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Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Cairo speech Obama should give

If President Obama really wanted to bring peace to the Middle East, this is the speech he ought to go to Cairo to give, but never will:

Since the 1948 war they started, the Arab states have kept the resulting refugees (and generation after generation of their children) in squalid camps, lest their resettlement be deemed an acceptance of Israel. The refugees in Lebanon have not been given rights to hold property, obtain higher education, or work in numerous professions, much less the right of citizenship in the country in which they have lived all or most of their lives over six decades. Instead, they are kept in a culture of dependency served by UNRWA — a “temporary” UN agency formed in 1949, now a bloated bureaucracy in its seventh decade and funded primarily by the U.S. and other Western countries.

The refugee problem will not be solved by “negotiations” between Israel and Mahmoud Abbas. The solution will require a fundamental change in perspective — one that might begin if a U.S. president were ever to travel to Cairo and call for an end to UNRWA, in a speech that would term the treatment of Arab refugees by Arab countries an affront to human rights, and that would end by challenging the leaders of the Arab countries to “tear down those camps.”



At 9:46 AM, Blogger Eliana said...

It would be easier to convince the Arab world that they are living on Mars than it would be to get them to accept responsibility for the plight of the Arabs who call themselves "Palestinians" or to get them to accept Israel's existence either, for that matter.

They live in their own mental universe where up is down (much of the time) and they don't care.

At 4:25 PM, Blogger Juniper in the Desert said...

Eliana is right.

Being a hawk myself, I feel the only thing the arabs/muslims understand is brute force.

Everything else is considered weakness.


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