Politics

Hamas Starves Palestinians by Stealing Food, Selling on Black Market

The Hamas terrorist organization is starving Palestinians in Gaza by stealing food that arrives in humanitarian aid shipments and then selling it on the black market, according to Zvika Klein, editor of the Jerusalem Post.

Those who cannot afford to pay the exorbitant prices are going hungry, he said — not for lack of aid deliveries, but because Hamas seizes the aid on entry and uses it to enrich itself and fund its ongoing war against Israel.

Klein’s account of the situation in Gaza corroborates anecdotal information from social media videos, showing people selling food supplies delivered through international humanitarian aid in marketplaces within Gaza.

In an op-ed, Klein explained:

“The food shortage and use of the word ‘hunger’ have been exaggerated,” a senior Israeli defense official told me on Thursday during a briefing. “There is no hunger in Gaza,” he said, explaining that most of the food that Israel has been sending into the Strip has “immediately been taken by Hamas terrorists, who then sell some of the supplies for ten times more than what it’s worth.”

A former senior Israeli defense official who I spoke to on condition of anonymity has also said that “there is no food shortage in Gaza; there are those who are hungry since Hamas has taken all of the food and they don’t have enough money to pay Hamas on the black market.”

According to this former official, the food does not reach those who need it most since Hamas controls approximately 70-80% of the area. What happens is that Israel and foreign countries bring food and aid into Gaza. Then gangs take the supplies at gunpoint, and a significant portion of the population is left unable to afford necessities.

Klein acknowledged that there is hunger in Gaza, but argued that it is being perpetuated by Hamas. Hamas’s strategy is to create suffering among the Palestinian people that triggers the world to isolate Israel and force it to end the war before it has destroyed the terrorist organization that launched the October 7 terror attacks.

On Friday, the Wall Street Journal reported that there is a “vicious cycle” increasing hunger in northern Gaza, in which international organizations and Israel that try to bring food into the area are attacked by residents, making it more difficult to bring food into the area, and increasing hunger. There are debates about how best to improve access to food and other aid.

President Joe Biden said in his State of the Union address Thursday that the U.S. would build a port in Gaza to help with the delivery of aid, though he also claimed there would be no U.S. “boots on the ground,” creating doubt about how the project would be handled.

The U.S. and other countries have been using airdrops of aid, though these have no independent means of reaching the needy.

Israel has said that the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), which caters specifically to Palestinians, lacks the capacity to deliver aid and is compromised by its association with terrorism. But there is no alternative yet.

A hostage deal that would bring about a temporary pause in the fighting would help, but Hamas refuses to reach an agreement to release captive Israelis unless Israel leaves Gaza and ends the war.

Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent book, “The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it),” now available on Audible. He is also the author of the e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.



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