A Study in Contrasts: Gaza and Somalia

Jul 21, 2011 | Uncategorized

This week, the United Nations and aid organizations have attempted to call the world's attention to a developing crisis in Somalia – where more than 10 million people are facing a disastrous famine. Every day, 2 adults and 4 children per 10,000 are dying as a result.

At the same time, Arab media reported that the largest mall in Gaza was opened this week, home to a number of retail outlets as well as a cinema and swimming pool. While its economy continues to suffer under Hamas rule, it is clear that Gaza is far from the "humanitarian crisis" that many anti-Israel activists try to depict it as.

In fact, in our analysis of data from the OECD and the CIA World Fact Book, Gaza continues to receive far more humanitarian aid than Somalia and other devastated parts of Africa.

Somalia receives $72 per capita in foreign aid, compared to $756 per capita for the Palestinian administered areas (Gaza and the West Bank).

In other words, Somalia gets just one-tenth the amount of aid that the Palestinians receive.

This is in spite of the fact that – according to The Economistthe Palestinians have one of the highest obesity rates in the world. Higher than Canada, Australia, and every single European country.

The extraordinary contrast between Gaza and Somalia should serve as a wake-up call for activists who obsessively target Israel for condemnation. For by inflating and distorting the situation in Gaza, those activists continue to distract the world's attention and resources from genuine (and desperate) humanitarian crises.



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