[For] most Arab governments, the Palestinian issue has been supplanted by more immediate problems, indeed concern for their very survival, in the face of a number of factors including the possibility of Iranian success in the long-running Gulf war with Iraq, mounting Islamic fundamentalism, an economic crisis with severe social fall-out because of the crash in oil prices and the frustrations of a vast, newly educated generation, more than half the population of the Arab world. (New York Times, 22 October 1986)

Palestinians displaced from the Arab agenda by fear of Iran, the threat of Islamic fundamentalism and the destabilising anger of a doomed youth… hard to imagine now.

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