Anyone who lived in the British Mandate for Palestine for as little as only two years in 1948 could claim refugee status as “Palestinians,” as well as their offspring. They are the only refugees in the world whose subsequent generations can claim refugee status, people who have never even stepped foot in the land. A little known fact is that most of these so-called refugees left on their own accord and after being recent immigrants in the land to begin with. What kind of a refugee is that?
Imagine living your entire life in the United States. Then you move to Italy and live there for two years- (or less- according to the Palestinian National Charter, anyone who lived in Palestine until 1947 is Palestinian, meaning, if they arrived the last day of 1946, they qualify). Finally, some land swaps go on, and you must leave. The UN decides to call you an “Italian” refugee, as well as your children and your grandchildren and even their children. Are you Italian? Or are you really American after all?
Now imagine that you and other American ex-pats had been harassing the real native Italians ever since you arrived in their land, evening murdering innocent people. And in fact when the reorganization of the land occurred, you did not leave but fought in a war against the native Italians- but you lost and then had to leave. You were offered your own state but turned it down. Who is to blame for you becoming a so-called refugee? If you were given an offer but turned it down, went to war but lost, you really don’t have a leg to stand on if you cry about injustice.
The big question is, why are these people still refugees anyway after 65 years? If a refugee comes to the US, after 5 years, he can apply for citizenship. If his children are born on American soil, those kids are automatically American citizens. Not so with Palestinians. Their Arab brethren refuse to give them citizenship, choosing instead to use them as pawns in this political battle. And the Palestiniansthemselves prefer this as well since as special “Palestinian” refugees, they get a unique type of welfare from the UN which no other refugee in the world receives. This way, their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren can live off the UN and claim victimization for the rest of their lives.
Meanwhile, there were far more Jewish refugees from Arab nations during the same time period who lost billions more in money and property than the Palestinians who mostly left voluntarily because the surrounding Arab countries advised them to leave since they were about to go to war with the newly re-created Israel. The Jewish refugees, however, had no choice. They were forcibly expelled after their homes, jobs and property were taken away, their bank accounts frozen.
So what is a Palestinian refugee? Good question. There should be no such thing. What is a Jewish refugee from Arab countries? That is what needs to be examined now. Arab nations deny this truth because it shows the hypocrisy. But there are many Jews who lived through this. The only difference is that Israel welcomed them with open arms while the Arab nations did not want to take responsibility for their own brethren. But this does not justify anything, nor should it get them off the hook for persecuting Jews whose families had lived in those nations for generations upon generations. In other words, no one remembers the Jewish refugees only because Israeltook care of them. The reason why “Palestinian refugees” exist is because their Arab brethren have not taken them in. They are not the responsibility of Israel. They lost the war and have been offered their own state many times. The issue of “Palestinian refugees” is a non-issue. They only have themselves to blame.