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Letter from Richard Sherman to the Editor of The Guardian re: No Refugees in Jenin

Dear Editor,

Beth McKernan and Sufian Taha need to take Vocabulary 101 or possibly the Editors of the Guardian could buy them a dictionary. ("History Repeats Itself: Israeli attack Turns Jenin into War Zone"). Every legitimate dictionary in the world defines a refugee as someone who FLED their home because of religious or political persecution. FLED is the operative word.

The 1948 war in which five Arab armies representing millions and millions of Arabs attempted to annihilate the Jewish population of the tiny nascent state of Israel ended in 1949. Any refugee from that conflict has to be at least 73 years old or older. It is unlikely throughout the entire world there are more than ten thousand Arab refugees from that conflict still alive. There may be many less.

The Palestinian Arabs -- obviously all young men -- killing and attempting to kill Jews in Jenin are not refugees... There's that dictionary again with that word FLED... They are residents of Jenin. They did not flee from anywhere. It is not complicated.

It is as ludicrous to call these residents of Jenin "refugees" as it would be to call a Jew born in Los Angeles in 1970 a Polish refugee because his Polish grandparents fled persecution in Poland in the 1930s.

Richard Sherman


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