Three letters were published in The Wall St Journal in reaction to Bernard Lewis's piece On the Jewish question, in which he states that it is Israel's existence that is in question, not its size. Furthermore, Lewis writes, refugees were created by all major 20th century conflicts, including the war resulting from the partition into India and Pakistan. The Arab-Israeli conflict is no exception, it too having produced an exchange of refugee populations.
Both the first two letters miss the point about 'population exchange'. Steve Feldman is so outraged at the injustice of Palestinians 'losing their land' that he does not consider the issue of the Jewish refugees at all. Gary Goldman sees the Jews only as usurpers of Palestine. The fact that the Jews were indigenous to the Arab countries they were forced to leave, and not even party to the conflict in Palestine, has no effect whatsoever on his thinking. All that matters is that Palestinians were indigenous to Palestine, even though history has shown so many had been in the country for such a short time that they qualified for UNWRA refugee status if they had lived in Palestine for as little as two years.
So brainwashed are certain well-meaning westerners about the 'tragedy' of the Palestinians that they just cannot conceive that Jewish rights were violated as well. What would it take for a paradigm shift in western thinking to take place?