Gaza’s border with Egypt? #EndGazaBlockade

Oxfam inadvertently left the neighbour on the western border of Gaza off the map in its YouTube clip but not on its eastern border. An honest mistake despite the Arab Spring drawing the attention of Egypt and its politics to everyone’s ears including ODA activists.

The Gaza Strip has two borders: both Egypt and Israel restrict trade with the Gaza. Through this honest mistake in map reading, Oxfam blames Gaza’s problems on the Israeli blockade. I am sure it will correct its position once it reads a map such as the one adjacent which is identical to that in its YouTube clip in all but one detail. It has all of the Gaza’s neighbours on it.

Any blockade of Israel of the Gaza Strip is not grounds to attack Israel because it can always trade across its border with Egypt but Hamas backed the wrong side in the recent Egyptian presidential election.

After the military coup, the military leaders closed 95% of the tunnels that connected Egypt to Gaza. In 2013-2014, Egypt’s military has destroyed most of the 1,200 tunnels which were used to smuggle food, weapons and other goods into Gaza, including flooding them with sewage. Egypt is setting-up a 13-mile buffer zone with the Gaza Strip. The includes clearing 10,000 residents from 800 houses.

Hamas derived 40% of its tax revenue from tariffs on goods that flow through those tunnels with Egypt. One estimate puts the economic losses at nearly a fifth of Gazan GDP.

The Israeli blockade of the Gaza may have something to do with Gaza firing missiles randomly  at civilian targets in Israel. Hamas now murders Israeli citizens in the street in knife attacks.

The Gaza strip may have political differences with the Egyptian military dictators but it is not actually committing acts of war against them.

There is no good reason why Oxfam is not protesting against Egypt’s blockade of the Gaza in the same way they protest against breaches of international law involved in the Israeli blockade!Passing references to the Egyptian blockade in press releases is not enough.

No peace convoys attempt to break the Egyptian blockade. Plenty were launched against Israel. One reason is the Egyptians are rough customers. There is rule of law in Israel, none in Egypt.

Further evidence of mass kidnappings of peace activists

Smoke rises after Egyptian army demolished houses on the Egyptian side on border town of Rafah, Wednesday, Oct. 29, 2014. (Photo credit: AP/Eyad Baba)

Egypt is doing more work to set up a 13-mile buffer zone with the Gaza Strip, after it discovered hundreds more tunnels running from the Hamas-run Palestinian enclave into the Sinai Peninsula. The plan includes clearing 10,000 residents from some 800 houses. Egypt has already destroyed over 1600 smuggling tunnels into the Gaza Strip and is constantly on the lookout for more.

Where is the international protest is regarding this continued blockade of the Gaza Strip? Why haven’t the peace activists taken to the streets across the globe to protest at this blockading the Gaza Strip?

The only possible explanation as to why these principled peace activist are unavailable to take to the streets is mass kidnappings. This blockade by Egypt of the Gaza Strip  and its intensive long-term dimensions has been regularly reported in the Guardian, so they must know of it. The Egyptian blockade of the Gaza Strip is so intense that Hamas has resumed trade with Israel.

Of course, once you start discussing the Egyptian blockade of the Gaza Strip, you must discuss what Hamas is doing to remove it, which are well-known.

As the Guardian reported, Hamas’s decision to carry on fighting in in the recent war recent weeks despite catastrophic civilian losses owed as much to Egypt’s refusal to lift this blockade as it does to Israel’s. Egypt wanted Hamas to accept an immediate ceasefire without preconditions. Hamas wanted Egypt to spell out how it might ease the siege before it would agree to a ceasefire.

Even the Guardian occasionally mentions who was the real target of the Hamas missiles fired at Israel. Where are the peace activists? Kidnapped?

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