Should Gaza Hope To Be The World’s Densest Region?
Gaza can only wish to be like the other densest world regions among which it is classified!
The lies about Gaza continue to be reiterated ad nauseum on the social media and even in reputable news outlets. This short piece contradicts these lies.
First Lie: Gaza is the densest place on Earth.
People seem to love to say that Gaza, with its approximately two million people on 365 square kilometers, is “the most densely populated place on Earth”. Yet, a simple Google search would have shown this to be untrue. Dense it may be, but it is 6th densest and not the most dense. Words matter. Accuracy matters. Just wait a moment before you bite my head off, telling me that there is little difference between the most dense and 6th most dense.
— Ahmad sama’an (@ahmadsaman7) June 29, 2016
As world statistics show, Aside from Gaza, the densest places in the world are also among the most prosperous: Macau, Monaco, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Gibraltar. Gaza should only hope to be as dense as any of these five!
Related to the issue of population density is size. While Gaza is small (365 sq. km.), Macau (30 sq. km.), Monaco (2 sq. km.) and Gibraltar (6 sq. km) are smaller. Singapore is not that much larger (720 sq. km.). And Hong Kong has a whopping 1104 sq. km. to its name. In fact, there are about 30 countries smaller than Gaza and about 50 countries with a land area less than 1000 sq. km.
Second Lie: Gaza is the world’s largest open-air prison.
Another thing people seem to love to say is that Gaza is “the world’s largest open-air prison” that is under siege. They don’t seem to feel the need to provide any details to justify this statement and it is repeated as if everyone already knows why that is so. In fact, Maha Mehanna said exactly that in her talk at the 2015 J Street Gala. Too bad, because if one goes into the details, some of these details would necessarily include at least 5 well-equipped universities, the palaces built by Hamas leaders, the luxurious 5-star hotels with pools and an ocean view, and a reported 600 millionaires and billionaires living there. In fact, Israel is remarkably inept at maintaining a siege if that is what is supposed to be happening in Gaza.
— Huda Kishawi (@HudaKishawi) June 28, 2016
I wonder if anything remotely like this can be claimed for the Warsaw Ghetto with which Gaza is often equated by those wanting to demonize Israel.
As a matter of fact, the wealth and luxury to be found there seems more in tune with the five regions with which Gaza shares its status as most densely populated places on Earth.
Lies and Excuses
There is no excuse, therefore, for Gazans to wallow in their misery other than the possibility that it serves their interest to do so, apparently more than it would have served their interest to make the Gaza Strip the Middle East Riviera (similar to how Lebanon used to be the Switzerland of the Middle East).
Gaza – how I look forward to the day when you will emulate those places on Earth that are more densely populated than you are!
That is the day you will put down your weapons of terror and war and just begin to ensure decent lives for all your citizens, rich and poor.
[Image by Manar al Zraiy via Wikimedia Commons]