jerusalem, or will they just cherry-pick from UN 194 to validate an invasion of Israel?


The UN’s Corpus Separatum from UN Resolution 181

One could possibly argue that around 30,000 SAPs over 70 years old who are interested in moving to Israel and living in peace should be allowed to do so, but the Friday protests at the Gaza border are full of young people. These people have no legal rights to move to Israel and their actions at the border constitute a threat of invasion and must be addressed on such basis. And if the PA acting president Mahmoud Abbas wants to quote UN Resolution 181 (which the entire Arab world rejected in 1947) and UN Resolution 194, he should be prepared to relinquish Bethlehem and dreams of eastern Jerusalem.

Palestinian Arabs’ “Great March of Return” is nothing more than the “Great MYTH of Return.”


Related First.One.Through articles:

Corpus Separatum Ended Forever in 1995

Stabbing the Palestinian “Right of Return”

Time to Dissolve Key Principles of the “Inalienable Rights of Palestinians”

Removing the Next Issue – The Return of 20,000 Palestinian Arabs

Losing Rights

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

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Removing the Next Issue – The Return of 20,000 Palestinian Arabs

When US President Donald Trump announced that the United States was recognizing the reality of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, many people argued that the move was much more than it was: the anti-Israel camp stated that it gave Israel something for nothing, while the pro-Israel camp celebrated the end of Jerusalem as a negotiating point in the Arab-Israel conflict.

Both points of view were incorrect.


US President Donald Trump recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel
December 6, 2017

The US decision was a simple matter of realizing the reality that Jerusalem has held all of the key government functions of the State of Israel since its founding. The Trump administration clarified that its decision to relocate the US embassy to Jerusalem did nothing to preordain the borders or status of Jerusalem in a mutually-agreed upon peace between the Israelis and the Palestinian Authority.

But maybe it is time to take some actions that take a critical issue off of the table, namely the “Right of Return” of Palestinian “refugees.”

On December 11, 1948, the United Nations General Assembly passed Resolution 194 which included a clause which Palestinian Arabs hold as a sacred truth in Article 11:

“Resolves that the refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible;

“Instructs the Conciliation Commission to facilitate the repatriation, resettlement and economic and social rehabilitation of the refugees and the payment of compensation, and to maintain close relations with the Director of the United Nations Relief for Palestine Refugees and, through him, with the appropriate organs and agencies of the United Nations;”

As of this time, there are fewer than 30,000 refugees related to UNGA resolution 194 that remain alive, nearly 70 years after the resolution’s passing. UNRWA, the UN agency tasked with providing services to the 1948 refugees (and later on, their descendants) was established one year later, on December 8, 1949. That UN agency ultimately created a completely unique distorted definition of a “refugee” to allow UNRWA to survive past its mandate and grow to accommodate the descendants of refugees.

But the bizarre abuse of the English language for UNRWA did nothing to alter the actual meaning of UN Resolution 194.

As a matter of moving the peace process forward, Israel should coordinate with the United Nations to assess which of the 1948 Palestinian Arab refugees seek to return to cities in Israel and live in peace with their Israeli neighbors, and which ones would prefer to receive compensation. As Israel does so, it need not ask anything of the Palestinian Authority in return.

Concluding one of the key agenda items of the Arab-Israeli conflict, the UN can hasten the dismantling of UNRWA and fold its functions into the global refugee agency, the UNHRC. The schools and hospitals of UNRWA would be transferred initially to UNHRC and then to the Palestinian Authority.  The refugee “camps” run by UNRWA would be dissolved into regular local neighborhoods.

The Trump administration has begun to take actions against the Palestinian Authority, including withholding funds to UNRWA. Israeli actions on the “right of return” can begin the process of ending the funding – and the UN agency – completely.


