More than three years after Israel inflicted widespread damage on the infrastructure of Gaza during Operation Cast Lead, two Israeli companies have now won bids issued by the UNICEF for reconstruction projects there. In other words, after destroying much of the Gaza Strip, Israel is now reaping significant economic benefits from its reconstruction.
This is called “disaster capitalism” – something Israel has turned into something of an art form. To understand the phenomenon more thoroughly, read Chapter 21 of Naomi Klein’s essential book “The Shock Doctrine,” which explains in vivid detail why Israel now believes it is more in its economic interest to wage war than to make peace:
Clearly, Israeli industry no longer has reason to fear war. In contrast to 1993, when conflict was seen as a barrier to growth, the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange went up in August 2006, the month of the devastating war with Lebanon. In the final quarter of the year, which had also included the bloody escalation in the West Bank and Gaza … Israel’s overall economy grew by a staggering 8 percent – more than triple the growth rate of the U.S. economy in the same period. The Palestinian economy, meanwhile, contracted by between 10 and 15 percent in 2006, with poverty rates reaching close to 70 percent.