31 December, 2008

Why is Gaza so overcrowded?

These days I find a lot of Robert Fisk's writing a bit overwrought, but he makes a good point in an article yesterday in the Independent ('Why bombing Ashkelon is the most tragic irony'): that when rockets are fired from Gaza to the Israeli town in Ashkelon, they are landing on the town many Gazans (or their parents, or grandparents) are from. Gaza is not naturally one of the world's most heavily populated places, but became so after Palestinian refugees found themselves stuck there when the state of Israel was established.

I understand that when Israel was admitted to the United Nations in the 1950s, one condition was that it was to allow the return of those who became refugees in the 1948-49 war. I also understand that this condition was not met.

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