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December 21, 2004
Boarded-Up Bethlehem Israel's Fault?

The UN released a typically biased report about the critical economic condition in the town of Bethlehem, whence our Christmas celebration springs. It notes the rapid decline in tourism and blames Israeli defensive actions:

Urban Bethlehem, with a population of about 61,000, is now surrounded by nine Israeli settlements, roads restricted to Israelis, a multitude of checkpoints, 78 physical obstacles, and an Israeli barrier nearing completion on two sides of the town to protect against suicide attacks and other violence, the report said.

As a result, Bethlehem has become isolated from the rest of the West Bank and most importantly from Jerusalem which is only a few miles away, it said.

Tourism has plummeted from a monthly average of 91,726 visitors in 2000 to 7,249 in the first 10 months of 2004, a slight increase over 2003, it said. Since Bethlehem's residents rely overwhelmingly on the tourism sector, the economy has suffered badly.

At least in the AP report from Edith Lederer, there isn't a single mention of the triggering event in 2000 that created the need for all of this defensive action. Recall that in 2000, the Palestinians started a new phase in the ongoing intifada, unleashing suicide bombers by the score and killing Israeli women and children wherever they could be found. This Saddam-funded wave of terror against civilians in Israel required the Israelis to take steps to defend itself -- putting up the roadblocks, the wall, and the restricted roadways to Israeli settlements to protect against the suicide bombers.

As usual, the UN gives a complete pass to the murderous Palestinians and blames the violence on the victim. I suppose we can look forward to a report on Congolese refugees and the UN's mistreatment of them that blames the systematic rape and sexual slavery on the victims there, too; the 11-year-old temptresses corrupted the blue helmets into raping them. Once again, the UN demonstrates its unfitness to conduct international relations during the era of Islamofascist terror and reveals its utter lack of moral vision.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at December 21, 2004 5:10 AM

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» Rip & Read Blog Podcast for December 21, 2004 from Rip & Read Blogger Podcast
Here's what I Ripped & Read today: Blame the Victim Alert Captain Ed at the Captain's Quarters has noticed a UN report on the status of Bethlehem in the West Bank. Here's what he said: The UN released a typically biased report about the cr... [Read More]

Tracked on December 21, 2004 10:58 AM

» UN says "Bethlehem is isolated town" and it's Israel's fault. from Hyscience
For me personally, thoughts of Christmas relate to the event of Christ's birth in Bethlehem, of peace and love, of repentance and salvation, and grenades thrown in cars that have Israeli license plates. [Read More]

Tracked on December 21, 2004 11:56 AM

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