The Arab world's dirty little secretLast week, Lebanon passed legislation that allows the 400,000 'Palestinians' living in that country for the first time to work in many - but still not all - professions. The Wall Street Journal notes that the Arab countries' treatment of their 'Palestinian' brethren - Lebanon's previous law was typical - is one of the deep, dark secrets of the Arab world.
The dirty little secret of the Arab world is that it has consistently treated Palestinians living in its midst with contempt and often violence. In 1970, Jordan expelled thousands of Palestinian militants after Yasser Arafat attempted a coup against King Hussein. In 1991, Kuwait expelled some 400,000 Palestinians working in the country as punishment for Arafat's support for Saddam Hussein in the first Gulf War.Indeed.
For six decades, Palestinians have been forced by Arab governments to live in often squalid conditions so that they could serve as propaganda tools against Israel, even as millions of refugees elsewhere have been repatriated and absorbed by their host countries. This month's vote still falls short of giving Palestinian Lebanese the rights they deserve, including citizenship. But it's a reminder of the cynicism of so much Arab pro-Palestinian propaganda, and the credulity of those who fall for it.