Sunday, November 22, 2015

Refugees? All About Them

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                       
UNRWA Building in Gaza City 

Not until after WWI was the protection of refugees first recognized as an international responsibility.  Millions of people found themselves as refugees and had to leave their country because of Political, racial or religious persecutions.
In 1921, Dr. Fridtjot  Nansen was appointed by the League of Nations as high commissioner for Russian and Armenian refugees.He created an identity certificate and a travel document for refugees.  This was called the Nansen passport.                           

The protection of refugees was continued by the Nansen Office of the League of Nations after his death.  In 1933 an international convention was held to prescribe their status.  Nazi persecutions were happening in this year causing another high commissioner of the League to be appointed for Jewish and other refugees from Germany.

James G. MacDonald, the first high commissioner, resigned after 2 years because of inadequate action by the members of the League.  Even his successor was restricted to the juridical protection of refugees.
In 1938, President Roosevelt of the USA convened a conference of government representatives at Evian to help with the emigration and resettlement of refugees.

By 1939, a most disastrous year for German Jews, the high commissioner for German refugees became director of the inter-governmental committee and responsible for all refugees under the protection of the League.  This is when Werner Oster, age 22, German Jew, left Germany but only because my great uncle had signed a paper to sponsor him in the USA.  He got my father to employ him, and he later became my uncle.  It was very expensive for Werner to be able to leave Germany, costing his parents a lot of money. He immigrated on ship SS Washington; costs $M350.  to New York, then Texas.

 His father had served in the German army and was a decorated soldier in the service of the Kaiser Wilhelm II, but was forced to scrub the streets because he was a Jew.  Many wore their uniforms while doing this to show people they had been good citizens.  Remember this fact when you feel secure in the USA.  Jews had lived in Germany since before 70 CE.  As it turns out, the Kaiser was anti-Semitic. He was for  ""regular international all-worlds pogrom à la Russe" as "the best cure" and further believed that Jews were a "nuisance that humanity must get rid of some way or other."  " I believe the best thing would be gas!"he said."  So much for being a patriotic soldier in Germany!  
1941 Anti-Semitic Germany needed little prodding from Haj Amin al-Husseini
to keep Jews out of  Palestine. They thought up the "Final Solution."

During WWII, which commenced in Europe at about this time, the high commissioner worked to relieve refugees who were outside the Nazi occupied territories and improve the conditions of emigration.

The war was over by 1947 when the League office and the committee were replaced by an arm of the United Nations.  It was the International Refugee Organization which was a non-permanent specialized agency.

When Israel announced its birth after gaining the approval of the League of Nations and the United Nations again on May 14, 1948 and was summarily attacked on all sides by the Arabs, there became the problem of Arab refugees who had left their homes at the advice of their leaders who were attacking Israel.  The leaders wanted them out of the way of the barrage of bullets and ammunition.  They figured they would win quickly and the Arabs could then move into the Jews' homes if they wanted to.  Refugees concentrated themselves into Jordan and the Gaza Strip at this time.  They now became the concern of a non-permanent  specialized agency of the UN-UNRWA- United Nations Relief and Works Agency.
                                     The UNWRA definition of Palestinian refugees is "
    UNRWA definition of Palestinian refugees: “People whose normal place of residence was Palestine between June 1946 and May 1948, who lost both their homes and means of livelihood as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli conflict.” As a rule, those displaced after 1948 do not qualify for UNRWA assistance."  Israel begged them not to leave, but their leaders' words meant more to them.  
    A census taken in Palestine in 1945 found only 756,000 permanent Arab residents in what was to become Israel.  On November 30, 1947, the date the UN voted for partition, the total was 809,100.  The government of Israel took a census in 1949 and counted 160,000 Arabs living in the country after the war.  This means 650,000 Palestinian Arabs had become refugees.  A report by the UN Mediator on Palestine arrived at an even lower figure--472,000.  