Related First.One.Through articles:

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

UNRWA Is Not Just Making “Refugees,” It Creates Palestinians

UNRWA’s Munchausen Disease

UNRWA’s Ongoing War against Israel and Jews

Stabbing the Palestinian “Right of Return”

Losing Rights

How the US and UN can Restart Relations with Israel

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

Time to Dissolve Key Principles of the “Inalienable Rights of Palestinians”

UN Summit for Refugees and Migrants September 2016

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UNRWA Is Not Just Making “Refugees,” It’s Creating Palestinians

It has been often reviewed how the United Nations has manufactured Palestinian Arab “refugees.” The fabrication done at the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has been via:

  • calling someone a “refugee” when they left a home or town, rather than a country which is the actual definition of a refugee;
  • allowing the descendants of those Palestinian Arab “refugees” to claim such status, even though no such status is conferred to other refugees;
  • Telling those refugees that they will return to homes that grandparents left decades ago, even when such homes no longer exist and not a goal of relief agencies;
  • Still calling such people “refugees,” even when they live in the same country that they claim to be refugees of, in the case of Palestinian Arabs living in Gaza and the West Bank

However, the NUMBER of Palestinian Arabs has not been reviewed, and particularly, how UNRWA has increased the number of Palestinian Arabs through its actions.

Fertility Rates in Undeveloped Areas

The UN has completed studies that show how more developed countries witness a much lower rate of birth and older population compared to less developed countries.

Development Stage:         Advanced           Less              Least
Annual rate of
population change                0.3%                1.4%              2.4%

Population age 0-14               16%                28%                40%

Maternal Mortality                0.01%            0.24%             0.44%

Undeveloped countries like Yemen and Sudan have very high birth rates, averaging over 4 children per mother. They similarly have a high maternal and infant mortality rates, as the level of healthcare in those countries is quite poor.

Not so for the healthcare of Palestinian Arabs, thanks to UNRWA.

UNRWA deploys billions of dollars every year to give the Palestinian Arabs the best healthcare in almost the entire world. As a result, despite the high birth rates in the Gaza Strip and West Bank, the mortality rates are a fraction witnessed throughout the region.

fertility vs mortality

Most of the mothers in the Middle East average between 1.5 and 3.0 children. Societies in Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Iran and Qatar average just below two children per mother according to the World Health Organization. The incidents of children under five years old dying was low in those countries, at roughly 1.0 to 1.5%. On the other end of the spectrum were countries under severe distress, including Sudan and Yemen. These countries with over four children on average per mother saw an expected rate of death for children under five years old of 6.0%, five times the rate of the more stable and advanced regions.

But the Palestinian Arabs are an anomaly. While Palestinian mothers average 4.1 children, according to the WHO, the probability of the children dying was the same as experienced in advanced Turkey or Saudi Arabia, at under 1.5%. Applying 2014 data of 121,330 Palestinian Arab births in Gaza and the West Bank, would suggest that 1,808 of these children will die before age 5, but the theoretical number without UNRWA intervention would be closer to that 6.0% percentage of Sudan and Yemen, or 7,280 deaths. That means that because of UNRWA, there will be 5,472 more Palestinian Arab children alive from the class of 2014.

Further adding the 0.2% improved rate of maternal mortality represents approximately 240 mothers each year that do not pass away due to UNRWA’s efforts. In total, considering that UNRWA has been operating for close to 70 years through multiple generations, the number of incremental Palestinian Arabs living in Gaza and the West Bank because of UNRWA is close to 1 million.

Future Action: Jobs versus Contraception

The United Nations created a document together with the Palestinian Authority called “Palestine 2030 – Demographic Change” which told an interesting narrative and plan for the Palestinian demographic boom.

The opening lines of the report bemoaned the slow rate of the population growth: “Palestine’s demographic transition particularly its fertility component, continues to lag behind that of many Asia countries, including Arab countries… Fertility, which was extremely high in the 1970s has been cut in half.” A shocking statement compared to the statistics listed above.

The report continued to discuss the connection between fertility rates and education and income. “Very universal marriage, early marriage, and a low contraceptive rate, especially for modern methods of contraception (used by 44%), are the main proximate determinants of the present level of fertility. Household wealth also plays a role. But it is mainly education, particularly female education that determines the fertility rate.

The report estimates that the Palestinian Arab population in Gaza and the West Bank will grow from 4.7 million in 2015, to 6.9 million in 2030 and 9.5 million in 2050. The doubling of the Palestinian population between 2015 and 2050 compares to a global growth rate of just 36%. The high Palestinian rate of growth is only anticipated in the large poor African countries like Chad, Uganda and Tanzania. Consider further that the number of “refugees” in the GS/WB areas is forecast to grow from roughly 2 million today to 3 million in 2030 and 4.5 million in 2050 (+125% for refugees and +85% for non-refugees). UNRWA clearly impacts the population growth, with estimates of “creating” an additional 800,000 Palestinian Arabs by 2050.

