Gaza, beyond de-development to disposability and destruction - Gaza War Economy Brief Number 2

author: Adam Tooze
year: 2023

This article was first published on Oct 14th 2023 in “Chartbook – A newsletter from Adam Tooze” and is republished here with permission of the author. Adam Tooze holds the Shelby Cullom Davis chair of History at Columbia University and serves as Director of the European Institute.

In preparation for a massive retaliatory operation against Hamas, Israel has instructed the population of Northern Gaza to evacuate. Effectively, the IDF put 1.1 million people on notice of imminent  destruction. Apart from the practical and humanitarian question of where such a huge mass of people are supposed to go and how they are to support themselves, we must face the question: What kind of place is Gaza, that it can be subject to such instructions? How can a territory that is home to more than 2 million people be disposed of in this way? Why are there no powerful interests that react against the ruthless logic of a military campaign that simply designates a city for destruction? How did Gaza and its people become so isolated, so absolutely objectified?

Summary Highlights: 

  • Gaza was Not Always Like This
  • A History of Unequal Exchange
  • And yet Gaza’s full isolation was still to come.
  • Resourceful people confined in such desperate circumstances resort to
    extraordinary makeshifts.
  • Gaza before the War: a model for “de-development”


Read the full summary:

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