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Countering Bias and Misinformation mainly about the Arab-Israel conflict

Arab intellectuals on the Palestinian refugee question

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Kuwaiti daily 
On the Impossible Idea of the Right of Return.
March 5, 2007
Saudi columnist Yousef Nasser Al-Sweidan wrote in the Kuwaiti daily Al-Siyassa, March 5, 2007, under the title "On the Impossible [Idea] of the Right of Return."

. . . Clearly, the refugee problem is mainly the result of cumulative mistakes made by the countries where [the refugees] live . . . which have isolated the refugees in poor and shabby camps lacking the most basic conditions for a dignified human existence.

The Israelis, on the other hand, were civilized and humane in their treatment of the thousands of Jewish refugees who had lost their property, homes and businesses in the Arab countries, and were forced to emigrate after the 1948 war. The Israeli government received them, helped them, and provided them with all the conditions to become integrated in their new society . . .
[With acknowledgement to MEMRI - Special Dispatch April 12, 2007.]

The Refugees Don't Need Another 60 Years of Misery

Al-Siyassa (Kuwait), March 16, 2007.

 

In a second article, titled "Naturalization is the Solution," Al-Sweidan wrote: "There is no doubt that the Palestinian refugees in Syria and Lebanon - who have for many long years been fed by their Arab hosts on impossible dreams and on shiny promises that were soon broken - do not need another 60 years of misery, wretchedness and suffering... in order to figure out for the thousandth time that all the talk about the 'bridge of return' is [nothing but] nonsense and deceit - a fairytale that exists only in the old, worn-out demagogy of the Arab propaganda...

 

"In reality, there is no 'bridge [of return]'... except for the bridge that we now must pass... called the peace process and normalization of relations between the Arabs and Israel. Undoubtedly, the Arabs cannot continue to avoid the implementation [of the peace process], which brooks no further delay. [Any delay] will have a heavy price for the Arab societies in the present and in the future, considering the sharp strategic changes [occurring] in the Middle East. [These changes] demand an immediate and final solution to the Arab-Israeli conflicts, and [require] the two sides to direct their joint energies and efforts towards confronting the Iranian nuclear threat which imperils us all."

 

The Inevitable Solution is to Naturalize the Refugees in the Host Countries

"As the Middle East peace process gains momentum, and as the regional and international forces remain committed to the need to resolve this [conflict]... there is a growing necessity for a realistic, unavoidable and bold decision that will provide a just solution to the problem of the Palestinian refugees by naturalizing them in the host countries, such as Syria, Lebanon, and other countries.

 

"Even though this is a humanitarian [project], it requires intensive efforts on the legislative, economic, logistic, and administrative levels, in order to integrate the Palestinians organically into the social, economic and political fabric of the Arab societies...

 

"By every conceivable and accepted criterion, naturalizing the refugees [in the Arab countries] is the inevitable solution to [this] chronic humanitarian problem. The fact that [this solution] constitutes an important part of the overall peace process and of the historic reconciliation between the Arabs and the Israelis will help to reinforce [the naturalization process] and to perpetuate it."

 


 

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