Gaza Water Libel Actually Unsupported By Gazan Academics
Even as two engineers from Gaza tell the true story, Ynetnews publishes a water libel fable on behalf of Hamas. First the water libel and then the truth from the mouths of Gazan scientists.
Ynetnews Water Libel
I guess Alex Fishman ran out of topics to write about because this month he raised the old issue of Gaza’s dire water straits. According to Fishman the problem is because Israel is not willing to continue providing Gaza with free electricity:
The . . . large and modern wastewater treatment facility built by the World Bank in the northern strip in 2013 has yet to be activated because there is no electricity, and Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman is telling Hamas: Stop digging tunnels and you’ll get everything—electricity, a port, etc. That makes sense. But it’s exactly how Israel’s governments have been brainwashing us over the years with axioms aimed at preserving the status quo and serving political needs. [emphasis mine]
Pardon me for my stupidity but I do not understand what brainwashing is going on here nor how it is relevant to the fact that the World Bank actually built a “large and modern wastewater treatment facility” in Gaza — that is going to waste, by the way, because the Palestinian Authority (PA) refuses to pay for the electricity needed to run it (and to run everything else modern and essential). Is it not possible that the PA is refusing to pay for electricity as a way to make Israel look bad and preserve “the status quo and serve the[ir] political needs” to make Israel look like the demon and keep up the farce of everything is Israel’s fault?
Later he writes:
There are those in Israel who believe that a shortage of budgets and infrastructures will encourage the Gaza citizen to rise up against Hamas.
What the hell is he talking about!? With all the aid monies provided to Hamas for infrastructure and development in Gaza going toward re-arming for the next round of hostilities against Israel, who is creating the so-called “shortage of budgets”? I would like the citizens of Gaza to rise up against Hamas because I think Hamas is an evil entity that should be flushed out with the sewage (just not into the sea or aquifers, please). Hamas is doing a good enough job all on its own of making itself hateful to the citizens it was elected to take care of. Yet people will still not risk their lives to rise up against Hamas.
Gaza Water Libel and the Brazil Middle East Peace Conference
I guess Fishman, in his drive to either blacken Israel or whitewash Hamas, did not hear about the proposed conjoint project between Gaza City and Ashkelon. Karin Kloosterman wrote about it on her website, Green Prophet. In 2009, the project was raised at a Middle East Peace conference in Rio de Janeiro:
Thanks to one man’s vision, the two cities will soon be working together. Ilan Juran, an American-Israeli specialist in urban infrastructure, is seeing to it that the residents of Gaza will be equipped with the same sanitation and sewage systems that are enjoyed by their neighbors in their sister city on the coast.
Partners in the hoped-for project include the mayors of Ashkelon and Gaza, the Israeli water company Mekorot, the Palestinian Water Authority, the United Nations and local municipalities.
All that remains is for Hamas to approve the plan.
Guess what! Hamas did not approve, and did not allow Gazans to attend the conference. Green Prophet reported that conference attendees from The West Bank (Judea & Samaria) and East Jerusalem, however, did sign the proposal without Hamas approval. Perhaps that is what allowed the sewage treatment plant to have been built in 2013. It did not help get it operational, however.
Gaza Water Libel Unsupported by Academic Study
Two engineers working at the Islamic University of Gaza just published an academic article in Gaza’s very own IUG Journal of Natural Studies. Entitled, “Comprehensive Solutions for the Water Crisis in Gaza Strip“, it outlines the reasons for the water crisis in Gaza and proposed solutions. Left unresolved, the situation will be irreversible by 2022, according to Mohammed Aiesh, civil engineer, and Yunis Mogheir, environmental engineer.
Let us look at what they suggest:
- Technical solutions that require outlay of funds, include building new storm water collection systems and upgrading existing ones that together would yield a saving of 12 MCM/year (million cubic meters), home-based storm water collection that would save about 5 MCM/year, and equipment to detect pipe leakages, the repairing of which would save 11 MCM/year. TOTAL = 28 MCM/year
- Legal solutions include: closing illegal connections people have made to their homes and other buildings (saving 15 MCM/year), closing illegal wells (saving 7 MCM/year), mandating the use of water saving fittings on all pipes and taps, etc., that would save a whopping 18 MCM/year, and educating the public on water conservation in order to save another 2-3 MCM/year. TOTAL = 42-43 MCM/year
According to the article, water extraction from the aquifers exceeds replenishment by about 140 MCM/year. Even without the electricity-run sewage treatment plants, the solutions above would be able to half that deficit and would go a long way toward providing the water needs of the Gazan population. And none of these solutions have anything to do with Israel.
The authors do find a way to involve Israel in their water problem, but only in one small paragraph in which they claim that Egypt and Israel prevent the free flow of construction materials and fuel. It is always convenient to blame Israel for maintaining a blockade of Gaza, even if it is not true.
Actually, to be more exact, they do not call Israel by name, God forbid! Nope! Our country is the Palestinian Occupied Territories (POT), just in case you did not know it. Funny how even in an engineering article in an academic journal, the Gazans find a way to show us that they do not recognize us and they envision Palestine as “From the river to the sea”. But we knew that anyway, did we not?