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Where is the American Indian PLO?

Reader comment on item: To End the [Palestinian] Violence

Submitted by Shep Fargotstein (United States), Jan 15, 2003 at 11:40

In the ill-fated Munich Pact signed with Hitler in 1938, Britain's Chamberlain surrendered to Germany's demand to annex the Sudetenland, a part of Czechoslovakia, inhabited by Germans for centuries. The Nazis soon occupied the whole country, and then invaded Poland.

Liberated by the Allies in 1945, the Czechs regained the Sudetenland, expelling 2.5 million of its ethnic Germans to Germany as authorized at the Potsdam Conference.
There is a parallel between the German Sudets and the Palestinian refugees - except that the latter refuse to accept the universal code that aggressors must pay for their acts.

A final agreement between the Germans and the Czechs was signed in December 1946, recognizing that the German Sudets were expelled on the understanding that they were pro-Nazi and, as such, enemies of the Czechs. Both sides agreed that the German Sudets would receive neither compensation nor apology. During the ensuing Cold War, the descendants of these Germans demanded to return to their "ancestral homeland" - but in vain.

Had the Palestinians accepted the 1948 UN partition resolution instead of waging an aggressive war, there would have been no refugees.... The initial refugee problem of 1948 was exacerbated when Egypt and Syria launched their failed Six Day War against Israel in 1967.... Never before in history have those who lost wars of aggression been deemed equal partners in the negotiation, and for good reason - aggressors should not have incentives for perpetrating acts of aggression.

The Palestinian refugees are victims, but not of Israel. Rather, they are the victims of wars launched - ostensibly for them - by the Arab states, but for which they pay the price. They are the victims, effectively, of Arab aggression against Israel.

The Palestinian refugee problem is allowed - even forced - to continue and to grow. Of the approximately 135 million refugees created over the last century, only the Palestinians have retained this dismal, nationless status. Every other major refugee group has been resettled within a generation.

Whether the Palestinian refugees have been denied resettlement by tragic oversight, or devious design, the Arab world should take responsibility by resettling them, and paying substantial restitution for the damages inflicted on them over the past by 54 years.
With the Palestinian conflict out of the way, the world should be able to, presumably, focus on other issues without the Palestinian issue dominating – and providing an excuse for – much of the violence coming from that part of the world.

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