I have, for a time, lived in a UN refugee camp – as a refugee. While the physical needs of the refugees are provided for – and I am very, very grateful for that – the UN refugee camps are not designed for a person to be a contributing member of the human race.
Not at all.
They are a place to seek physical shelter from persecution or hardships – a transit point along one’s journey. They are resting place, not a place of permanent settlement. Just a safe rest stop that lets you, the refugee, make arrangements for a productive life elsewhere without worrying about your immediate physical needs.
We, humans, form communities: our social bonds are forged in the back and forth of giving and taking, helping and receiving help. To be a balanced human being, we need to both give and receive. We cannot function properly only giving or only receiving.
My family lived in the UN refugee camp for only 5 months, but even during that short time, I have noted that most adults (especially the men) had begun to undergo some serious identity crises. Being a dependant – and idle – gnawed at them, even though they knew it was a temporary situation until some country checks through their background and decides to accept them as immigrants.
Yet, the UN refugee camps are now seeing the third or fourth generation of Palestinian refugees!
The Palestinian leadership and the agencies which profit from the Palestinian refugee situation are conspiring together to keep the Palestinian people in these camps and dependant on them. For what? A power rush? Shame on them!