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Sunday, March 12, 2006

US Congress Hears Testimony About Inflated PA Demographics

As I told you all last week, a US Congressional subcommittee held a hearing last Wednesday on the overstatement of 'Palestinian' population numbers in Judea, Samaria and Gaza. The specific angle from which the committee was looking at those numbers was from the standpoint of their impact on US aid levels to the 'Palestinian Authority.'

I have not seen the existence of this hearing reported anywhere in the mainstream media (MSM). But that isn't really surprising now, is it? After all, when Ariel Sharon unilaterally withdrew expelled all the Jews from Gaza, he told us that he was doing it to 'guarantee a Jewish majority in the State of Israel.' Of course, if the Arab population numbers are overstated (as they apparently are), there's no need to expel Jews from their home in order to create a smaller geographical area that will have a larger Jewish majority. The Kadima Achora party has no interest in you knowing that the 'demographic bomb' is a stink bomb, because their program is to continue moving Achora all the way back to the 1949 armistice lines - for now. The world media has no interest in having you know about this story either, because they all feel sorry for the 'poor Palestinians.' So it is left to Arutz Sheva - which has already been kicked off the commercial airwaves in Israel - and to Florida Republican Ileana Ros-Lehtinen - to tell us the bitter truth.

The findings of an exhaustive study on Palestinian Authority (PA) population statistics claims that the Palestinian Authority has deliberately misled U.S. and international humanitarian efforts by inflating their population figures to attract billions of dollars in relief funds.

Bennet Zimmerman, Project Leader of a recent study entitled "Arab Population in the West Bank and Gaza: The Million Person Gap," presented the findings to the Congress this week. Zimmerman addressed the House International Relations Subcommittee on the Middle East which has been investigating U.S. funding of the Palestinian Authority.

"American tax dollars and other international humanitarian aid have been based on inflated population numbers which have been accepted without question by governments and aid agencies," he said in an interview with the World Net Daily. "Our researchers pointed out that money has been spent to help Palestinians who were double-counted, never born or not present in the West Bank and Gaza."

According to Zimmerman, the current official population for the West Bank and Gaza, which is listed as 3,279,141, is a highly inflated figure that does not reflect the demographic reality, which he estimates at 1.4 million in the West Bank and 1 million in Gaza, totaling 2.4 million. "The U.S. and Europeans have for years accepted entirely exaggerated data. Now Congress has some very tough questions to ask, including how its own State Department and the CIA could have been duped and what do to regarding future aid," stated Zimmerman. [I'm not sure the State Department has been 'duped.' I would think it's more likely that the State Department played along. I am less sure about the CIA, although considering that it trained the 'Palestinian police,' it may have played along as well. CiJ]

Israeli demographic analyst Yoram Ettinger concurs with the findings in Zimmerman’s report and claims that there is no credence to the myth of a potential Arab majority in Israel. “And so it turns out that the demographic knife is not really hanging over our heads. In 1900 Jews constituted just eight percent of the population west of the Jordan, in 1948 it was 48 percent, and today we are 60 percent. Without Gaza, the Jewish majority is stable at 67 percent within [including] Judea and Samaria,” Ettinger maintains.

...

Zimmerman and his researchers discovered inconsistencies after they carefully compared the official Palestinian Authority statistics with Palestinian voting records, birth and death records published annually by the PA's Health Ministry, immigration and emigration data from Israel's Border Control, internal migration of Palestinians from the territories into Israel recorded by the Israeli Interior Ministry, Israeli Civil Administration population studies, U.N. population surveys, and surveys conducted by the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics and the World Bank.

...

Ettinger emphasizes how crucial it is for future policy decisions to be based on proven statistical facts reflecting the reality of the Palestinian population figures. “Only Palestinian immigration to the West Bank – and from there over the "green line" – will upset the demographic scales. Fateful policy decisions must be based on facts, not on statistics provided by the Palestinian Bureau of Statistics, and certainly not on superficial assumptions about demography that bear no relation to reality,” Ettinger stated.


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