Those are staggering figures for a small territory.

And yet the report claims that the solution to the population boom is not population control, but more jobs and education for women.

If the United Nations is on the front lines of health services in the Palestinian territories, why is the use of contraception only at 44%, when it stands at 64% in the rest of the world where women have to obtain, purchase and manage their health on their own? Why isn’t UNRWA doing more education about family planning and making more contraceptives available?  It is estimated that 7.0% and 5.0% of Palestinians use the pill and condoms, respectively. Shouldn’t the rate be double or triple, more in line with Lebanon (15.1% pill) and Turkey (15.9% condoms)? Overall contraceptive use should be targeted at 75%, in line with the Islamic Republic of Iran at 76.6%.

The UN General Assembly made a global goal of comprehensive family planning in its 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in which it set out “universal access to sexual and reproductive health-care services, including for family planning, information and education, and the integration of reproductive health into national strategies and programmes.” With thousands of feet on the ground in Gaza and the West Bank, the UN is in prime position to take an aggressive stance.

Palestinian Arabs have extremely high fertility rates similar to third world countries but receive first-class healthcare from the United Nations. In doing so, UNRWA has helped the Palestinian Arab population balloon by an incremental one million people, or 25%. Will the UN advance its own global family planning goals for Palestinian Arabs, or does it prefer to create a demographic army to confront Israel?


Related First.One.Through articles:

Help Refugees: Shut the UNRWA, Fund the UNHCR

UNRWA’s Ongoing War against Israel and Jews

How the US and UN can Restart Relations with Israel

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

Time to Dissolve Key Principles of the “Inalienable Rights of Palestinians”

An Inconvenient Truth: Population Statistics in Israel/Palestine

Mad World of Palestinian Quality of Life Statistics

Arabs in Jerusalem

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Time to Dissolve Key Principles of the “Inalienable Rights of Palestinians”

During the Palestinian hijacking heydays of the 1970’s, the United Nations passed an infamous resolution equating Zionism as a form of racism. While particularly odious during the years until its repeal in 1991, the underlying anti-Zionism has remained a plague at the global forum. Part of the disease lies in timeless antisemitism, while part is a fault of the flawed approach to settling the “Question of Palestine” that the UN endorsed and has continued to exacerbate.

On November 22, 1974 the UN General Assembly passed A/RES/3236 (XXIX). That resolution became the baseline of the “inalienable rights of the Palestinian people” that expanded and evolved until the present day. The text is distorted at its core, with declarations without equivalents nor precedent. The rights enumerated are gross exaggerations that cannot – and should not – ever be met.

While the resolution had a kernel of truth, it was overwhelmed with fatal flaws:

“no just solution to the problem of Palestine has yet been achieved and recognizing that the problem of Palestine continues to endanger international peace and security,”

If the Middle East has taught the world anything since the resolution was passed in 1974, it is that the Arab and Muslim nations do not need the “question of Palestine” to endanger the global community. Whether it was a war between Iran and Iraq or Iraq and Kuwait, civil wars in Lebanon, Syria, Yemen or Libya, or the terrorism in Niger, Chad, Egypt and Ethiopia, the Arab violence is seeded from and breeds its own hatreds.

“the Palestinian people is entitled to self-determination in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations”

This is probably the only true statement in the resolution of which anyone concerned with peace in the Middle East would like to see achieved. The Stateless Arabs from Palestine (SAPs) should have citizenship somewhere. When this resolution was drafted, they had Jordanian citizenship, which was given to them in 1954 but repealed by Jordan in 1988. The Israelis also offered the Palestinian Arabs in Jerusalem citizenship, but only a few thousand Arabs have taken it. A broader solution should be found.

“Expressing its grave concern that the Palestinian people has been prevented from enjoying its inalienable rights, in particular its right to self-determination,”

As noted above, the Palestinian Arabs in the West Bank had Jordanian citizenship and Israel offered Jerusalem Arabs citizenship, but it must be noted that the Arabs in Gaza were not afforded Egyptian citizenship. Was this resolution language only related to Gazans? Did it also cover the Arabs in the West Bank, since Yasser Arafat (fungus be upon him) failed to overthrow the Jordanian monarchy in 1970?

