With the recent breakdown of another iteration of attempts to “make forward progress” in Palestinian-Israeli negotiations, many have remarked on the basic intractability of the issues that divide the two. Among these, the disposition of the Palestinian refugees remains a focal point as a “redline” concern for both sides. The long-politicized historical narrative of the Palestinian refugees has taken center stage, sidelining attempts to inject objectivity or practicality into the negotiations.

But the ingrained blame-game pattern that interminably seeks to tease out who bears the “original sin” of culpability for the crisis misses a crucial piece of the puzzle.

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