Friday, August 03, 2007

Piling on Impoverishment in Gaza

The plan is either to persuade Hamas to capitulate or to prompt such widespread disaffection that the Gazans toss them out. Would you like to wager that either will happen soon, if at all? Since Mahmoud 'Abbas is fully complicit in this impoverishment plan, even with periodic $10 million arms and security subventions from the US, his political standing with his own people will further decline (and it wasn't that great to begin with). In the meantime, thousands more Gazans will be thrown out of work, malnutrition and illness will spread and it will simply not wash to argue that this is all the fault of Hamas. / Middle-East & North Africa - Industry in Gaza Strip near collapse: "Israeli restrictions on the flow of goods and raw materials in and out of the Gaza Strip since Hamas seized power there in June have forced the closure of most of the territory’s manufacturing sector, say local businessmen.

Four out of five factories have ceased operations, forcing producers to lay off at least 30,000 workers – on whom they say a third of Gazans depend for their livelihoods.

“Factories are going bankrupt daily but it is never announced,” says Amr Hamad, director of the Palestinian Federation of Industries. “Businessmen just turn off their mobiles and can’t be found.”"

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