Israel’s decision to demolish its buildings at the Karni border post from Gaza is a clear indication that the Netanyahu government wants to close the post permanently, as part of its policy to isolate Gaza in the long term. Karni (known to Palestinians as Al Muntar) is one of five border points between Gaza and Israel, and is easily the largest and easiest for commercial use.
Karni cost millions to build and was one of the main economic gateways to Gaza, but after the Hamas take-over in Gaza, Israel closed its side, although later allowing transport of only wheat, animal feed and gravel. With these rules, Israel is trying to cut Gaza off from any imports and exports from Israel, but also from commercial access to the West Bank.
This policy of isolation is the Israeli blockade in a new guise. Israel seeks to throttle normal communication and trade, and make sure that the Gazans stay in a subsistence economy, with no hope of normal economic development. The leadership in both Gaza and the West Bank need to expose this blockade for what it is, and resist it with wider Arab support and the international community has to confront these cruel Israeli moves. Free trade in both Gaza and the West Bank are vital for the normal functioning of the Palestinian economy.
(gulfnews.com / 08.01.2012)