Saturday 27 December 2008

"Gaza families eat grass as Israel locks border"

The Times reported on 14 December that:
"AS a convoy of blue-and-white United Nations trucks loaded with food waited last night for Israeli permission to enter Gaza, Jindiya Abu Amra and her 12-year-old daughter went scrounging for the wild grass their family now lives on.

“We had one meal today - khobbeizeh,” said Abu Amra, 43, showing the leaves of a plant that grows along the streets of Gaza. “Every day, I wake up and start looking for wood and plastic to burn for fuel and I beg. When I find nothing, we eat this grass.”

Abu Amra and her unemployed husband have seven daughters and a son. Their tiny breeze-block house has had no furniture since they burnt the last cupboard for heat.

“I can’t remember seeing a fruit,” said Rabab, 12, who goes with her mother most mornings to scavenge. She is dressed in a tracksuit top and holed jeans, and her feet are bare.

Conditions for most of the 1.5m Gazans have deteriorated dramatically in the past month, since a truce between Israel and Hamas, the ruling Islamist party, broke down.

Israel says it will open the borders again when Hamas stops launching rockets at southern Israel. Hamas says it will crack down on the rocket launchers when Israel opens the borders.


Israel controls the borders and allows in humanitarian supplies only sporadically. Families had electricity for six hours a day last week. Cooking gas was available only through the illegal tunnels that run into Egypt, and by last week had jumped in price from 80 shekels per canister (£14) to 380 shekels (£66). "

This is the same Gaza that has a land border with Egypt, a border that the Egyptians seem somewhat unwilling to open.

This is the same Gaza that has supermarkets more full of food as many in the Caribbean I have seen and fairgrounds seemingly packed with fun-seekers.

This is the same Gaza whose Hamas rulers seem perfectly able to smuggle in huge amounts of ammunition, arms, and explosives but allegedly not food.

This is the same Gaza whose Hamas rulers still have in captivity Gilad Shalit, a man they have never allowed to send or receive letters or see a representative of the Red Cross.

Once again the Pallywood propaganda machine takes in another journalist, well in this case maybe not, as the by-line on this Times article is Marie Colvin. Marie Colvin has, as they say, form in this area and has produced more anti-Israel and pro-Palestinian articles than most journalists - you can read more about just two examples of Marie Colvin's past bias
“ethnic targeting” here
and her acceptance of Palestinians' words without serious question here.

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