When it comes to Gaza and the life of Palestinian “refugees”, the gap between myth and fact is so dramatic that perception almost stands reality on its head. Health and quality of life in the territories vastly exceed the average in most parts of the world – and not just where people are in more obvious need, such as Africa, but even in developed countries like China and areas of South America.
The poverty rate in Gaza is 16% – roughly equal to Spain, Germany and California. The rate of poverty is actually higher in Greece, most of the EU, and even parts of the United States, such as Washington D.C. As researcher Daniel Greenfield has pointed out, at 24%, even the poverty rate in Israel is actually 50% higher than in Gaza!
Gazans receive more free food aid per month per capita than anyone else in the world, including those living in famine-stricken regions. The average Somali, for example, receives seven times less in aid. The average Zimbabwean, with a life expectancy of 46, also receives about seven times less in food aid than the average resident of Gaza – who has a life expectancy of 73 (even higher than in Russia, Malaysia and neighboring Egypt).
It seems that while Palestinians shows one side to gullible visitors and the international media, Western taxpayers are actually subsidizing something entirely different.
Following the unilateral withdrawal of Israeli security forces in 2005, no one can claim that the Gaza Strip is “occupied territory.” This still hasn’t stopped the usual critics from making other accusations about the misery of the people there, such as charging that the Palestinians are “under siege” from Israel and starving as a consequence.
In fact, the only siege that the people of Gaza are under is what they bring on themselves. Their government uses donated humanitarian aid to smuggle rockets which are then fired into Israeli population centers. When this fails to provoke Israel into conflict, Palestinian terrorists cross the border and attempt to kidnap or kill Israelis in their own land.
Likewise, there is absolutely no starvation in Gaza. The Palestinians receive enormous amounts of free assistance from the rest of the world and are so well-fed that the territories are actually the eighth most obese “country” in the world according to the World Health Organization.