Gaza exporting flowers for Valentine’s Day

Gaza will ship its first exports in over a year this week. Israel has agreed to a temporary lifting of its blockade on the territory so that flower-growers can ship 25,000 carnations to Europe in time for Valentine’s Day at the request of the Dutch government. For the head of Gaza’s flower growers association, the ...

By , a former associate editor at Foreign Policy.
588554_090212_flowers5.jpg
588554_090212_flowers5.jpg

Gaza will ship its first exports in over a year this week. Israel has agreed to a temporary lifting of its blockade on the territory so that flower-growers can ship 25,000 carnations to Europe in time for Valentine's Day at the request of the Dutch government. For the head of Gaza's flower growers association, the gesture is too little too late:

Mr Khalil said Gaza used to export as many as 40 million flowers a year, so he dismissed the shipment of 25,000 carnations as "insignificant".

"We had to feed the flowers to the animals because we couldn't export them," he said.

Gaza will ship its first exports in over a year this week. Israel has agreed to a temporary lifting of its blockade on the territory so that flower-growers can ship 25,000 carnations to Europe in time for Valentine’s Day at the request of the Dutch government. For the head of Gaza’s flower growers association, the gesture is too little too late:

Mr Khalil said Gaza used to export as many as 40 million flowers a year, so he dismissed the shipment of 25,000 carnations as “insignificant”.

“We had to feed the flowers to the animals because we couldn’t export them,” he said.

“We are afraid of losing our reputation in Europe and are afraid to plan ahead.”

For more on the miracle of globalization that is the international flower industry, check out Amy Stewart’s 2007 FP article, “Flower Power.”

SAID KHATIB/AFP/Getty Images

Joshua Keating was an associate editor at Foreign Policy. Twitter: @joshuakeating

More from Foreign Policy

A Panzerhaubitze 2000 tank howitzer fires during a mission in Ukraine’s Donetsk region.
A Panzerhaubitze 2000 tank howitzer fires during a mission in Ukraine’s Donetsk region.

Lessons for the Next War

Twelve experts weigh in on how to prevent, deter, and—if necessary—fight the next conflict.

An illustration showing a torn Russian flag and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
An illustration showing a torn Russian flag and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

It’s High Time to Prepare for Russia’s Collapse

Not planning for the possibility of disintegration betrays a dangerous lack of imagination.

An unexploded tail section of a cluster bomb is seen in Ukraine.
An unexploded tail section of a cluster bomb is seen in Ukraine.

Turkey Is Sending Cold War-Era Cluster Bombs to Ukraine

The artillery-fired cluster munitions could be lethal to Russian troops—and Ukrainian civilians.

A joint session of Congress meets to count the Electoral College vote from the 2008 presidential election the House Chamber in the U.S. Capitol  January 8, 2009 in Washington.
A joint session of Congress meets to count the Electoral College vote from the 2008 presidential election the House Chamber in the U.S. Capitol January 8, 2009 in Washington.

Congrats, You’re a Member of Congress. Now Listen Up.

Some brief foreign-policy advice for the newest members of the U.S. legislature.