205. Arabs use Palestinian refugees as pawns
 
In “Local man takes on refugee plight” (Feb. 13) staff writer Shawn Cohen provides no background to allow understanding of the refugee situation.
 
In 1947, when the United Nations agreed to create separate Jewish and Arab states, the entire Arab world rejected the partition plan and in 1948, declared war on the State of Israel. As a result, two refugee groups – not one – were created, more or less of equal size. At the same time Arab leaders sought to destroy the Jewish state, they forced more than 700,000 Jews their property ransacked in deadly riots, to flee for their lives from their Arab homelands. They did not languish in refugee camps because Israel and Western nations absorbed these dispossesses Jews.
 
The Arab states turned their backs on their brethren who fled. For 53 years, these people have been quarantined in squalid camps sustained by U.N. and American and Arab and Palestinian leaders, while professing concern for the suffering, use them as political pawns in their endless war against Israel. Only one Arab country, Jordan, has extended citizenship to the Palestinians.
 
The Palestinian refugees remain victims because their leaders continue to use them for their violent and deadly goal to destroy Israel.
 
March 2, 2001
G.D. Lewit, Scarsdale

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