Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Questionable statistic from the UN

Ma'an reports:
Israel’s military “buffer zone” along the eastern and northern edge of the Gaza Strip eats up 30% of the territory’s arable land, the United Nations said this week.

Fieldworkers with the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) told the Christian Science Monitor that they have been unable to verify conditions in this 300-meter-wide band of land along the Green Line.
A quick calculation shows that 300 meters along a border 6 miles wide and 25 miles long is roughly 10 square kilometers. Gaza itself is 360 square kilometers. This means that Israel's buffer zone takes up less than 3% of Gaza land.

If that is 30% of Gaza's arable land, that means that Gaza has really very little arable land to begin with - some 33 square kilometers, less than 10% of the area. Satellite pictures of Gaza look like at least half of Gaza is "green," however.

This statistic seems unreliable, to say the least.