Imad and Sanaa al-Kassar, 23 and 21, were married nine months ago. With Sanaa 6 months pregnant, they came to sell the gold jewelry he gave her for the wedding. "We need the money for the baby," she said. Imad, an employee of the bankrupt and isolated Palestinian Authority, has not been paid in two months.Let's see, Gazans think it's easier to blame the big bad US for their woes instead of the guys with the guns running Gaza - Hamas. Why isn't that such a surprise? Gazans are pragmatic knowing that they can't exactly run into the streets to protest against Hamas or Fatah because they might end up on a slab. So, they're blaming the US instead for the problems caused by Hamas using their resources in their ongoing war with Israel, and refusing to accept Israel in a two-state solution.
Zahiya Abu Watfa, 70, was selling an exquisite bracelet of gold coins that she had owned since 1956. She needs the money for food and to help her children.
Jewelry, like land, is a traditional investment here, one of the last possessions to be sold. But conditions are getting dire for many, with 35 percent of the Gaza Strip's 1.4 million people dependent on salaries from the Palestinian Authority. Credit is exhausted and the economy is slowing down.
Tension is palpable between armed groups of supporters of Hamas, which runs the new government, and Fatah, the faction of the longtime leaders, who lost power in elections in January.
Gazans are wary, watchful and increasingly angry at their plight. For now they are angry at the United States for withholding financial support over the Hamas victory. But their anger may also turn against Hamas, whose refusal to recognize Israel has isolated its government, some Fatah leaders warn.
Gazans overwhelmingly chose Hamas to lead their government. They have no one to blame for their situation except themselves. They've allowed their leaders to be craven thugs whose highest aspirations are to turn Gazan youth into suicide bombers.