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On the humanitarian enterprise

This conclusion presents some closing thoughts on the key concepts discussed in the preceding chapters of this book. The book poses a challenge to the entrenched ways the humanitarian discourse dominates discussions on camps to the detriment of a more enriched understanding of the internal life of refugee society. A humanitarianism that is uninformed by the actual grassroots dynamics of the communities in which it seeks to work amounts to little more than a commercial exploit or even a racket. The fact of its overt political nature, for example, complicates the analysis of the humanitarian cause as it is undergirded by an explicit international commitment to refugee political aspirations, based on Palestinian exceptionalism. The book establishes with the entrenchment of the PLO/Fatah complex in Lebanon and not by their departure, and by following their historical trajectory in the camps, one derives an understanding of the endogenous causes of crisis.