Hamas Bars Patients From Benefiting From Field Hospital


Ever heard of the British medical drama Peak Practice?

I’ve got an idea for a Gaza medical drama: Peak Palestinian.

Gaza’s Hamas rulers said Wednesday they would bar patients from the Palestinian territory from going to a field hospital opened by a US charity in protest of what they say are insufficient services.

The hospital, located on no-man’s land along the Israeli border, is meant to support the overwhelmed health system in the blockaded enclave.

Medical workers access the site from Israel, while patients must cross through a Hamas-run checkpoint to reach the area. The idea of the hospital came under an informal truce between Israel and Hamas, the terrorist group that has ruled Gaza since 2007, to mitigate dire living conditions and prevent further cross-border violence.

Initially, Hamas and Israel — bitter foes that have fought three wars and dozens of smaller rounds of skirmishes — saw a common interest in the project.

The evangelical Christian group FriendShips, which quietly built its “Camp Gaza” tent hospital over the past year and a half, said this week it was “ready to receive patients.”

But the ministry now says it will not send patients, claiming the hospital is not providing services that were promised.

“We have concluded that without offering the needed service, cooperation with the new hospital is unwelcome,” said Abdeltaif al-Hajj, head of international cooperation. “It’s not providing the services we hoped it will provide when the idea was discussed.”

The Palestinian side wants the hospital to provide chemotherapy, blood disease care and other treatments unavailable in Gaza. Patients needing these services have to seek treatment in Israel or the West Bank through a complicated permit system. Instead, al-Hajj said it was offering services already available in Gaza, which he called “disappointing.”

Being ungrateful for help offered? Check

Preventing your people from benefiting at all because you are angry you did not get everything you wanted? Check

I’m just surprised “television doctors” was not on their list of unfulfilled demands.

Izzie Stevens grays-anatomy

(sorry I couldn’t resist).

Hat tip: Maimon

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A law school graduate, David Lange transitioned from work in the oil and hi-tech industries into fulltime Israel advocacy. He is a respected commentator and Middle East analyst who has often been cited by the mainstream media