The United Nations Relief and Work Agency is the only UN refugee agency
dedicated to a single group of people. It is the only agency that designates
individuals as original refugees if they lived in the area for a minimum of two
years, that acknowledges the descendants of original refugees as refugees as
well, and the only one that actively encourages its clients to act on their
“right of return.”
Since WWII, 50 million people have been displaced by
The Palestinian people are the only ones in history to
receive this special treatment.
Before describing why UNRWA is a body
that drastically reduces any chance of a lasting peace, let’s take a look at
whose citizens are funding UNWRA. After all, there is no such thing as public
money, there is only taxpayers’ money.
The total UNRWA budget for 2012
was $907,907,371. The permanent and hysterically supportive rhetoric for the
“Palestinian cause” from the Muslim world might lead one to expect that UNWRA is
mainly funded by Muslim countries. The truth, however, is that UNRWA is almost
entirely funded by Western taxpayers. With a total of $644,701,999 in
contributions, the US, EU, UK, Sweden, Norway, Germany, The Netherlands and
Japan pay 71 percent of the annual UNRWA budget.
And don’t forget that
the funds from the second-largest donor, the EU, are of course already composed
of EU taxation of member states.
So where do the Muslim states rank?
First in, at No. 15, is Saudi Arabia.
The country with palaces for every
prince and gold-plated Boeing 747s on the royal runways chipped in $12,030,540,
less than half the contribution of a tiny country like The
Second, at No. 18, is Turkey. The supposedly economically
flourishing state, whose prime minister zealously supports even Hamas,
contributes only $8,100,000. Qatar, which spent millions on obtaining the 2022
soccer World cup, contributed exactly $0 to their Palestinian
In essence, these figures reflect the nature of the role Muslim
countries play in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.
In their rhetoric
they are permanently hostile toward Israel and very sympathetic to the
Palestinians, fond of slogans like: “Free Palestine,” which is still basically a
euphemism for “Destroy Israel.” This strengthens the Palestinian leadership’s
resolve to say no to peace, whenever the occasion arises. But the non-existence
of peace perpetuates Palestinian agony.
On the other hand, Muslim states
do not deliver when it comes to the material needs of the
This too perpetuates Palestinian suffering.
only conclude that the role of most Muslim states in the conflict is a
subversive one, aimed at the perpetuation of Palestinian
Muslim states abuse Palestinian suffering to divert attention
from their own deficiencies and they use the Palestinian people as pawns in a
perverted game of chess against Israel.
Now that we know where the money
does and does not come from, let’s review how UNWRA spends it. Just a minor
detail to keep in mind along the way: The personal wealth of Palestinian
Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is estimated at $100 million.
Bedein, director of the Center for Near East Policy Research, recently released
a rather disturbing documentary, Camp Jihad, about UNWRA-funded summer camps for
The entire focus of the camps is on emphasizing the
children’s right of return to the villages their grandparents are said to have
lived in. And the means to achieve this? Jihad.
Some scenes from the
camp: A women in full burqa tells children to tell her where they are from. They
respond with Jaffa, Haifa and so on.
But these children have never been
to these places. Then the woman shouts: “We will return to our villages with
power and honor. With God’s help and our own strength we will wage war and with
education and jihad we will return!” Another group of even younger children was
told by a woman in traditional clothing that: “Our grandparents were having a
BBQ on the beach, and then a wolf appeared.
Who was the wolf? The Jews.
What did the Jews do to us? They expelled and deported us. They killed us and
shot our families.”
The hateful indoctrination of youngsters is a
perverted and criminal act, but is it is nonetheless being funded by Western –
including my Dutch – governments.
It has to stop. The West cannot
possibly accept that its tax money is being used to poison children’s
But besides summer camps like these, the whole notion of UNWRA
might be counterproductive. If an entire nation lives on an international
welfare check, there’s little incentive for effective nation building. And even
worse, when the current conflict is the only reason for the annual welfare check
that pays PA leaders, there isn’t much incentive for ending the conflict,
But there’s something more fundamental at play. Gunnar Heinsohn’s
book Sons and World Power explores the correlation between war and the number of
males in a society and states: “In such ‘youth bulge’ countries, young men tend
to eliminate each other or get killed in aggressive wars until a balance is
reached between their ambitions and the number of acceptable positions available
in their society.
“In Arab nations such as Lebanon (150,000 dead in the
civil war between 1975 and 1990) or Algeria (200,000 dead in the Islamists’ war
against their own people between 1999 and 2006), the slaughter abated only when
the fertility rates in these countries fell from seven children per woman to
fewer than two. The warring stopped because no more warriors were being
“In Gaza, however, there has been no demographic disarmament. The
average woman still bears six babies. For every 1,000 men aged 40-44, there are
4,300 boys aged 0-4 years. In the US the latter figure is 1,000, and in the UK
it’s only 670.”
Heinsohn concludes that the reason for Gaza’s endless
youth bulge is that a large majority of its population does not have to provide
for its offspring.
Most babies are fed, clothed, vaccinated and educated
Despite claiming the opposite, UNWRA will perpetuate the
conflict and the West is dumb enough to pay.
The author is a Dutch
Masters student in clinical psychology and a columnist for De Dagelijkse