Tuesday, November 15, 2011

A fire in Gaza

I mentioned yesterday that a pilot program for exporting furniture from Gaza is planned to start next month in an agreement hammered out between Israel, the EU and Gaza exporters.

Israel insists that all goods exported from Gaza, whether agricultural or manufactured, adhere to international quality standards. Very few furniture factories in Gaza meet those standards.

One of those is named "Biseiso" after its owner, who worked hard to meet those standards. He was excited to have the opportunity to export his furniture to the EU and his workers had been working hard to set everything up.

This morning at 5:30, Biseiso's factory was destroyed in a massive fire. Multiple fire companies were needed to control the flames.

Beseiso does not think this fire is a coincidence.

According to him the other factory owners in Gaza are fearful as well that the same fate awaits them.

Whether it is from jealous competitors or from people who believe that Gazans should not profit from "collaborating" with Israel, there are some big problems in Gaza that do not get any attention because so many want to keep the focus relentlessly on alleged Israeli crimes.

And people like Mr. Beseiso are the victims.