Thursday, June 03, 2010

Palestinians Destroyed the Greenhouses

The question none of these commentators seem to ask, however, is why doesn't the government in Gaza spend money improving the lives of Gazans, rather than acting as a missile launching pad for Iran? Why, when Israel left Gaza in 2005, didn't the Palestinians turns towards self-improvement rather than war?

When Israel left Gaza, American Jewish donors
paid to buy the huge greenhouses the Israelis had build in Gaza, so that Palestinians would have a foundation for a domestic food source:

The unusual arrangement was put together by James D. Wolfensohn, the former World Bank president and the current Middle East envoy for the Bush administration.

Mr. Wolfensohn also contributed $500,000 of his own money. "The arrangement gives a real opportunity for the Palestinians and makes the departure of Israelis from Gaza much easier," Mr. Wolfensohn said Friday in an interview. He added that he believed "the Palestinians are trying to make this a peaceful transition - at least the Palestinian Authority is."

The agreement, just four days before Israel is to begin evacuating settlers from Gaza, is intended keep valuable agricultural properties intact for Palestinian use.

Although Palestinians are eager to see the Israeli settlers go, the withdrawal could leave the Palestinians in even more dire economic straits, at least in the short term. About 3,500 Palestinians have worked in the greenhouses as employees of the Israeli settlers and would lose their jobs if the greenhouses are torn down. The greenhouses grow vegetables, spices, flowers and other produce that have become a major source of Israeli export income.

What did the Palestinians do? They destroyed the greenhouses, after looting the materials. If there is a food shortage in Gaza (which there is not), it is self-inflicted.

The blockade was not put in effect
until two years after Israel left Gaza, when Hamas, which is committed to the destruction of Israel and a client of Iran, took over Gaza. The blockade was a reaction to Palestinian rejectionist policies, not the cause of rejection.

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