“1. Reaffirms the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people in Palestine, including:
(a) The right to self-determination without external interference;”

What does the phrase “without external interference” mean? That they will not be a puppet state like Lebanon is to Syria? That they won’t become a terrorist group like Hezbollah with the backing of Iran? That Palestinian Arabs are entitled to have a full-standing army that could attack Israel? When Turkey and Qatar backed Hamas in Gaza, was that considered “external interference?”

“(b) The right to national independence and sovereignty;”

This is a key fatal flaw of the 1974 resolution, which has regrettably been elaborated upon over the decades: There is no such inalienable right to independence and sovereignty. For anyone.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights established in 1948 enumerated dozens of rights that every human on the planet must have. Article 15 of the UDHR stated that “everyone has a right to a nationality.” That is it. A nationality, not a new specialized new one. Are the Kurds getting a unique UN resolution for their “independence and sovereignty?” Is Tibet? What about Western Sahara? The SAPs should have a nationality, but they have absolutely no inalienable right to national independence and sovereignty.

“2. Reaffirms also the inalienable right of the Palestinians to return to their homes and property from which they have been displaced and uprooted, and calls for their return;”

There is no basis in the rights of mankind to afford the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of people who left homes many decades ago to return to such homes. Especially homes that no longer exist.

Article 13 of the UDHR stated that “everyone has a right to leave any country, including his own, and return to his country.” A COUNTRY. Not a town. Not a house. Only to the country of which they were a citizen. The grandparents of today’s SAPs were not Israeli citizens when they left, and the SAPs today most certainly are not Israelis.

If this is a real issue, are the 1 million Jews that were displaced from Muslim Arab countries getting the right to return to their homes and to recover all of their property? Not only did the Jews leave homes and property, but they actually left A COUNTRY. I have yet to see any UN General Assembly resolution drafted asking for such “inalienable right” for the Jews from Arab lands. Maybe Yemen is working on a draft resolution now.

“3. Emphasizes that full respect for and the realization of these inalienable rights of the Palestinian people are indispensable for the solution of the question of Palestine;

The question of Palestine revolves around giving the SAPs citizenship – either in a new country of Palestine or Israel or Jordan or somewhere. Returning to homes and property is neither a right nor part of “the solution.”

“6. Appeals to all States and international organizations to extend their support to the Palestinian people in its struggle to restore its rights, in accordance with the Charter;”

This UN resolution called for the countries of the world to “support the Palestinian people in its struggle.” Such a statement is not just a flawed call for rights that do not exist as detailed above, but a call to take sides in the conflict. It declared that “all States” should work against Israel. How could the UN possibly imagine that Israel would ever take any UNGA resolution seriously, after declaring openly that it is a biased party in the dispute?


Palestinian flag at the United Nations in New York


The Israelis and Palestinian Authority were last able to reach mutual agreements when they signed the Oslo Accords in 1993 and 1995. Those agreements NEVER mentioned a “two state solution” anywhere. They also do not mention any rights to “homes and property,” just the generic issue of “refugees.” And the accords do not ask the world to advocate on behalf of fake “inalienable rights.”

On December 17, 1991, the UNGA finally rescinded the Zionsim is racism resolution after intensive lobbying and threats by the United States under President George Bush. At that time, US Deputy Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger said that rescinding the resolution improved the “reputation for fairness and impartiality” of the UN. It arguably helped create the environment for the Oslo Accords.

It is similarly time to rescind UNGA Resolution 3236 and to put the parties on a course for an enduring peace that is actually achievable, with a fair and responsible United Nations as a facilitator as oppose to a perpetual hindrance.


Related First.One.Through articles:

The United Nations’ Adoption of Palestinians, Enables It to Only Find Fault With Israel

The United Nations’ Remorse for “Creating” Israel

Losing Rights

Ban Ki Moon Defecates on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The UN’s Disinterest in Jewish Rights at Jewish Holy Places

Delivery of the Fictional Palestinian Keys

A “Viable” Palestinian State

The UN’s #Alternative Facts about the 1967 Six Day War

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