    The problem with the UNRWA definition is that Britain held  the mandate for 30 years.  In the late 30's when Jews were trying to get out of Germany, they couldn't get into Palestine where the Brits were to help Jews create the Jewish Homeland.  Instead, the Brits were allowing all the Arabs to enter. Jews couldn't enter other countries because they had to have baptism  certification, and being Jews, wouldn't have this.  That's why there were even that many at this point in time.  When Mark Twain toured Palestine in the late 1800s, there were hardly any he could find.  
    Is this why Gaza children are taught to hate Israelis in school? 
    I see nothing to have helped the same amount of Jews living in Arab lands who were forced out at the creation of Israel in 1948.  They fled to Israel and were taken in, first to live in tents, then finally regular housing.  They had been a people held back from progress that many of the Ashkenazi Jews had experienced.  They had much catching-up to do.  Living in Arab lands meant they were Dhimmis, 2nd or 3rd class Jews, not allowed certain privileges, like education, etc.  But that was what Israel was created for, a haven for its Jews, and so they took on the responsibility with loans from the USA to get by.  
    The USA has paid most of the "over a billion dollars in UNRWA funds over the last 30+ years  up to 1984 for what was to have been "temporary relief before resettlement of 652,000 Arabs."  Since 1984, the $ is in the billions.  "$400 million a year goes to support the UNRWA’s promotion of terrorism; our government also redistributes a staggering $5 billion per annum to Palestinians: the people carrying out the yet another intifada, the people who elected Hamas – a formally designated terrorist organization under American law – to govern Gaza, and the people whose U.S.-supported Palestinian Authority has voluntarily formed a unity government with Hamas." - 
    That isn't the only source of money for them.  "American Friends of UNRWA (UNRWA USA) is an independent 501c3 nonprofit that supports the humanitarian and human development work of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) through fundraising, advocacy, and outreach. UNRWA USA aims to educate the general American public about the situation of Palestine refugees and generate support for UNRWA's work in Gaza, the West Bank, Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan."  They are now counting 5 million Arabs as Palestinian Arabs under the UNRWA umbrella.                                                  
    Such growth in numbers means that "UNRWA provides facilities in 59 recognized refugee camps in Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, and in other areas where large numbers of registered Palestine refugees live outside of recognized camps.  They must all be labeled as refugees.  "With a total of $644,701,999 in contributions, the US, EU, UK, Sweden, Norway, Germany, The Netherlands and Japan pay 71% of the annual UNRWA budget." This has been going on since Israel was voted in as a state in 1948, 67 years .  
     Zuheir Muhsein 1936-1979, assassinated in France
    In 1974, PLO Syrian leader, Zuheir Muhsein said in a PLO strategy discussion that many nations had already accepted the calculated interchange of images of the Arabs.  He saw the Arabs had managed to juxtapose the Israeli existence with a Palestinian one.  He explained the proposed "Independent Palestinian State" to be on the "West Bank", which was actually the ancient site of Israel and Judah.
         "Our purpose is a democratic State in the whole of Palestine.....(this means taking over Israel).  A State in the occupied areas will not constitute an obstacle.  The contrary is true---it will be a point of departure.....This State will be the backbone of our struggle against Israel."  
    Arab states keep the Palestinian Arab refugee in camps dependent on UNRWA.  They are not allowed to enter their state to find work or living.  UNRWA has padded the list of people.  In 1961, John Davis, their Director, admitted that the refugee counts include other victims of the conflict of 1948 and that he thought it would be wrong to deny them aid merely because they weren't legally qualified.  Therefore, UNRWA contributed to further distortion of the already misrepresented and misunderstood refugee situation.  
    The Arabs take the credit for having prevented Israel to be created earlier, before World War II.  Then the final solution to the Jewish problem might have been having their haven, not a Holocaust.  That's why the Jewish leaders started proceedings to have their own state before WWI had ended.  They saw the mood of the lands, and knew that finally, the day had come.  They could not depend on the goodness that they found lacking in countries to allow them to live in peace.  2,000 years of such a life was enough.  They had prayed to be again in Jerusalem and this is where they needed to go.  
    Jews had been refugees after WWII.  They knew what it was like.  They did not expect the Arabs to put themselves in such a position, but they did by listening to their leaders who wanted them to be pitiful in order to gain sympathy and to make people feel repugnance for the Jews.                                                     
    Herzl 1860-1904, born in Budapest, studied in Vienna, the Paris correspondent 
    Theodor Herzl, newspaper reporter, had plans for the Jewish State when he wrote in 1896 Der Judenstaat.  "Palestine is our unforgettable historic homeland. . . Let me repeat once more my opening words: The Jews who will it shall achieve their State. We shall live at last as free men on our own soil, and in our own homes peacefully die. The world will be liberated by our freedom, enriched by our wealth, magnified by our greatness. And whatever we attempt there for our own benefit will redound mightily and beneficially to the good of all mankind.
    This has come true.  Israel has shared with mankind all its inventions.  The Arab refugees were offered a state in 1947 and consecutive years after that but have refused.  While Israel lives and creates and shares its magnificence amid shelling of rockets, missiles and mortars, the refugees multiply in refugee camps and relive the Middle Ages.  Do not let this happen with today's refugees where their camps are like a chess game to hold against you.  
    Syria was made up of 22,505,000 people before the Arab Spring. In 2009, Damascus had a population of 1.711 million people.   90% were Muslims of both Sunni and Shi'a.   Iraq had 31,234,000 with 97% Shi'a/Sunni.  Lebanon, a small country, had 4,196,453 with only 60% Muslims of Sunni/Shi'a.  They had had a large group of Christians who used to be the rulers.  

    Obama has 190 cities selected to take in 10,000 Syria refugees. " Last year we took in 36.  "Of the more than 500 Syrian refugees brought to the U.S. so far this past year, 90 % of them have been Muslim,", Corcoran said..  Were they vetted during the past 2 years before allowed entrance?  Is that even possible?  

    Resource: Letters From A Syrian Jew Trapped in Egypt: story of escaping Civil War in Syria, with what happened in cities in Syria, Muslim Brotherhood, by Nadene Goldfoot

           From Time Immemorial-the origins of the Arab-Jewish conflict over Palestine by Joan Peters.

          Myths and Facts-a concise record of the Arab-Israeli conflict by Mitchell G. Bard, Joel Himelfarb
        The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia   

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