As if the residents of the Gaza Strip have not had enough to worry about, with PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas curbing their already limited electric supply, now the World Food Program, providing food aid to thousands of Arabs in both the Gaza Strip and Judea and Samaria will be suspended due to lack of funding, according to a press release issued Tuesday.
“Unless new funding quickly arrives, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) may be forced to suspend its voucher food assistance in July for nearly 150,000 people in Gaza and the West Bank, the majority of whom are women and children,” went the announcement.
Headquartered in Rome, Italy, the WFP is the world’s largest humanitarian organization addressing hunger and promoting food security. It provides food assistance to an average of 80 million people in 75 countries each year, with an annual budget of $6 billion ($2 billion from the US, $1 the EU). And yet, with all this wealth, it looks like Gaza and PA Arabs will have to go without, come July.
“WFP urgently requires $6.6 million to provide food assistance through vouchers for the next three months to the poorest non-refugee families in Gaza and the West Bank,” WFP Representative and Country Director in Palestine Daniela Owen explains, projecting that “the suspension of our food assistance will have dramatic consequences on the poorest people, whose hardships show no sign of abating. Every dollar counts to avert a deepening humanitarian crisis with damaging spill-over effects on security and stability.”
Is the world’s largest food program unable to find $6 million in a $6 billion budget, or is this a ploy to use the Gaza and PA needy to squeeze just a little more out of the donor nations? The press release insists the WFP is on the up and up.
“The energy crisis has eroded people’s purchasing power and increased the prices of basic essentials,” the announcement continues. “The poorest families, including those assisted by WFP, are affected the most. Critical services in Gaza, such as health, water and sanitation, are no longer available after the shutdown of the sole power plant.”
This clarifies things a little. The Gaza power plant has been shut down due to a quarrel between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas over who should pay for the fuel to operate it. The PA is refusing to lend a hand, as part of Chairman Abbas’ effort to force Hamas into submission both in Gaza, and, more importantly, in Judea and Samaria, where in certain areas, such as Hebron, it is king. The UN agency, typically, instead of pointing the finger at the Arab culprits, is demanding additional donations.
“WFP is seriously concerned about the potential interruption of its food assistance to 92,000 people in Gaza, which is provided in partnership with the Ministry of Social Development and Global Communities, an international non-governmental organization. Credited with $10.30 per person each month, WFP vouchers allow families to buy essential nutritious and locally produced food. A disruption of WFP assistance would further undermine food security and deepen the dire living conditions of the poorest families, most of whom live on less than $3.20 per day,” the UN agency threatens.”
And now, on schedule, blame Israel:
“In the West Bank, where WFP provides vouchers to 57,000 people in cooperation with the Ministry of Social Development, slow economic growth and movement restrictions on people and goods continue to limit people’s employment opportunities. As food accounts for more than half of the budget of vulnerable people in these areas, WFP assistance is critical,” goes the press release.
“Slow economic growth” is UN code for Israel not permitting Arabs to work inside the green line because of their tendency to blow up buses and stab pedestrians. “Movement restrictions” is code for IDF checkpoints to stop same Arabs from blowing up things and stabbing people in Judea and Samaria.
In Gaza, Hamas terror and rocket attacks as part of a plan to annihilate the “Zionist entity” lead to a devastating war followed by a strict blockade. In the PA, incitement and fermentation of individual terror attacks lead to limits on employment and movement. In both cases, as soon as the relentless attempts to harm Israel would be given up, prosperity would follow. There’s no need for “more than a quarter of the Palestinian population – or 1.6 million people” to require food assistance in the PA. And in Gaza there’s no need for the unemployment rate to “exceed 40 percent,” with “more than 46 percent of people require food assistance.” All they have to do is give up on the dream of some day destroying Israel.
“Since 2011, WFP has injected more than $146 million into the Palestinian economy through vouchers, including $63 million in Gaza,” the WFP urgent call concludes, missing out on the opportunity to point out how much better the economy in question would have done if only it wasn’t so heavily invested in murdering people.