The Israeli apologists rants that the blockade of Gaza, though hurts Israelis economically, must be kept in force to stop Islamic Resistance receiving arms from its supporters in Islamic Iran, Turkey, Syria and Lebanon. However, in reality, Zionist entity is heaping economic benefits from its blockade of Gaza and the West Bank. Before the blockade, Israelis used to exploit Palestinian natural resource and cheap labor – and now the Shylocks have found way to gain profit from their blockade.
The Gaza Strip is the most aid-dependent area in the world. Without the ability to export and to import raw materials, without the needed infrastructure for local industry, the Gaza Strip is unable to generate sufficient local income to sustain its population and must depend on aid. The Israeli siege thus creates the conditions for large amounts of aid to be sent to Gaza.
This aid must pass through Israeli ports and airports, with customs,3 storage fees, and transport fees ending up in the coffers of Israeli companies. The limitations set by Israel on the number of trucks allowed to enter Gaza and the prolonged checks the goods must go through increase the transportation and storage costs dramatically.
Much of the aid comes in the form of products – food, animal feed, petrol, cooking gas, medicine, etc. – procured from Israeli companies. These companies have thus been able to find a captive market in Gaza, get paid up-front (because checks from banks in the Gaza Strip aren’t accepted in Israel), and increase their sales. Most importantly, this aid is funded with foreign currency, but the goods come from Israeli companies which must be paid in Israeli currency. The result is that massive amounts of foreign currency are converted at the Central Bank of Israel into Israeli shekels in order to fund aid, and the Central Bank of Israel gets to keep the foreign currency. In effect, the Israeli siege of Gaza has transformed the aid industry into one of Israel’s biggest exports – companies that would normally provide domestic services have become sources for foreign currency, which contributes to Israel’s overall economic strength and has already eliminated Israel’s trade deficit almost entirely.
Prabir Purkayastha, writing for News Click, called the Israel’s recent relaxing of Gaza blockade as “an international charade”.
Shir Hever is an economic researcher with the Alternative Information Center, an Israeli-Palestinian organization active in Jerusalem and Beit-Sahour. Recently, he was interviewed by Paul Jay of ‘Monthly Review’. Shir told Paul that….
About 18 families in Israel control roughly 60 percent of the equity value of all companies in Israel. So it’s concentrated in the hands of 18 families. Of course, there are other rich people in Israel who control some more of that other 40 percent….
All the Zionist parties in Israel – starting from the so-called Zionist left or the liberal parties and all the way to the extreme right-wing, almost fascist parties – are actually almost indistinguishable from each other. And the controlling, wealthy families know that. They contribute about equally to the centrist parties, or the so-called centrist parties, because they know that it doesn’t really matter whether it’s going to be Likud or Labor or Kadima. These parties have the same agenda, the same strategy, and the same platform