After Israel carpet-bombed Gaza last year, destroying 17,000 Palestinian homes, international donors promised $3.5 billion to rebuild it. While the Palestinians waited, their babies died of hypothermia in the plywood huts they had been reduced to living in.
A year on, the number of houses that have been rebuilt is.....0. Israel constantly obstructs the importation of the materials that are needed, in spite of vague promises that its blockade would be lifted.
Most of the help donors promised has not been delivered, but then if you know that anything you do rebuild will soon be destroyed again by the Israelis, you might start asking what is the point?
Power cuts last up to 16 hours a day. Unemployment is 43 per cent. As for the relief effort, the Palestinians say: 'People come to talk to us every month. They talk, and they leave, and nothing ever changes.'
There are now signs that ISIS is feeding on the despair, and could be making Gaza its next target. With their blind support for Israel, Western leaders like David Cameron are laying out the welcome mat.
As for Israel, it calls its periodic attacks on Gaza 'mowing the lawn', and another one is expected soon. As one Israeli newspaper put it: 'Israel is heading to the next violent eruption with the Palestinians as though it is some sort of natural disaster that can't be avoided.'
See also my posts of July 22 and 28, 2014.